AND Focus On the Light

July 24th, 2016

During a time of political conventions, where the one held in the past week focused on galvanizing around fear and a common enemy, I am struck by the bullying behaviors that show up when people are scared. When fear is the emotion, we are often unable or unwilling to see our own light and the light in others.

Everyone has light somewhere. Some have abandoned their light and gotten caught in fear and anger, often misdirected at people and circumstances they perceive to be blocking the lives they want to lead. That doesn’t mean that the light is gone.

FDR said that, “the only thing to fear is fear itself.” This statement holds a deep truth. We do not control the way life happens, the circumstances and situations that appear in our lives. We do choose our response to them. Fear is one possible response, almost always unconsciously chosen by not asking about the complete picture, instead blinding accepting the storyline created by someone else. Determination to find our footing, live from our truth, work to discover how we can work together to solve something, and extend compassion to other people are other possible responses to the same situation.

Responding from fear fosters bullying and cowardly behaviors. We turn a blind eye to anything we do not want to see, even if it would show us the way to create the world we want to live in together. We are not victims of our circumstances unless we tell ourselves we are. AND doing so means denying our own light and the light of others.

Compassion is the response that comes most naturally when we choose to be a light in the world. Instead of judging, we look for what might be causing misdirected anger and fear. Instead of judging others harshly in order to elevate ourselves and make ourselves feel more important, we might ask more questions to understand what is real and what is pure fiction.

Then again, to focus on living from light and own our choices requires conscious choice. There really is no room for bullying, when choosing consciously unless you intentionally want to inflict harm. And these days it will take all of us focusing on providing more light to expose deception and harm in the making.

And we can do this because we are stronger and more full of light than we often admit. Neil Diamond used to sing, “turn on your heart-light.” That’s a response that could heal a nation and a planet.

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