Friday, October 26, 2012

Energy of Hate

Over the past few weeks I have observed the word hate creep back into my thoughts. It hasn’t been in relation to people, just to things or situations, I hate it when…(and not in the funny Billy Crystal on SNL kinda way.) Hate is a word I had eradicated from my vocabulary because I don’t like to carry the energy of it in my body and because words have such power.

I honestly think that the reappearance of it in my mind is related to the negativity surrounding the political campaigns across the country, specifically the presidential campaign. And it’s not just the politicians. There is a sad lack of civility in our political debate. It is always the other side is wrong and my side is right. There is very rarely a discussion of what we have in common or even a civil discussion of differences. I often think that children behave better than adults do when it comes to politics (or sports but that’s a different matter), though I have even seen the divisiveness of the debate process spill over onto my daughter as she watched them for her Civics class.

I was sad to see that I had let it touch me too, that I had become part of the problem. By even thinking that word I was adding the energy of it to the world around me. What energy it is too. Look at some of the synonyms for hate; loathe, execrate, despise, abhor, detest, abominate. (I had to look up execrate! It's not a nice word.) It feels uncomfortable just looking at those words let alone the feeling of directing them at something. And think of all the people directing thoughts of hate or loathing at each other right now or at the presidential candidates. How overwhelming. No wonder it wandered into my thoughts.

Now I’m inviting it to wander right back out of my thoughts. I liked it when the word hate was not one that crossed my mind or entered my heart. I don’t know how or why people choose to live with that word inside themselves. There is a heaviness that comes with hatred, a force that is directed at others. Imagine all the force of all the hatred that is being focused in our country right now. What are we creating?

I must choose differently. You have my apologies for the hate that I added to the world over the past couple weeks, even if it was just hating that the light turned red or the slowness of the internet connection. Think of all the millions of people that could have been touched by it if the energy of that hate could travel through the bits and bytes of cyberspace to others. I shudder to think.

I will focus on civility, on love. I will do my best to hold thoughts and use words that create a positive force in the world. I will return to my own personal Campaign Pledge 2012. I sit with the idea of that pledge almost every morning after I wake up, but I will try to return my focus to it throughout the day, especially over the next two weeks.

My reason is simple and really Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said it best, “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Let My No Be My No

In a previous post I wrote about the vision of the country and the world that I am holding. It’s a way of saying yes to the world I want to create. Years ago though I learned that No can be equally important.

There was a time in my life when I didn’t know what my future looked like, when I didn’t know what I wanted it to look like. I found that the only way I could make good decisions during that time was by simply knowing what I didn’t want. I learned to let my no really be my no and my yes really be my yes. I learned a great deal during that time and said some very big Nos that created a lot of change in my life and took a lot of courage.

Now is a time to practice some of those learnings again. It is a time to let my No be heard loud and clear in balance with my yes.

I have been simply stunned lately by the realization of the magnitude of the things that we have been saying yes to in the world we have created. Does that mean that I have said yes to the atrocities in the world? Yes, on some level I think it does because I didn’t stand up and shout, No! Now is my time to do that.

The words feel harsh compared to the gentleness of my yes, but must be said. Sadly the list could be much longer. This at least is a beginning.

No, I will not accept a world where people starve to death while others throw excess food away.

No, I will not accept a world where womens' and girls’ bodies are used as weapons of war through rape.

No, I will not accept a world where a fifteen year old girl is shot in the head at point blank range because she spoke an opposing point of view.

No, I will not accept a world where our natural resources are seen only as a commodity and are depleted without regard for the future or the lives lost in the recovery of those resources.

No, I will not accept a world where one is judged to be less worthy than another because of the pigment of their skin, their religious beliefs, who they love, how much money they have or how much they weigh.

No, I will not accept a world where the outside of a person is deemed more important than what is within.

No, I will not accept a world where hatred guides people’s choices.

No, I will not accept a world where people die for want of medicine when those medicines are readily available.

No, I will not accept a world where whoever is the strongest or has the most money has power over others, where people use that power to bully and oppress others.

No, I will not accept a world where young men feel so desperate because society leaves them behind that they turn to violence toward each other.

No, I will not accept a world where whole villages, whole races are murdered because of their beliefs, color or creed.

No, I will not accept a world where people are forced to live on the street and are ignored rather than loved, assisted and seen.

No, I will not accept a world where love thy neighbor is merely spoken but not acted upon and lived.

No, I will not accept a world where multi-million dollar corporations are guided by greed rather than community.

No, I will not.