Dr. Zach Bush in a Facebook post this morning speaks of the deep, mind-shattering pain running through the world in the wake of both the COVID-19 and the George Floyd murder by police.
Dr. Bush very eloquently speaks of the suffering of so many and the inadequacy so many of us feel in the face of such despair and hopelessness. I have watched Dr. Zack before and he is an animated, informative speaker. Today he oozed humility and authenticity.
I resonated deeply with so much of what he said. What appealed to me most is his suggestion to PAUSE, to just stop and allow a little light into the awareness of each and every one of us in these tumultuous times, to allow a deep, regenerative, repair process to begin. It may be only mother nature that has that ability to be so deep, so resilient and so powerful that it can overcome the horrific nature of our history. It’s there, when we can take the pause, stop the consumption and the violence, the fear, the suppression, the insecurity and just breathe for a while.
Peace radiated out from the heart is more powerful than mind can ever understand, both for the radiator and the world.
In the face of the despair of ‘what we have become, what have we done to ourselves as a people, to our planet‘, it is easy to feel small and helpless and hopeless, especially if we don’t appear to have an outlet for our voice to be heard.
Yet those thoughts and emotions too originate in the mind. They cause us to forget the origin of all life that is whole and sacred.
Dr. Bush speaks of pausing, of going into nature and breathing, breathing for George Floyd, and all those who can no longer breathe due to such violent endings to their lives, for all who suffer oppression in one form or another.
Creating a Vision
Scion Earth held a MayDay Mass Global Meditation back on 21 May in which I participated. (They’re hosting another on June 21). It was very powerful. At the end, the host, Michael Beckwith of Agape led an inspiring meditation asking who we wanted to be after the COVID-19, what was the world we envisioned?
As a result of stay-in-place orders, I found myself at my home for the summer of 2020 instead of wandering the mountains in my RV as was usual. So I created a garden in my very small backyard. I hadn’t created a summer garden for many years since I traveled every summer. It was wonderful to be back in-the-dirt again. In my visualization for the world in Dr. Michael’s meditation, I saw the world as a garden of love, peace, oneness, new growth, requiring tender nurturing and sustenance that is fresh and full of valuable nutrients.
Listening to Dr. Bush this morning – I understood how much more powerful that vision is. Breathing the sharp, clear, high, desert air for all who struggle to breathe, experiencing the peace-that-passes-all-understanding for all who are faced with hopelessness and despair. It’s my little contribution in a world that appears to be on a free-fall path of destruction that otherwise overwhelms me as I ask what can I do?
There’s a space – it is butterfly-kiss fragile. It lives between hope and despair, anger and frustration, hopelessness and helplessness. It can only be accessed through stillness, stillness of mind and stillness that lives in the heart.
Dive deeply into this space – that nature provides in such abundance, and we find the timelessness of eternity. In my wee back yard, I hear the sound of water in a small waterfall, I see the wild colors of flowers brightly blooming and the green of new vegetable growth joyfully reaching to their potential as squash and lettuce and other vegetables. I smell the dampness of the earth after last night’s monsoon rain and the wafting aroma of crushed catmint. Birds happily peck at their birdseed tray and an occasional hummingbird dive bombs past my ear. The breeze huffs through a neighboring giant cottonwood.
There isn’t the noise and clamor of my voice being heard in a protest like others, but there is the sound of silence, permeating my being. I allow images of the pain and suffering of the world, of the planet, to float across my awareness. I breathe in from my nature vortex for this pain and suffering. I breathe out into a divine connection, a deep and ancient awareness of the ONENESS we all are.
Words Matter – Thoughts Matter
I am reminded of another Facebook post by Kathryn Grace.
This is a fun experiment anyone can do at home that demonstrates the effects of various thoughts on the environment.
Kirlean Photography demonstrated many years ago the effect of thought on plants – you need special photography equipment. Then there was the water demonstration in The Secret of Water. Again you need special equipment.
This home grown experiment with rice and water is a good visual to remind us all when we are watching TV or reading social media, how essential it is to begin with a clear still mind and endeavor to maintain a still clear mind. Too often our reactions contribute to polarized thinking, but when we can watch and read from stillness, something the Buddhists call right action can arise that is sourced from that stillness. Then we can then act, or not, with integrity and authenticity.
I think we are all called to play our parts, but being clear on what our parts are is critical. Some will march, some will change laws, some will work with compassion helping those suffering, some will talk to their neighbors, some will sit in silence in nature and breathe for the world.
I echo Dr. Zach’s call – to pause – to sit in stillness, preferably in nature but the location isn’t as important as it is to listen, to learn, to educate ourselves, to know from a deep inner place of connectedness, the essence of the Life Itself that we all are.