”I often find that my psyche hovers between despair at the world as it is, and amazement.”
Sometimes I wish I were a song writer. What a gift, to be able to say, with few words and a simple tune, what is in one’s heart right then, and turn it into a song which can be sung, hummed and remembered by so many other humans besides oneself. The amount of song snatches and tunes I have tucked into the filing cabinets of my memory is ridiculous, and I am not a musician. What amazing creatures we humans are, to be able to file away such enormous amounts of consciousness, both trivial and not so. And yet, all those billions of scraps of memories are not always so readily available to us. Over the course of a lifetime, we build up mountains of the stuff, not unlike how sandstone is created, or through heat and pressure, metamorphic rock. From tiny bits of this and that, layer upon layer, we literally build who we are. It is amazing to think about this. Each one of us is truly a work of art, made by us, molded and shaped, painted and carved, smoothed, polished and dusted into who we are in this moment. And then tomorrow or next week or year, we add more clay, paint and texture, and re-work ourselves again, becoming a new, different version of our fundamental selves. What a fascinating process this life is!
Not only do I have song lyrics in the file cabinets, but all sorts of things: lines of poetry, phrases which someone told me once, or which I heard someone say randomly somewhere, familiar terms of endearment my parents and grandmother would repeat throughout my childhood, the intonation of my beloved’s voice as he murmurs my petname, the cadence and lilt of my daughters’ voices, and laughter. Funny how you never forget the sound of someone who is close to you’s laughter. It imprints itself indelibly upon your mind and heart, unique and lovely as music. Remember that wonderful scene from Mary Poppins, when they meet Uncle Albert for tea on the ceiling? There they all are, laughing their heads off, having a tea party in the air, bouyant from their merriment and joy of being together.
It is a rather sad fact that I have the sort of temperament which predisposes me toward melancholy and seriousness at least as much, or more often, than levity and happiness. This has fluctuated throughout my life, but is certainly true these days. All too often thoughts of what is wrong in the world, of all the injustices and tresspasses against humanity encroach upon my psyche and heart, weighing me down and causing me grief. And I worry, unfortunately. A friend and I spoke on the phone yesterday, and I shared some of my worry thoughts with her. She told me that she had just been travelling and had met someone with whom she shared her worries. That person’s response to her was, ‘yeah, and is it helping, is the worry helping you?’ I repeat this question to myself. Does worry help any situation? My mind immediately jumps to the simple answer, ‘No, of course not, worrying never helps.’ And yet. My nature does not allow me to take seriously the song (we all know it so well) about don’t worry, be happy. Back to those billions of song lyrics again.
But, if worrying doesn’t help, and it isn’t enough to just be happy while the world is going to hell in a handbasket, then there must be another way, some other mode of handling life’s troubles and frights. The truth is, life on planet Earth is frightening me more and more these days. Never before in my whole time here have I been more concerned about the future. Not just my little future, not even my precious children’s future, but our collective future, the future of humanity. It is the year 2012, after all. All that Mayan calendar stuff has somehow seeped into the cracks in my mountain of consciousness, along with the undeniable facts of global catastrophes, rampant greed and destruction, combined with a general feeling of unease and helplessness. As much as I want to remain hopeful and Pollyanna-like about it all, I am finding it very difficult to be.
There are those who call the times we are living in ‘The End days,’ from the book of Revelation in that good old book we know as The Bible. And really, if a thinking person takes a hard, long look at the world, it is not a far leap to see that yes, things seem to be rapidly going from bad to worse. However, I am not one to welcome this, as are others, some of whom I know personally. I know people who say wholeheartedly, ‘Bring it on! Come on, Armaggedon, do your worst! Let’s cleanse this world of its scurges and evildoers now, and get it over with. After that, the Good people can again live in peace and harmony.’ Hmm. Somehow that scenario doesn’t quite do the trick either. So what can help us humans to stop feeling such fear and anxiety, stop worrying and have instead courage and strength enough to face the future which we are collectively creating?
Dear Readers, if you have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I do not assume to have answers to these huge questions. I am simply an observer and articulator of questions, and leave it to those of you who are far more clever than I, to find the answers. For all the darkness of the world as it is now, there is also a tremendous amount of light. We all contain light and tremendous energy, and we can illuminate each other’s way through the dark labyrinths of our times. Not to mention the sheer amount of cosmic light, such as huge solar flares which are bombarding Earth as I sit here typing these words.
We are living in a time when forces of domination and destruction are extraordinarily strong and powerful. I am not a bible thumper, or anything remotely resembling one. Still, it is important to recognize this, and not shy away from it and pretend it doesn’t exist, to ‘just be happy.’ We must not only strive to be happy within our souls, happy to be alive, to breathe the air, to love each other, but we simply must also be so brave. I think these times are demanding us humans to show real bravery and inner strength now, to stand firm against the forces of destruction and death. It is time for us to fight, both what lives within each of us and also without, which would enslave and destroy us. Dear Readers, it is time for each of us to begin thinking larger, beyond our own individual lives, families and communities. You must know that what happens to one affects the others, this is science, it is how the world and its people function. I read blog after blog here where the main concern is simply, ‘Me. Me, my life, my stress, my troubles. My personal happiness.’ We have got to go beyond such small thinking. The future of Earth and humanity are absolutely dependent on it. Not in a year or six, but NOW.
It is so easy to think that one little person doesn’t matter, I can’t do much to change things anyway, I will let the others who are stronger and cleverer do it. But that is not the truth. The real truth is that each one of us has the strength and courage to act in heroic ways, to find that core inside of us which will change the world. It doesn’t even have to take so much, we don’t have to be superheros, but we do have to do something, take an action, make a decision, have a conversation, write a blog, write a song, make a sculpture, paint a picture, scribble a sign, plant a garden, talk with your neighbor, carry a sign, let your voice be heard, change the world. Find the place of hope and replace the worry with faith. It is not easy work, this work of changing the world. The hours are long, the pay is horrid, the rewards are few and far between. And yet. Somewhere inside of us lives faith in something greater, something so powerful that even the most evil creatures we could imagine cannot stand up against it. Call this power whatever name you choose, but call it, call upon it, find it and use it to help us all.
Viva la Revolution.
The Future, The Present (andles1229.wordpress.com)