I am sorry for the world. I am sorry for each being. My heart aches and wishes peace for all that feel shaken.
May we be here for each other.
In my Japan, I remember catching live lobsters like stuffed animals on the streets of Osaka. I remember an automated toilet that frightened my hiney right off the seat. I remember courteous, kind people. So much respect. I remember feeling tall.
My heart aches and wishes peace for all that feel lost.
In truth, I do not know how to adequately respond.
I was waiting. Huddled in my car listening to NPR numb and stricken. Doing nothing.
But, nothing is just that.
And, not acceptable. At least to me.
My little head and heart cannot find articulate nor tangible ways to help. But, I’m trying…
I do believe that we are all connected. I know this to be true.
And, it’s so simple. But kind of amazing.
So, maybe we can all start there. Change your energy. Pay it forward. Make peace. Make someone smile. Or three.
It’s a start.
I also wanted to share a reading. It comes from a Buddhist perspective and I find it to be both anchoring and inspiring.
“At the heart of Buddhism lies both realism and optimism. The realism entails an honest and unswerving recognition of the suffering and violence in our world. These existed at the time of the Buddha and they continue in our modern world. The optimism comes from recognizing the potential for alleviating suffering and violence. We can in fact remove from our hearts the toxic forces of greed, hate, and delusion. We can replace them with peace, loving-kindness, and compassion.
In the face of unimaginable tragedy, violence and hate, we are called upon to honestly recognize our own fear, confusion and anger. Fear ignored produces more fear; confusion unacknowledged churns up more confusion; anger not confronted spawns further anger. To develop our mindfulness of all three is to learn how to be free of their forces.
This is a slow and gradual process. But the more free we become, the more we are able to organize our lives around our best intentions. The intentions to be kind, compassionate, helpful, happy, and liberated are among the most beautiful qualities we have as humans.
These qualities are not luxuries. They are not optional. We need to be able to call upon them when we respond to the cries of the world around us. The optimism of Buddhism is that we can make a difference to the world around us. Our thoughts, words, and deeds of empathy, love and caring are the needed counter-forces to hatred, violence, and despair. Our own efforts to find inner peace, our example, can be an important force of wholesome change for people who don’t know of that possibility.” (adapted from a talk by Gil Fronsdal, October 1st, 2001)
We are working on a “Yoga Jam for Japan” at Mighty Yoga where we are going to raise energies and monies to send along. I’ll be co-teaching and organizing 1 or 2 of the ‘Jams’. I’ll share our readings and the event info, as it becomes available. Come if you are in the Ithaca area! Just come.
To quote another of my favorite teachers: “May we all remain confident that we can make a difference.”
And, please, never stop.