teeter totter of life

Come join us for a community healing.

Elizabeth and I were inspired by Retreat Week to create a opportunity for people of all walks to get together and focus on healing the community. The plethora of tragedies in the world at the moment cannot be ignored and this is one way we are choosing to respond. This is not to ignore the personal level of suffering, bring what you will to this healing. This is a free event and open to the public. It will be held Thursday, August 25th 2016. Details will be in next newsletter.  

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Elizabeth’s Thoughts

Life is all about change and thus, full of ups and downs. These ups and downs appear on global and local scales as well as personal and internal scales.  It can feel really hard sometimes to even stay balanced amidst all this shifting especially when something big drops you down. Often it feels impossible to affect positive change and growth when there ís such a struggle to just find balance let alone maintain it. With the politics of an election year in the U.S., the Stanford rape case, the mass shooting in Orlando, the floods in West Virginia, there ís plenty happening on the bigger scale. On the more personal scale maybe your best friend is getting a divorce, you've lost a loved one, made a big move, or even just broken off with a long time friend. Wherever your focus is there are times when overwhelm or helplessness is so close. 

Sometimes the size or emotional weight of an event might make it feel as though you are too small to affect change. Sometimes your empathy is so strong you can't separate yourself from an event which can lead to feeling trapped in the event rather than feeling able to act outside of the event for a positive shift. Knowing yourself as a whole being, knowing where your physical, mental, emotional, and energetic edges are, and knowing what unseen support structures are always available can go a long way to finding balance and affecting growth. By maintaining this self awareness and leaning on those support structures, we can focus on the powers we have. 

When we simplify the ups and downs to light and dark (not the only or always the best way to see these, but helpful here), Martin Luther King, Jr.'s words: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that," fit right in. If we equate love and light, we have a powerful force at our very core. As electro-magnetic beings, the electro-magnetic field (EMF) of our hearts is far greater than the EMF of our brains. We are made of lovelight. Add in the focus of intent and we can use lovelight like a laser beam and send it to the places of darkness in this world. 

When I first wrote this, the floods in West Virginia had just happened and since that event (which was already following some other big scale events) there has been one tragedy after another. While religion and race are leading to mass displacements from home in other regions of the world, here in the U.S., racism is a central issue. When we remember that we are all one, it is even more important to use our voices and stand with those who are not in the privileged segments of society. As a human, I consider it my duty not just to say I believe in equality for all humans, but to do something about it. As Elie Wiesel said, "The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference." At this time in the world this is something to really let sink in. We can send those laser beams of lovelight all over the world and it can make a difference, but that is not the only way to use our energy. We can use our voices to join with those groups standing up for change. We can use our prayers and presence to join with public prayer groups bringing attention to where we all as humankind need change. And I will say here, because it needs to be said in all situations, Black Lives Matter.
Creating change can be hard, but by creating small bits that build into bigger pieces, we can affect change on so many levels. On that note, Kim and I are hosting a community healing event at Ix Art Park and we hope you'll be able to join us.

I also want to mention that I am hosting, via email, a 15 day gratitude practice in August. Please keep an eye out here or here for details on how to sign up.

Elizabeth can be found here.

Kim’s Thoughts
Riding the teeter-totter of life I’ve felt pretty blown over by what’s been happening all over the country and world. Hearing about the events led me to notice my emotions. Initially I found all I could feel was detachment, a numbing sort of way of moving through life. Then there was the sadness, the fear and then depression. I also noticed my relationship to fear shifted and I was aware my focus was self not community.
While we were working on this newsletter we were confronted with the shootings of black men by the police. These unfortunately are not new or isolated incidents. We were once again asked to look at the implications of white privilege in our society. We also had to deal with the equally horrific ramifications of misplaced retaliation. I now worry, will my friend’s little boys be the target of profiling when they are teens, and will anything be different in 10 years? I worry about my family members who are police officers and raising families.
I’m also trying to understand my own role in continuing to perpetuate the cycle of racism? How are my unconscious biases affecting my actions? What is it that I can do to help diffuse the situation?
There has been no shortage of rhetoric- some insightful and inspiring but much of it that feels to me to be divisive and shortsighted. To me there has been very little presented that has felt like it offered a constructive and pragmatic path forward. That is why this recent podcast about two policemen who transformed a highly racially polarized situation in their community seemed like a ray of light in a dark time. I would love to know what you think: link
I normally find that I can easily go up and down on the teeter-totter, but what about when energetically it feels like you don’t have the hope or energy to push back up? It started me thinking how the fear I had been experiencing also created this narrow perspective, focusing on self rather than others. I would rather focus on how to build community than how I need to protect myself. I wondered how we could bring about healing to the community and raise our personal and collective vibration. As a result, Elizabeth and I have decided to host a community healing event at IX Art Park, we hope you can join us.