It is a brand new year, a brand new beginning. Yet, many of us are still trying to find our center, politically, emotionally and spiritually since the 2016 election. I believe it is the lack of expression of our depth that led to this precarious moment in time. “Precarious” because many of the things we least wished would happen within our democracy is now happening. It is interesting that our Constitution did not mention political parties, and that George Washington warned against them, yet we now live in the clutches of two major political parties who are driven by money. Over the years, as a liberal, I have sadly witnessed corporate Democrats attempt to gain power for the party, but at the cost of its soul. We will continue to witness this strangle-hold until we have the courage to speak our deepest truth and give voice to those things we most cherish and love.
Hate is an interesting force which screams volumes in our culture. Hate brings adrenaline with it. Hate brings conviction with it. Hate declares: “I’m not going to take being treated unfairly!” Yet hate, and its first cousin fear, are not as effective, nor as powerful, as audacious-love. As women, we tend to connect deeply with that which we love. Be it family, the environment, friends, we’re naturally wired to protect what we hold dear. And caring about something we love demands fierce audacity and the radical courage to use our voices as instruments for truth.
As we move forward, I invite you to ask yourself: “At this point in my life, what do I most cherish? What do I hold so sacred that I am willing to speak my deepest truth, no matter how much resistance I feel from others? What am I will to be a guardian for during this critical time on our planet?”
For me, it is our beloved environment and all the animals which dwell thereon. In 2017 and beyond, being a guardian—via donations, public speaking, volunteering—is essential for my soul growth. Also, this month I begin writing my dissertation on “cultivating resilience” which entails interviewing internationally-known women who developed resilience while witnessing environmental destruction firsthand (e.g., Chernobyl, Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, etc.). These kinds of activities are grounding and enable me to contribute my energy to something I love deeply.
This is a brand new year. Now is the time to access our depth and give it a clear, strong voice. There is the belief in certain social and spiritual circles that politics should not be discussed. This is a very dangerous myth. If those of us with mind and heart fail to speak up, we give our power away to angry, psychotic voices like we are now hearing.
Let us be grounded and strategic as we oppose what does not ring true to our hearts, while whole-heartedly supporting what we treasure. Let our frustration and apathy be transformed into conscious activism. Let us avoid low level energy and increase mindful practices: meditation, gratitude practices, time in Nature—any activity that keeps us moving forward with grace and conviction. And finally, let us remain open to possibilities as we stay focused on intentions and actions which honor our deepest truth.
Laura V. Grace, Ph.D. (c) is a spiritual activist and producer of the Central Coast Women’s Symposium. http://www.lauragrace.net