No doubt about it, last week was rough. The attack on the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters was shocking, upsetting and difficult to process – no matter what your political leaning. We witnessed an angry mob breach the U.S. Capitol and wreak havoc in its hallowed halls. The aftermath left five people dead.
The fact that President Trump helped to incite the violence over his anger at losing the election gives us cause to reflect on our personal lessons of the past four years. Individually, collectively, morally and spiritually.
However, it’s not easy to focus steadfastly on ourselves when our tendency is to strike out in frustration and anger, even when justifiable, at others. Yet, we must liberate ourselves first. Let me explain.
We are walking through uncharted territory. As novices, feeling our way through the dark, one thing is clear. We cannot carry the burden of one-way thinking, harmful personal beliefs and prejudices if we want to clear the deck of unwanted carelessness and violence.
When dealing with an intense and dangerous crisis in which difficult decisions must be made, it is the responsibility of each person, to become as calm and clearheaded as possible. That requires self-awareness, which is the courage to carefully assess our own agenda, motives and faults.
After that, we need to assess the collective, which means the various groups involved in the crisis. What are their beliefs, grievances and fears, etc.? This leads to a more profound understanding of their motives and actions. That includes your own group.
Examining the situation morally is challenging because it’s easy to become pious and “holier than thou.” That often leads to arrogance and blame of others. When we feel we are better or above others, we’re in the danger zone of missing the answers needed to heal the situation. In the rush to act and put out the fire, we can easily stoke it, inciting more violence.
And finally, we need to look at the situation spiritually. What does that even mean? A while back, during a protest that turned violent I heard someone say, “We must lean into community with something greater than ourselves.” To me, no matter what your beliefs, if you just connect with the order of the universe and reflect it in you life, it’s spiritual. That leads to the practice of deep listening, which allows us to discover insights that develop into peaceful solutions.
Does this happen overnight? No, but when we rush to solutions and overlook the underlying causes, we create more harm than good.
Where do we go from here?
In our society self-care is a huge and important topic. When we don’t eat well, exercise or control our emotions we can feel depleted, weak, negative and sometimes hopeless. However, we know how to reverse that by practicing self-care.
Each of the above four practices above are a part of radical self-care. Each one takes us deeper into ourselves and life itself. It’s the path of freedom that lifts us above the chaos and drama of the world and gives us insights and solutions. It shows us how to skillfully navigate the turbulent waters of change and excel in all area of life.
It is where you begin to understand and develop the new consciousness that is needed to meet the demands of our times.
Image by ArtTower from Pixabay