2021 is off to a wild start. I once again find myself overwhelmed by the great divide that has taken hold of the United States. When I set my intention for 2021, compassionate action, I knew it would be hard, but necessary. Last week showed that taking an active role in our collective healing as a nation is more important than ever. Our democracy depends on it.
To get some ideas for how to make a difference, I've been reading A Year of Living Kindly by Donna Cameron. Early in the book she talks about indifference.
Our world is plagued by big issues like poverty, homelessness, inequality, injustice, bullying, climate change, a pandemic, and more. These problems don't have clear, simple solutions, so we think "what can I do?" and avert our attention.
But as Cameron says in the book, "every kindness has a ripple, and even if we can't solve the problem, we can alleviate the suffering or lighten the load for one person. And the action we take might inspire someone else to take a similar action and help one more person. The ripples are endless. There is no such thing as a small kindness."
Instead of looking away, let's confront hatred, racism, and the spread of misinformation, with love and compassion, calls for equality, and truth. Let's act with kindness. Let's lend a helping hand within our communities, so that no one has to go hungry or be without a safe, warm place to sleep. Let's not forget that our health matters, and that the collective good is in our best interest. Let's take care of the Earth, so she can continue to provide for us.
I have hope that we can turn the tide, and make 2021 the year that our nation becomes united once again.
I'll leave you with this prayer from the Jewish tradition that Roger Gabriel shared in a guided meditation I practiced recently:
"May your actions transform this world, from a world of harshness to a world of compassion. From a world of ignorance, to a world of enlightenment. From a world of death to a world of life renewed."
Photo by Jessica Furtney on Unsplash