“The way we see the world shapes the way we treat it.
If a mountain is a deity, not a pile of ore; if a river is one of the veins of the land, not potential irrigation water; if a forest is a sacred grove, not timber; if other species are biological kin, not resources; or if the planet is our mother, not an opportunity – then we will treat each other with greater respect. Thus is the challenge, to look at the world from a different perspective.”
I climbed up Buffalo Ridge yesterday. I nicknamed this ridge that shelters our home to the southeast Buffalo Ridge months ago – it just has the energy of buffalo roaming free for me. Well, yesterday I climbed to the top of Buffalo Ridge. And now, as I stare out my window at that ridge, it looks completely different to me. Maybe it’s because I’ve been talking about climbing this ridge for 2 years and I FINALLY did it! Yes, that’s part of the change.
But my internal shift involves more than just accomplishing something that I set out to do; Buffalo Ridge is now known to me in a completely different way. I have an intimate relationship with this ridge now; I look at Buffalo Ridge and see the rocks I scrambled over to reach the very top. And I see the circle of old pines that I sat beneath and rested. I remember startling the deer that were bedded down on its slope in the heat of mid-day. And I remember all the cactus just on the verge of blooming as well as the little white flowers already in full bloom.
Today I look out the window and I don’t see a ridge that I climbed. Instead I see an ally that watches over my home and neighborhood. I see a friend who shared some beautiful secrets with me. I am connected to Buffalo Ridge in a new way, and it will never again look like ‘just a hill’ to me!
I want to share a great Video on the Power of the Human Heart, Center of Unity Consciousness. The value of energetic coherence is explained. And tons of info from the Institute of HeartMath is shared.
This new research into the energies of the human heart is amazing. And it’s quite different from what I learned about the human heart in Nursing School. Feels expansive and true to me. What else is your heart capable of? 🙂
I am pondering today: How much do my “views” about the world actually shape my future experiences in the world? How much do my beliefs about the world and how life works create the form my future takes? Do I usually get what I believe I will get?
This seems especially relevant to me right now as the U.S. enters the home stretch of a particularly nasty and malicious presidential election. And it’s also an election where the 2 main presidential candidates have very different viewpoints about the world and how it all “works.” So, which viewpoint do I vote for – Obama’s or Romney’s? Does my vote even matter? How much might this one little choice alter my future?
Years ago, 2 amazing change agents named Jerry Weinberg and Jean McLendon introduced me to an eye-opening model of perception and reality:
Malicious, Stupid or Kind Universe?
Do I see my world as Mean and malicious? Do I believe that people are out to hurt me and reject me? Do events seem to conspire against me? Do I live in fear that God is watching and waiting to punish me?
Or is my world Stupid? Does everyone I meet seem to be a moron? Do I believe that I am the only one that knows what’s going on around here – is everyone else just too stupid to see the truth?
Or do I live in a Kind world? Are people basically caring and kind? Do people want to assist me and help me? Is God supporting me and helping me in every moment?
(I believe this model was originally created by psychotherapist Virginia Satir)
I LOVE this model of the Universe! When I take the time to use it, I realize just how much I can sabotage myself by approaching the world like it is out to hurt me or trip me up and get in my way.
Remembering this model, and asking myself just one simple question can jerk me right out of my “story” about whatever is happening in my personal life OR in world events today that bothers me:
“Which Universe am I living in today?”
Asking which Universe I find myself in right now, helps me stop whining and blaming others. Then I can back up and gain a bit of perspective. And when I ask this question a lot, I begin to see how I add to my own misery every time I approach the world from any space other than kindness and benevolence.
What happens when I assume a kind Universe, a benevolent God who is just waiting to help and support me? What happens to my day?
And what would happen if I choose to make kindness my religion?
“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
My heart opens whenever I see this quote from the Dalai Lama. And that’s the energy I feel emanating from the Dalai Lama; pure kindness. I bet HE inhabits a kind and caring Universe most days. 🙂
So, here I sit pondering my personal life and global events… How much does my viewpoint matter? Do my choices make any difference?
I choose YES! I choose to matter –
because in my world, change happens one kind little choice at a time.
What Makes Life Good?
What Makes Life Worth Living?
I hope to spend the rest of my life exploring the answer to those questions!
Brene Brown claims humans live to connect with others. She spent years interviewing thousands of people and exploring self worth, happiness and the importance of connection. Brene claims the happiest people
have the courage to be imperfect.
have the compassion to be kind to themselves first, and then to others.
create connections as a result of authenticity.
fully embrace vulnerability.
“Let yourself be seen. Love with your whole heart.
Practice gratitude. Lean into joy.
Believe you are enough.”
What Else is Possible Here?
What if I am both a good witch and a bad witch,
depending on the day?
When did I decide that women are supposed to be sorted into good or bad? saint or sinner? When did I conclude that we are either innocent pure madonnas or conniving evil whores?
I blame my messed up need to decide whether I’m good or evil on too many Disney movies… and I’m only half kidding! I challenge you to name one female Disney character that is not some ridiculous caricature of pure good or pure evil. And no, you CANNOT count the female dog in Lady and the Tramp! I’m talking about female HUMANS in Disney movies – name one – I dare you. 🙂 Consider Snow White and her nemesis, the Evil Queen. How about Cinderella and her Evil Step-mother? Or there’s Ariel and the Evil Octopus Lady Ursula. We are talking some seriously twisted black and white views of women!
Or maybe I should blame it on my Christian upbringing… no, wait, those are ALL bad, evil woman images aren’t they? Eve, Lilith, Salome, whorish Mary Magdalene. The only good female image I can come up with after years of Sunday School is Mother Mary and she is merely a vessel at the beginning of the story brought in to birth the baby Jesus. Then she exits quickly stage left. The Bible expresses a pretty dark view of my gender.
But it’s not just women getting labelled all good or all bad. The entire world seems to obsess about sorting everyone and every experience into good or bad, right or wrong, black or white. We love to polarize! Watch what the politicians say about each other and you’ll see exactly what I mean. Last week the Republicans praised Mitt Romney as our national savior and vilified Barack Obama as the evil anti-christ. This week it’s the Democrat’s turn; now Obama is wearing the white hat and Romney is pictured in black. What if we chose to realize that BOTH candidates are just mere mortal men? Human beings with both strengths and weaknesses? What if we just stopped buying into this black and white bullshit?
If you hate politics, just watch a little reality TV and notice how black and white it is. The Kardashian sisters appear to spend every waking moment fighting about which of them is the good-est witch and which is the baddest! Even the son-in-laws are sorted into good (Lamar) and evil (Scott). It is so polarized and so divisive. But it makes for tons of drama. And we all just cannot seem to look away.
What if we just stopped playing the polarity game? What if we chose to see the world as a thousand different shades rather than just black or white? Blow that black and white mindset up! It only makes us crazy and upset anyway.
Ok, so what if I embrace both my good witch AND my bad witch? Everyone who knows me will tell you I am quite capable of being both – and sometimes even in the same day. 🙂 What if I just relax and stop judging myself and my every experience as GOOD or BAD, RIGHT or WRONG? And what if I stop judging everyone else too?
I remember a story I heard years ago about the dangers of judging our experiences as good or bad:
A farmer had only one stallion. One day, the horse jumped a fence and ran away.
All the neighbors came by saying, “Oh no! Such bad luck! You must be so upset.” The man just said, “Maybe good, maybe bad – too soon to tell.”
A few days later, his stallion came back and brought twenty wild mares with him. The man and his son corraled all the horses.
All the neighbors came by saying, “Wow! This is such good news. You must be so happy!” The man just said, “Maybe good, maybe bad – too soon to tell.”
A few weeks later, one of the wild horses kicked the man’s only son, and broke the boy’s leg in 3 places.
All the neighbors came by saying, “I’m so sorry. This is such bad news. You must be so upset.” The man just said, “Maybe good, maybe bad – too soon to tell.”
The country went to war, and every able-bodied young man was drafted to fight. The war was terrible and killed many young men from the region, but the farmer’s son was spared; his broken leg prevented him from fighting.
All the neighbors came by saying, “You are so lucky! Your son didn’t have to go fight” The man just said, “Maybe good, maybe bad – too soon to tell.”
What will happen if I live in a state of not judging myself or my experiences?
What will happen if I meet EVERY experience with the energy of “maybe good, maybe bad – too soon to tell”?