Wednesday, April 16, 2014

the people around me - our seventh offering

recently, i decided to tap into the incredible wealth of thoughts, insights and experiences 
of the people around me. i wrote to a buncha these different people asking for their insights
on different subjects to share on my blog. i hope to be posting one of their responses
here each wednesday.

i asked the ever creative, Sorrow, a real tough question. i asked her for her thoughts on how
to allow the pain in the world to be there and still keep going and believing in the hope.
she was in the process of writing a story for her daughter and loved the question and decided
to try to incorporate it into the story! how cool is that?! so her response is in story form! oh yeah!

“ Ursa, I went into overwhelm today. I spent to much time reading the news and listening to people share how bad things are in the world. The tyranny, the pollution, the apathy and the rampant violence. It sat on my heart like a giant pile of rubbish, stinking and smelling and crushing me.” I leaned into her warm furry body and hugged her close.
She stroked my back and rocked me a little “ Cara, your heart is so big, the well of your souls compassion so deep.”
“ Is that a bad thing Ursa?” I ask her.
“ No, Cara! Creating that space, where you grieve, even for those whose lives do not intersect your own is an important thing. Remember Cara, that everything is connected. Your compassion will reach out in ways you will not see.” she says.
“ But Ursa, It's so Huge, so heavy, what do I do with it?” I ask her “ I mean how do I allow all the pain in the world to be there and still keep goin' and still have hope?”
“ Why do you feel like you have to do something with this Cara?”She asks.
“ Holding it, feeling it is so hard. I don't want to just ignore it, or pretend that it's not there. That feels so disrespectful.” I say “ And yet, the longer I dwell in this space, the more despair I feel and the less hope I have.” I sigh deeply.
“ Cara,” she rests her head on top of mine “do you want to pretend that these things do not happen in the world? Do you ignore the darkness that exists?
“ No, of course not, thats why I'm feeling so hopeless. I feel like there is so much wrong and it's just to big for me to hold anymore”
“ Who are you holding it for Cara? Who are you holding all this pain for? What are you holding it for? What does this do? Whom does it serve?” she asks me so many questions I feel lost.
“ Ursa, I am holding this, because it's the way I feel. I have picked it up and really looked at all of it, and I don't feel like I can just put it down, putting it down doesn't change it, doesn't make it better, doesn't mend it. I feel like I should do something, something that would ease the way I feel, and make a tangible difference to these things that have touched me.”
“ ahh,” Ursa says “ You want to make these things go away, you want to fix them?Are they yours to fix?”she asks me, pulling back from me to look into my eyes.
I sigh “ I guess they are not mine to fix, but Ursa these things need to change. They do not serve anyone, not life, not spirit, not anything. All they do is hurt and break more things.” I stare back at her and know she understands. “ it's so hard to have hope and to believe in people and the future when I see so many things that are corrupted. My anger bites hard at me when I look at the greed that motivates these people, it tears at my soul when I see the apathy of people who continue to do nothing. I don't want to be one of the people who does nothing Ursa, but I don't know what to do...” I look down unseeing.
“ Cara, we have spoken of this before. This is the value shift that needs to occur before the larger world can change. You ask me what can you do? How can you hold onto hope, when the despair feels bigger? I would ask you, what is the smallest thing you can do? What is the one action that you know you can do to put peace and hope in your heart?” She cups my face gently in her massive paws and looks into my eyes.
I sigh deeply and gaze at her, searching “ The smallest thing..” I say thinking. “I don't know Ursa, I feel divided. If I find peace, hope, have I let down the part of me that feels the need to help?”I ask
“Cara, You don't always have to do big things, and you don't always have to be doing something to fix everything else. The smallest thing you can do is say 'I see you, I feel for you, your hurting has reached me.' this gives a voice to the grieving. This acknowledges it.” She strokes my hair and soothes me.
“ What do I do next?” I ask.
Ursa smiles at me , she releases my face from her grasp and exhales. “ Cara, tell me what you can do? Tell me what choices you will make to change the current of your own life? Everything in life is about the choices you make. You can not make choices for anyone but yourself.” She raises a paw to stop me before I speak “ Do not go off on a tangent here, I know that there are societal laws that you do not concur with, I am talking about the choices that you can make to live in reciprocity and peace with your inner and outer worlds. What can you do, just you, to try and make a small difference and know that you are making an effort on behalf of your little corner of the world.”
“I think the first thing I have to do is deal with my perspective. How I look at things. The overwhelm comes when I feel like they are so much bigger than me. I can not force change, I can only engage people in discussion and point out things. Your right thou, I can not own their choices. Thats the hardest. Because I know that some of the choices they make, are what makes the problems. But thats not mine. Okay Ursa, it comes back to what I can and can not do. The illusion of control and the holding onto the thoughts that some day people will see they can not live as if the whole world is disposable and here for them to beat with all their rage and brokenness.” I see deeper and feel my chest begin to loosen.

“ Your perspective Cara allows you to choose to focus on what you can do, instead of what you can't and that is the first and hardest step.” Ursa says in a gentle voice.

Sorrow Grey 


Diane in AR said...

Oh Sorrow, there are no words - thank you for sharing yours . .

Grace said...

Reading this was like reading a conversation I've had with myself recently, only SO much more eloquently and tenderly. Just as of the end of last week, I'm making some small shifts that I hope will increase my own hope and peace for the world...for my world. No more news (or as little as possible as still function at my job). Listen to uplifting music. Stay present. Show respect to all...(not easy when I inherently disapprove of what they stand for). Reading this will help me and others who feel the same overwhelm when faced with a certain "REALITY". Thank you , dear friend.

wholly jeanne said...

I love eavesdropping when Ursa and Cara talk. I just love it. And my take-away is just the reminder I needed right now: tend to my own world, pluck the weeds, purge the stuff and dust what's left, smile, dance, be kind . . . all metaphors, of course.

Susie Keeth said...

There is such an authentic warmth in Ursa's hugs that I could feel her gentle paws on your shoulders from here.....such noble qualities of compassion, wisdom and gratitude. Ahhhhh......I too love to listen in on the conversations between you and Ursa because they always make me a better person having heard them. Smiling hugely as I picture that big loving bear rubbing your back and tickling your cheeks.