Enlightenment In the Crowd

We are here to awaken from our illusion of separateness.

– Thich Nhat Hanh

One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it.

– Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Hope is like a road in the country: there was never a road, but when many people walk on it, the road comes into existence.

– Lin Yutang

Consider a recent moment when the crowd woke you up.  Remember that split second when a sound caught your attention, the smile on another helped you notice your own furrowed brow, or the movement of a child or dog brought a warmth to your chest?

Where did you come from?

Where did you come from?

And remember how any one of these instant happenings called you into the perfect okay-ness of that moment, the aliveness of you in that fraction of a second.  You alive, awake, capable and present.

Whirling in Konya with Rumi

Whirling in Konya with Rumi

I love these moments.

Their simplicity always catches me by surprise.  The contrast I feel within myself is startling: the before moment (when I was “asleep”) and the now moment, when I’m my being knows it’s alive.

I can spend great chunks of a day in the guise of awakeness (typing at my computer, plowing through a to-do list), only to have a moment like one I’ve mentioned, jar me into a much higher state of appreciation and gratitude.  And here’s the thing: I rarely bring this about by myself.  It happens in the crowd.  It happens because consciously, and inadvertently, we do it for each other.  It’s a team sport, this collective act of calling each other to attention.

It’s a vulnerable thing to admit.  We’re in the age of do-it-yourself, each to her own, and be social (but do it alone, communicating with your hand-held device).  Who wants to make eye contact and risk being ignored, rejected or accused.

And then, that flash of humanity surprises us.  Our simple, fragile, resilient, miraculous humanness is reflected in the same fragile, silly, strong miraculousness of another.  Friends, one another is what we have.  Our togetherness is what will save us.

Remember this?

2014 Vision Board Manifesto

2014 Vision Board Manifesto

(It’s the 2014 Sacred Activism manifesto that “appeared” as an addendum on my vision board for this year.)   My posts over the last 10 months have explored certain lines: Express yourself, Begin Again, Build Intimacy.  And now?

Get Cheeky.  Grow a Movement…It takes a Village.

All signs suggest we have done it.  We have created the “Climate Movement.”  At last.  And the Movement, despite opposition, has galvanized enough support, representing enough diversity to actually steer the conversation.  After months of speaking up, sitting in, calling, writing and acting out, the Climate Movement impressed upon the US Senate that, for all sorts of reasons, the Keystone XL pipeline is a very bad idea.

So many voices were at the table for this conversation…and there are so many conversations happening right now, on so many levels where your voice is needed.  You, me, all of us.  So, the next time you’re in line for your coffee, or sitting on the train, or feeling shy in a conversation with the one who might have a different opinion, invite enlightenment!

Now’s your chance.   Please…

Get Cheeky (optional, but often quite fun),

Grow a Movement.  We are a Village.