you If we cured anxiety and depression, wouldn’t we cure war and cruelty? Or, in other words, if we were healed and whole and our worries tended to and our tender parts loved on, wouldn’t we not want to hurt ourselves or each other?
I’m not saying that flippantly, and, although I always suspect that I am naive because of my privilege, I mean it. As best I can tell, love and tenderness is the solution.
My most rotten behavior comes from a source of pain and insecurity. I have to believe that’s true for most everyone? Even enormously powerful political people? Wink wink trying to find some mercy here wink wink? Even guerrilla religious fighters who light children on fire to prove their authority?
Maybe? Can there be this many sociopaths who found each other and formed political parties/cults? Or is it just fear collected, reincarnated as dangerous power and violence?
We’re afraid we’re secretly not worthy, we’re afraid we’re secretly bad, so we show our teeth and puff up our chests and strike hard. We ruin others to prove we’re getting something right.
It’s fucked up.
In my experience as a social worker and medical provider and person, when I’ve engaged with ‘difficult people’ in a rage or a huff or who are spinning out of control, there’s usually a source of fear at the center of it. When I’m able to find that, and hold it kind of gently with them, and then slowly, carefully, start to step with them down a simple path, one small solution at a time, they can start to breathe and simmer the rage. It can stop their anger or ill intentions in their tracks.
Why are you yelling? What are you afraid of?
Why did you hit me? What is worrying you?
Why are you cold and mean? Why do you feel alone?
Why do you hate people? Who hurt you?
Why are you trying to overpower and own? Who told you you weren’t good enough?
We can keep passing on the hurt, fist-over-fist, from one generation to the next, or we can somehow get to the core of it and save each other.
I’m trying to keep my head down but heart up. I’m hiding a little bit. Avoiding the news. Avoiding the hard stuff. Avoiding the crushing realities of the powerful people who are mad at the rest of us for not being one of them. I’m afraid that there’s no Batman to save us. I’m afraid that there’s no God.
There’s a whole hella of a lot of “why?” going on. Why? Why? Why?
All I ever seem to conclude about people is we need to find each other’s hurt and validate it and try to love them through it.
So, I think we’re trying. I’m seeing people rush to help others a little more right now. I think the result of us all being terrified that we can’t fix the big injustices and hurts is that we’re trying to relieve some of the little ones. People are donating funds, time, showing more kindness to people on the streets, maybe. The Midwest lost power and friends and neighbors and even grocery stores are offering to take cold foods, to shelter people.
Human efforts seem bolder, hastier, less hesitant than business as usual.
I guess that’s what we can do. LOVE HARDER. REACH DEEPER. FORGIVE AND LOVE YOURSELF, it might save others.
That’s all I got.