Holding the tension of opposites: what to do when you don’t know what you can possibly do

There aren’t really the right words when the world is in such a state of chaos and tragedy. In the face of unthinkable violence we feel deep pain. Or we go numb with the enormity of it.

We want to know what we can do to help. For some of us the answer might be a sense of powerlessness; not knowing what to do. The one thing – sometimes the only thing – we have control over is what goes on inside of us and how we express from that place. How we show up.

We may not have the answers. We may not be able to erase or change the horror of what happened, but we can hold those affected close to our hearts and send energy to help hold them up.

We can imagine a world of peace. We can bring up all the love within us and share it with those around us and those we encounter. We can live from loving kindness and compassion; turning the expression of goodness outward and inward toward ourselves. We can pull our loved ones close.

And we can hold the tension of the opposites: meaning we draw ourselves forth from the numbness to look at the ugliness and terror of what is not right in our world. We look right at it and we ask sincerely, “What can I do to help change it?” Yet we don’t succumb to the darkness of its quicksand-like pull; thinking that’s the reality of what is and what needs to be – what will always be. That’s just one horrific piece. We also draw forth the compassion and the love and we put its inextinguishable light right next to the horrible darkness.

We let them coexist.

And if enough of us refuse to be afraid of the darkness … if enough of us stay awake … if enough of us bring forth the light, how will our world change? I hope, pray, and trust it will. May we rise from the ashes stronger and healthier.

To those touched by darkness, I send you a glimmer of light. It’s at least one small piece. And it’s what I CAN do.

love,
Donna