Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Election, Afterglow, Love

I cried last night.  So many victories in U.S. politics.  Marriage equality in Maine, Michigan, Maryland, and Washington.  President Obama re-elected.  There are many things he supports that I don't, but in my mind he is mostly a good and true leader and human being, doing the best he can with our (in my mind) pretty f'd system.  Tammy Baldwin, the first openly gay senator (and a woman!) was elected.  Elizabeth Warren is still on the senate.  I know this is a good thing because my brilliant liberal friends rejoiced when it happened, but in all honesty I know little about her.  PBS and Planned Parenthood are safe from Mitt's slimy paws.  Vaginas everywhere breathe satisfied sighs of relief.

from Barak Obama's facebook page

In California, we had ballot measures I cared about (and understood!), such as repealing the death penalty (this failed, and I am the tiniest bit dumbfounded.  Maybe because I am not a fan of killing?  Maybe because many innocent people end up executed?), ramping up trafficking penalties (this passed, which I am not happy about.  Why?  Read this article.), funding for schools (prop 30, the better of two initiatives, passed!), and the labeling of GMO foods (failed).  

After the election, I was elated.  Obama in office, gay marriage accepted in several more states (this takes our count up to 11!), a gay lady in on the senate, and a surprisingly gracious concession speech from Romney.  

from HRC's facebook page

This country, the subject of so many of my rants, made some big progress last night.

It's something, but we have more to do.

Big corporations control our food (not to mention our farmers) and our tongues are too slow to ask where it's coming from, what's in it.  There are still 49 states without basic civil rights for many humans in our population.  We're still engaged in wars, using too much oil, wasting so much of our food (if we can call much of what we eat "food"), and largely ignoring climate change and global warming. 

I want to be part of the solution.  I don't want a life on the sidelines, armchair activism and apathy, charges to which I both plead guilty.  It's not as though I am living a particularly terrible life, impacting our world in a negative way, but I want to contribute lovingly and passionately, live in this community of human beings and work toward positive change.  And yet.  Sometimes I stop and wonder.  How much of the earth is in our hands, how much of this world, so weary, rests on our shoulders?


Do you want to improve the world?
I don't think it can be done.

The world is sacred.
It can't be improved.
If you tamper with it, you'll ruin it.
If you treat it like an object, you'll lose it.

There is a time for being ahead,
a time for being behind;
a time for being in motion,
a time for being at rest;
a time for being vigorous,
a time for being exhausted;
a time for being safe,
a time for being in danger.

The Master sees things as they are,
without trying to control them.
She lets them go their own way,
and resides at the center of the circle.

-Tao Te Ching

Is this the answer, or just some kind of copout?  What is the difference between acceptance and apathy, detachment and denial?

I might not have the answers to these questions, but a similar answer keeps coming up for me, and it has to do with (surprise, surprise) the heart.

from peaceflash's facebook page

In these times of uncertainty and triumph (have there ever been any other times?), may all of our actions spring from that still-beating place.  May we all tend to our hearts and the earth—and easy on the roundup, please.  The seeds have been planted, they are our true nature, and these seeds need our careful cultivation.  May we sing to what we sow with a mind set on peace, and bloom in deep kindness.  May we be the instruments of this peace, marching ever onward and inward.  And may love, of all things, prevail.  Please.  Let us let this great love prevail.