The power of visibility

Image by Mona Kendra on Unsplash

Image by Mona Kendra on Unsplash

If you can see it ... you can clear it.

It’s one of the most basic principles of working with energy, and it’s been a source of hope for me throughout our current political, economic and social climate.

As a nation and as a society, we've been careening for centuries toward this explosive moment in time. And for centuries, we’ve managed to sweep under the rug our most shameful acts of oppression and aggression—either because those on the receiving end of the atrocities had no platform or because those in power succeeded in concealing the fruits of their greed.

But our world is different now. “The veils have thinned” is not an idle phrase: The only meaningful barriers exist in our perception. At any moment, we can choose to see beyond the matrix of our mind. Because one by one, its mechanisms are failing on the scale of our collective awareness. “Failing” because more of us are choosing to see with our heart instead of just our eyes. “Failing” because the light in us is getting brighter, which means the dark in us is getting bolder (and more careless).

So rather than panic and rant about how awful things are (though awful they may be) we can see our reality for what it is: energy. All of it. All mutable, all transformable.

Until now, perhaps we couldn’t see what we wanted or needed to change. But the opportunities are crystal clear now, thanks to some very unapologetic actors. I send some gratitude (mixed with anger and outrage) to these brazen figures for removing any doubt about what has been going on behind the scenes for a long time. I see the issues now. So that means now I can respond according to my conscience. 

Indeed, only when we see the truth can we clear out and destroy what does not help us love more deeply, extend our compassion and tend to our growth. So right now, we can't let this opportunity for creating a major shift pass us by. Now is the time to speak, to share, to love each other through the darkness.

Of course, "speaking out" will mean something very specific to each of us, and that's part of the journey we're on. I’m still searching for more outlets, but I’ll share a few things I’ve been trying in case they inspire you to try new things as well. 

  1. Writing to my state representatives via @resistbot (text “Resist” to 50409). I’m embarrassed to say I waited this long to communicate with the people I voted for. I had all kinds of excuses mainly having to do with a lack of understanding about how the process worked. A couple of days ago, I ran out of excuses thanks to @resistbot. A 5-minute text “conversation” with an automated system later, I had shared my views with multiple representatives. I can’t wait to keep texting (you can do it as many times as you want). For once, the gods of technology have smiled on me. 
  2. Talking to people whose life experiences differ drastically from my own. The potent combination of my white privilege and Midwestern politeness has rendered me mute on more than one occasion, and made me feel I had no right to connect or commune with people of color. I don’t mean I’ve never interacted outside my circle. I have dear friends and colleagues who come from different cultural, racial, and religious backgrounds. But that doesn’t mean I’ve done the hard, necessary, lifelong work of talking about and starting to heal the cycle of fear, shame, oppression, privilege and persecution wound so tightly in our society. I really have no idea where to begin, and that’s part of the challenge. But I have reached out to a couple of people who post their views on social media, and who say things I find hard to hear about ways I might be perpetuating the cycle. I don’t want to think I’m part of the problem, but it’s up to me to face the truth if I am. I can’t clear it if I can’t see it. And my own goggles of perception aren’t going to be the right prescription for that viewing. I need help, so I’ve asked for it. More to come on this point, I’m sure. 
  3. Meditating more. On an energetic level, we are not the physical characteristics that separate us. We’re all one energy (albeit energy that has individuated for the purpose of spiritual growth and development). In meditation, I get to play in this field of possibility. Try it! You'll like it. 
  4. Being a soft landing for those who are hurting. It doesn’t do anyone any good to judge another person's pain or reaction to that pain. That’s just common sense and good manners. But the more I work with people in a professional capacity as a healer, the more I find myself doing things differently in my personal life. For example: Casual judgment (even in jest) becomes a social liability instead of a bonding experience. Pain and suffering become opportunities to explore why something hurts. Joy becomes an exercise in expansion—not just a chance to indulge a feeling. I guess the common thread here is mindfulness. That is, awareness of the power I have to affect someone’s energy, and the power I have to effect change. I strive to show my clients how these power dynamics function. Each time I do so, I deepen my understanding of how they function in my actual life. Which is precisely why I do this work, and that brings me to my final (for the moment) point.
  5. Being in service. When it comes from a desire to create more peace and understanding, serving others is freedom in the absolute. I’m fortunate to have found a way to serve by helping people heal. More challenging—but also really fun and kind of addictive—has been finding little ways of serving others in individual moments. One of the ways I’m trying to do this right now is by having fewer opinions. I know it sounds strange, but opinions tend to divide, rather than unite. That doesn’t mean I don’t get to have values or principles. It just means I don’t get to make snap judgments about things I hear people say. A fringe benefit of having fewer opinions is that I get to practice listening a lot more, because I’m not jumping in as frequently with a counterpoint. Are there awkward silences? You bet. But I’m finding some tolerance of these as well. Silence is really just space, and we need space to grow into ourselves. So for now, I’m going to keep practicing.