talk about perspective.
grateful for a friend who shared this, and did so acknowledging the tragedy of what happened in boston today but did so in a compassionate and respectful context.
sharing my rambling response to her and her post because it’s bits and pieces of the many conversations and reactions i’m having and overhearing as folks wrap their heads around today’s tragedy in boston:
was outside working in the yard with my parents when i heard my phone buzzing on the back deck. when i checked, it was messages from a couple of folks in boston checking in to let people know they were “ok.” i had no idea the context at that time.
just came in a little while ago ‘cause i got worried once i found out, from them and others posting updates. couldn’t stay focused on the work i was doing while waiting to hear back from others i know who were participating or come out to support.
and i ended up getting caught up in a couple of conversations online with folks who were on various ends of the spectrum… some being slightly dismissive of sympathy being expressed for today’s tragedy in boston because bombs explode across the world, many of them with the blood on america’s hands… and where is the collective outcry and outpouring of sympathy for those affected?
on the other hand, i was also moved by folks who were requesting that we just be present in the moment and offer up our sympathy and compassion.
but, part of what i was reading in these threads, often between the lines, is about if/how can we function if we find ourselves constantly present with such pain, sorrow, grief, and sympathy?
how do we not feel overcome with powerlessness when there is so much tragedy on the daily? what of the daily violence and suffering inflicted by capitalism and resulting poverty and all it manifests throughout our communities and across the world?!
i find myself grappling with these questions on the daily.
the truth is, if your eyes and heart are open, every day is filled with extreme joy and sorrow.
humans are destroying the world and each other everywhere, on a daily basis.
sometimes the most we can do is just to be present to hear and witness, to hopefully learn from it. to be reminded of our own humanity and interconnectedness.
and yet, i refuse to believe that’s all we can do. and i know many of you share that belief with me.
for me, i find i need to first be in tune with my heart though and let it guide me to take action. sometimes that does mean simply listening and reflecting. and i know that, in general, my energy, skills and knowledge are most effective in focusing on how to work within my communities closer to “home” (which in itself is a complicated thing for me to define) - with many of you - to build our collective vision of a world with stronger, safer communities for all.
having been on the other end of this - in the midst of both manmade and natural disasters - i can tell you that, yes, simply knowing others cared meant a lot to me. (whether they knew me or not..sometimes especially because they did not!) just that knowledge gave me much mental and emotional strength which is a very important and necessary thing to help push through and cope with such difficult circumstances.
i’m rambling now 'cause i’m a bit worked up. my apologies. my heart is heavy, filled with sorrow. but also gratitude.
thank you, friends, for having open eyes/ears/hearts.