Monday, January 28, 2013

Behind The Protests: The Quiet Place


STOP THE MEGA-QUARRY!

REPEAL BILL 115!

OCCUPY!

IDLE NO MORE!

FIGHT THE GOVERNMENT OVER OUR RIVERS AND LAKES!

The list of causes and what many would call "fights" seems to be endless these days, and we are completely saturated by them if we use social media such as Facebook and Twitter. Frankly, it's exhausting, and it can cause a sense of anxiety and almost panic if we let ourselves get overly drawn into it.

I am not saying that these and other causes are or aren't important. I currently sit on the executive of a local political party executive and we discuss all of these things and many more; we also show up at protests and write letters to politicians.

But we can get pulled into that sense of anxiety and panic to a point where it seems that we are against more than we are for. Even our ability to sleep or our overall health can suffer.

The question could be asked, "Am I creating more love and peace in this world by my actions, or am I just getting incensed?"

Maybe a breather is necessary, such as a regular meditation practice, or journaling each morning or night about the day.

Gandhi said that he would never attend an anti-war rally, but if there was a peace rally, he'd be there.

Another question that can be asked is, "What voice, what spirit do you hear when you're not being bombarded by LeadNow petitions asking you to sign this or that?" Do you have any calm in your life? Do you have 15 minutes to sit and just look out the window at the icicles melting on your balcony or the rabbit hopping through the snow? Are you taking the time to be with your Deepest Self (or God, or Spirit, or Love or Whatever You May Call It).

I encourage you take a few minutes each day to tune out social media and the pandemonium that it can feign, and truly be present, if even for a few moments. It may take some practice (as I've found), but you may be surprised at the sense of peace and love that you find in your mind and heart.

It's then that we'll be in a better place to engage the pressing issues of our world.

Mark Andrew Alward