We are hard-wired neurobehaviorally to fight or flee when faced with danger. These responses are instinctive + result from reflexive activity in the spinal cord, brain stem + limbic system. As there are many perceived + real threats posed these days (as I suppose has always been the case), there is so much fighting with (resulting in widespread + tragic death + destruction) + fleeing from (resulting in avoiding, misunderstanding + too often maligning + despising others) fellow human beings happening. And we are facing the threat of nuclear warfare + allowing regional wars and disputes to continue indefinitely. And then there's the tragic effects of human-caused climate change that promise to alter the viability of life on our beautiful island home, Earth, in the very near future. In response to these threats, we are, too many of us + collectively, freezing, not taking necessary action to change our behavior in relation to each other + the planet. So, the options seem to be to fight, flee, or freeze. Fortunately, there's a fourth F-word (no, not f%ck it) that our cerebral cortex allows us to engage in: to FACE what is happening with wisdom, memory + forethought, forthright + honest dialogue, creativity + dogged, tireless determination. For me, compassion is the key. I see myself as intricately linked to all beings, to the entire expanse of the universe + with each moment in time, past + future linked by this moment right now. I am the dying polar bear, the fleeing refugee, the bleaching reef. Fortunately, I'm also the guy who saves a scared rabbit, the person who donates an organ, I am the tree that survives the storm. And I am, at my worst, the hateful bigot + the greedy, selfish narcissist. This is my wish: that we face each other with love, patience, honesty, humility, kindness, curiosity + generosity of spirit, compassion + dignity, that we face our faults + work to overcome + correct them, that we face + see ourselves in every other living being. I am you are me are we. There is no them, we are all us. Wherever we go, we go together.
With gratitude + Love, for Peace + Justice, Kris