By Celia Coates
There are more predictions about dark times than suggestions about what to do to get through them. Because I want to know more about what’s called for, I’ve begun collecting some ideas.
Margaret Wheatley published a book in 2012 (a year approached with many, many predictions of doom) that includes some useful observations. She wrote that her book, SO FAR FROM HOME, “…was born from my clarity that greed, self-interest, and coercive power are destroying the very life force of this planet.”
But she found a way to go forward: “For many years now, I have been inspired, motivated and comforted by a prophecy that comes from Tibetan Buddhism of impending darkness and the summoning of the warriors.”
“… (M)ost cultures have the tradition of warriors, an elite class entrusted with defending the faith, the culture, or the kingdom. Warriors undergo rigorous training and display great courage, their valiant acts live on in stories that inspire people to maintain the faith and strive to be courageous.”
I am definitely not a brave person. I am not someone whose courage and valiant acts are going to live on in anybody’s stories. Rigorous warrior training? That wasn’t part of a woman’s life when I grew up. Then, thank goodness, I remembered Elmer Green talking about both Harry Potter and Tolkien’s Hobbit. Stories certainly have been told about these small people who faced the dark and became brave. Elmer said that their “smallness” and the ordinariness of the lives they’d been living before their adventures began were vitally important. Both of them became heroes by making one choice at a time and moving forward in the company of people they cared about and who cared about them. That became the power behind their achieving great things.
Carolyn Scripps also had many conversations with Elmer and recently she reminded me that he was taught that, “Every time you use free will and make a choice, you use power.” He also said, “Many do not realize when they misuse power.” There certainly is more to explore about the nature of real power.
Wheatley said that the Tibetan word for warrior, pawo, describes one who is brave but vows never to use aggression. She made a vow herself to do the best she could to keep from adding to the fear and aggression of these times:
“We are free to choose a new role for ourselves, to transform our grief, outrage, frustration, and exhaustion into the skills of insight and compassion, to serve this dark time as warriors for the human spirit.”
Many of my friends are feeling overwhelmed by the load of dark current events and are choosing to ignore most of it. That’s their own fine choice. I’m trying to find enough focus and strength not to sink under the heaviness of what has been happening and I’m almost addicted to the news. That’s a choice that increases my level of fear on many days, and although I’m trying to gain clarity through getting information, I know that increasing my level of fear helps nobody.
It seems useful to think about two levels of warriorship. The first is becoming a warrior in the world, an activist who works for the good. These are the people who, Wheatley said, “… go into the corridors of power to dismantle the beliefs and behaviors that are destroying life.”
There is another way – the inner warrior who goes within the self to dismantle the beliefs that create and sustain fear. Both levels demand courage and discipline, both are difficult and need to be combined with loving ourselves and other people. Becoming a true warrior involves both levels. Wheatley wrote:
“This global culture that we are desperate to transform is a result of the identity-driven nature of change. Random as it feels, there is a deep ordering dynamic at play, that of self making. This world has emerged from what we think we must have in order to protect ourselves and ensure our continued existence.”
Each one of us is involved in “self making” and has to find our own way to get through these times, perhaps by becoming one of the warriors who are being summoned. We can become the brave spirits that are needed now by making our own choices, discovering what’s real and true, and joining with others whenever possible.
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What are your ideas about what’s called for in these times?
Would you like to write something for WINN about your own suggestions?
Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Margaret Wheatley (Meg) has written many books. The one mentioned here is SO FAR FROM HOME: Lost and Found in Our Brave New World, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc., San Francisco, 2012.
To learn more about Elmer Green, PhD, go to www.consciousnessandbiofeedback.org
The image that accompanies this post is by monicore from Pixabay