Politics are in the air these days. Tis the season for debate!
One of the root meanings of politics is
the science and art of government. I fell in love with this definition because of its truth. Political parties hold both a science to their platforms as well as an art and personally, I wish we had more discussion about the science and the art rather than the argument over opponents.
I pondered one day…
Could it be that the reason why politics brings up strong emotions of fear, blame, anger, and tribalism is that countries usually begin as a result of war?
Maybe we hold some responsibility for holding on to those energies. Maybe?
As a child, I was often a witness to my parents arguing. These childhood traumas have been a huge part of my life’s pain and misery. But, like with all of life’s adventures, the pain gave me a gift. I am often able to see both sides of an argument.
I see where the hypocrisy or ego creeps in and where the beauty lies. Let’s just say, I am not a black and white thinker. I am gray all the way – for better and for worse.
From my perspective:
Republicans believe Democrats want to take over your lives. They want your money and control of you. They want to take away your rights. Is that true? Is that really true?
Democrats think Republicans are rich white men wanting to get richer on the backs of minorities and women. Is that true? Is that really true?
Do those who fight for choice really want to kill babies? Are all those who fight for life haters of choice? One side wants to control guns but not define the beginning of life.
The other wants to control the complexities of a woman’s narrative and yet believes in choice when it comes to weapons.
It’s not as important who’s right and who’s wrong. Each of our journeys has brought us to where we are. Each of us has put political questions into our own personal equations and have found our result – our answers. And, in the United States, we have a constitutional right to speak our thoughts and ideas in safety and that isn’t always the case around the world.
We need to hold reverence for that.
Get out a pen and paper or pull up a note on your phone.
Write down three things you believe in for this country. Your country.
Why do democratic or liberal values speak to you?
Or, what republican or conservative ideals give you goosebumps?
What does being an independent or other party mean to you?
Write them down. Own your ideals. They are important to you and to the whole of the country. Draw pictures if the words don’t come. But, really put some thought into this for a moment.
Take time to BE with YOUR thoughts and opinions.
Notice the anger, fear, and judgments that arise.
Don’t try to justify them or change them but just notice.
Notice if it’s your voice you are truly hearing or if another has influenced you.
Is that influence a good thing? Maybe it is or isn’t.
We are all on a journey to wholeness. We need each other’s differences.
One of my favorite comedians, Hannah Gadsby says “difference is a teacher”
Often we want to pull away from different. Often we vilify different. Isn’t it really true that different is our teacher?
Where would we be if sameness was all we knew. Really challenge sameness thinking. Our ego wants us to believe in sameness. It thinks being the same is safe. But we are adventurous creatures and adventure requires some risk.
So, Risk seeing another’s perspective. Really put yourself in their shoes.
The worst that could happen is more gratitude for the place you reside in.
In September I drove across the country to take my son to his first station in the United States Air Force in Washington DC. It was such a pleasure to see the different beauties of this country. Some places had many dense trees and other's wide-open fields for miles and I couldn’t tell you which was more inviting. We talked to many different people with many different accents and they each held their own kind of greatness. In downtown Charlotte making conversation with a homeless man of color, I teared up as he thanked my son for his service to the country.
That moment in humanity is what we should be all about.
Watch the vieo below and as you watch and listen feel united as a people blessed to live in this beautiful nation. Pledge to add not subract to its beauty.