Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Blog Index

From Hopelessness to Hope

The title above is the title from my sons Meditation class last week...then he went on to say.."I have hope!  We are living in difficult times.  Sounds familiar doesn’t it, bearing a vague sense of the past rushing forward into the present; generations before us have expressed similar sentiments. Yet something stands out for me about the current climate of violence and social suffering.  Maybe it feels uniquely problematic in relationship to my own sense that it should have changed by now.  Maybe I’m surprised and caught off guard by how little the landscape of prejudice has shifted.  Maybe I’m surprised that my own allegiance to the lineage of Buddhism, which advocates for wisdom and kindness, has yet to shape a new western culture as I had thought it might when I was a teenager.  But also perhaps being awake means being unwilling to remain asleep to the truth of injustice, violence and socially constructed racism.  And maybe its okay that it is painful and confusing right now.  Transformation on the contemplative path is not about being comfortable, though we can fall into this wrong view easily." Each time we meet, we meditate and then Chris does a talk and we have a small discussion.  This was an important talk and many people were able to express their feelings about the hopelessness that they sometimes feel and the lack of being able to do something on a large scale to help others to find hope...

I have said this many times on my blog and I live it each day as best I can.  I have signs in my house to remind me and my family that KINDNESS matters.  It doesn't matter what the rest of the world is doing, it only matter what you are doing. Maybe we can't solve the problems of the world on a large scale but we are capable of helping our neighbors and all the people that we come into contact with, just by showing a bit of the end of Chris's talk and our discussion, he read to us short essay called Cause and Effect- the Huffington Post response to Orlando..I'd like to share that with you now so that maybe through these words, you will find a small way to spread your own KINDNESS and by reaching out to each other, we may all find some hope going forward...and let go of the hopelessness..

Cause and Effect- Huffington Post to Orlando

It's time we shot back and righted the wrong. It's time we killed our culture of hatred with kindness. The only proper response to Orlando, and the only response that can avenge the deaths of 49 young men and women, is to wield the arms of compassion and fight back.  If each bullet was an act of hatred, an expression of the destruction of humanity, then we need to respond with the acts of universal kindness, compassion and creation.

We can not revive our dead, but we can change the course of history.  the planting of a tree, or smiling and encouraging a child, is a deadly salvo of kindness fired at the heart of hatred.  Buying the next person in line a cup of coffee, or thanking a veteran or first responder for their service, is a shinning monument to human goodness standing against Omar Mateen's barrage of bullets.  Reaching out to a family member and asking them how they're doing, or picking up a piece of litter on the side of the road, is a cannonade of consideration that can blow away the ash of nihilism in the souls of those around us.

The truth is, if you believe that the universe is governed by cause and effect, then you have to also believe in the profound consequences of our kindness.  We can not revive our dead, but we can change the course of history.  It's time we confronted the politics of hate with the politics of love.

My challenge to you is this: for each person murdered by Omar Mateen, commit one act of kindness. If you don't know any gay people, go to a pride celebration this month and give someone a hug. If you don't know any Muslims, go a mosque and tell someone they are wonderful. Break out of your daily norm. Burst out of the chains of your indifference and feel the warm sunlight of brotherhood. Only kindness can unite us. If we all join together and make the world a little bit kinder, then we can turn the poison of Orlando into a medicine for all mankind.

The meditation session left me thinking about the planet we are walking on and what our responsibility to it and each other is.  I have most always chosen Kindness as my guiding light. I will admit, I haven't always been perfect at it, but now is the time to express our kindness more fully, deeply and honestly, than we have ever done before...The future of our children and grandchildren are depending on us.  They are "watching"...don't let them down..

 The Quote from the first paragraph is by my son Chris Crotty.



PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (1)

I take tremendous comfort in the sentiments of this post and the offerings of your son, Cheryl, who is a very wise man -- which does not surprise me in the least. My feeling is that sensitive souls struggle with hopelessness because sometimes it feels as though the social norms that keep baser and crueler instincts at bay are loosening and it is becoming less acceptable to degrade and hurt others in any number of ways. When another is hurt, I hurt too. But still, there are many people who live differently --- who practise kindness and who won't stay quiet when their fellow human beings are debased. You -- and Chris -- and all those like you do give me great hope.

August 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSherry G.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>
« From A Service Project to a Love Project | Main | Boys, Camera's and the Audubon »