“You can’t shake hands with a clenched fist.” ~ Indira Gandhi
Well, life has definitely thrown me a couple of loops these last few weeks, so getting this post written has not been the easiest thing to do. Although, to be totally honest, I think it was going to be hard anyway because physical fighting and abuse are, luckily for me, just not a part of my every day life. And it’s kind of hard to find a way to avoid something that isn’t there to begin with, even in the name of raising consciousness.
So I am going to let myself off the hook again, and rather than rack my brain for something I can do to ‘Avoid Physical Fighting and Abuse’, I am going to share Martin Luther King and Mahatma Gandhi’s ‘Joint Principles of Non-Violence‘, which I came across the other day as I searched the internet for some inspiration. I can’t think of any better way to raise my consciousness this week than to reflect on these principles, and try to incorporate them into my own life:
JOINT (GANDHI-KING) PRINCIPLES OF NON-VIOLENCE
1. Non-violence means to honor the inherent worth of every human being. In non-violence we naturally seek to understand each other, build friendship and community.
2. Non-violence means believing that our lives are linked together, that what we do impacts the lives of everyone we encounter. That we are responsible to and for one another. That we can trust one another and work toward the common good.
3. Non-violence means dedicating ourselves to the fundamental rights of every human being (Justice, Equity, Equality)
4. Non-violence is courageously choosing to practice compassion with our adversaries. We oppose injustice, not people.
5. Non-violence means recognizing love as the power of the human spirit to triumph over injustice, inequity, suffering; a true hero’s journey of personal-social change.
It is my fervent hope that in the new year before us, these principles find their way into everyone’s heart (especially those who are in power!). I totally believe that we are at a tipping point right now, and with some courage, and a little shift in the right direction, we will find ourselves in the world that Gandhi and Dr. King envisioned.
I heard this song by Tracy Chapman the other day, called New Beginning, and the words offered me hope that a more peaceful world really is possible:
“We can break the cycle – We can break the chain.
We can start all over – In the new beginning
We can learn, we can teach.
We can share the myths, the dream, the prayer.
The notion that we can do better.
Change our lives and paths.
Create a new world.”
So in this season of hope and peace, I am going to make an early new year’s resolution that in 2012 I will be brave, and help make the shift to a better world happen.