In 1998 I discovered Yoga, Buddhism and Meditation. Over time, they became my self-care and then my spiritual practices.
Buddhism began to transform the way I saw the world, other people and myself. Compassion became a major intention in my life– along with concepts like interconnection and non-attachment. My relationship to activism began to shift.
My desire for change began to come from a place of love and compassion instead of anger and judgement.
I still ache to heal our world.
But I’ve discovered another way to to go about activism, what I call Pro-Activism, commonly called Spiritual Activism or Engaged Buddhism.
I’ve become more selective about the activist events I choose to attend. I don’t go to “protests” anymore, but I will still rally, demonstrate and vigil.
To some, a protest and rally may seem like the same thing, but to me the emotion and intention behind them are different.
A protest encourages anger, frustration and separation. A rally, encourages hope, inspiration and unity!
Mother Teresa once said, when invited to an “anti-war” rally: “I will never attend an anti-war rally; if you have a pro-peace rally, invite me.”
Explore this in your body for a moment:
Take time to sit up tall and take a few deep breaths.
Bring to mind the word WAR and notice what arises afterwards. What happens in your body and in your mind when you reflect on the word WAR? How does it make you feel?
Now sit up tall and think “PEACE”. Notice the difference? In your body and in your mind?
So now I am about to get a little “woo woo” on you (I am a Yoga teacher after all, it’s sort of in the handbook.)
Words contain power, which is why singing, praying & chanting have such a energetic effect on us as a human family and on the planet. What you tell yourself or focus on shows up in the world.
The universe tends to respond to the energy and vibration that you put out and send you more of whatever you’re putting out.
Because of this, I am very careful about not only what events I go to, but also what words will chant.
When we come to activism from a place of being interconnection, pro-action and healing, we’re not only happier and healthier ourselves, but affect the world for the better on a global scale.
Of course, this is easy to understand logically, but harder to practice.
I’m not saying I have this mastered. Yet, I do my best to be conscious in my activism.