As the world awakens, we’re seeing lots of turmoil in the short term. Remember though, as the Peace Pilgrim has said, “We are all cells in the same body of humanity.” Self-organized transformations in one area of the world bring all of us into the company of awakening.

We’re in an era of global renewal. It’s happening in many locations simultaneously. Renewal creates cleansing which can be painful and messy. The change that’s a afoot can also motivate the old to cling to its position with tenacity. This creates further chaos. The friction of resistance to change is all over the news right now.

The most remarkable feature of this historical moment on Earth is not that we are on the way to destroying the world—we’ve actually been on the way for quite a while. It is that we are beginning to wake up, as from a millennia-long sleep, to a whole new relationship to our world, to ourselves and each other. — Joanna Macy

Whether it’s social, environmental, humanitarian, political or economic justice, a principle at the heart of Life has been activated and it’s touching all people equally. Our lives interpenetrate. How can we stay open and in balance while witnessing this tide of transformation across the globe?

Suggestions to stay balanced in era of global renewal

  • Be in gratitude. David Steindl-Rast says, “We are never more than one grateful thought away from peace of heart.” Peace of heart. Usually the term is “peace of mind.” The mind is often not as stable as the heart. The mind has too many tendrils. It needs the knowing of the heart to stabilize it. The heart is simple and strong. Stay there.
  • Know darkness is temporary. Sakyong Mipham says, “One characteristic of this dark age is that we doubt our innate goodness.” Doubt exacerbates the fear we may feel when we watch the news. We doubt that we’ll be safe. We doubt we can take effective action. We doubt we can make a difference. The truth is you are the difference. You’re one good neuron in a neural net. Shine your goodness.
  • Healing starts with one person; you. Joanna Macy says, “To heal our society, our psyches must heal as well.” Start with yourself. Take care of your own inner house. Everything you to improve the world begins within you. Attending to your own healing needs also gives you the strength and resourcefulness to change more complex conditions. And when you do, you can come from inner power and peace.
  • Deepen your spiritual practices. The I Ching says, “No revolution in outer things is possible without prior revolution in one’s inner way of being. Whatever change you aspire to in your affairs must be preceded by a change in heart, an active deepening and strengthening of your resolve to meet every event with equanimity, detachment, and innocent goodwill. When this spiritual poise is achieved within, magnificent things are possible without.” Enough said.
  • You’re not isolated. Joseph Campbell says, “We have not even to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us—the labyrinth is thoroughly known.” Earth changes now are unprecedented. At the same time, each change in each era was new to the people living then. Embrace what’s happening in the world. It’s positive, no matter how it looks presently. Know that the conscience of the world is speaking up and you’re honored to be part of it. There’s a purpose for you and a grander purpose too. Step into that.
  • Emotions run high; breathe through them. As Miriam Greenspan says, “Emotional mindfulness—the ability to stay fully attentive and befriend unwelcome emotions where they live, in the body—is essential to emotional alchemy, the process by which the lead of our worst feelings can be transmuted to golden spiritual power and wisdom.” The world itself is in an alchemical process, so much so you who are in the world need to be in it too. You’re going to have emotions about global events. Stay open to these emotions and understand them. In understanding your emotions, you understand yourself. You also get to know that while you have emotions, you are not those emotions.

Finally, Ram Dass states: “The question we need to ask ourselves is whether there is any place we can stand in ourselves where we can look at all that’s happening around us without freaking out, where we can be quiet enough to hear our predicament, and where we can begin to find ways of acting that are at least not contributing to further destabilization.”

Yes, of course there is!

These previous posts also deal with this subject:

Overwhelm and the Healer

Shifting the World the Healing Way

The Shifting World


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Suggestions to Stay Balanced in an Era of Global Renewal