Wisdom Story of the Month: Living In Interesting Times
Updated: Jul 28, 2020
Recently I have been thinking of the phrase “May You Live In Interesting Times.” Some say it is an ancient Chinese curse, although there appears to be no real proof of that. The analog of this well-known bromide is one of my favorite sayings—“It’s a blessing and a curse.”
When we look at the potential virus pandemic facing our world and the tumultuous political scene in our country we have reason to feel unsettled and off-kilter. Who can blame us?
Perhaps these times are an opportunity—to see all of the wrongs in our world laid bare so we may go about the messy business of correction. Clearly we are part of a collective, a whole; our fates inextricably bound together—even with those we see as so different from ourselves as to be almost unrecognizable. What that means to me is that each individual has a responsibility to do their own work so that they may grow and remain grounded and be a spark of hope and light in dark times. There are many ways to do this—from starting a gratitude practice (even for a minute a day), meditation, breathwork, connection with loved ones, etc. Take the time to remind yourself of all the skills and tools at your disposal to deal with difficult experiences. Remind yourself that hate is a bitter pill to swallow and positive action is a great antidote to fear.
I am reminded of the writing of Clarissa Pinkola Estes, author of Women Who Run With the Wolves, who said:
“Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely. It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom, will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good.
One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Soul on deck shines like gold in dark times. The light of the soul throws sparks, can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to catch fire. To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these – to be fierce and to show mercy toward others; both are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity.
Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do.”
One thing is for sure—we are living in interesting times. I think we are up for the challenge. Join us at the Sattva Wisdom Center and we can go through these times together!
Love and light,