I was asked about hope recently, and days later I realised the question was still rolling around through the levels of my consciousness...
The thing is that I've read a lot, thought a lot, and felt a lot of different things about hope, and adjacent concepts, at this time in the world. From Beyond Hope, to walking the line between False Optimism and Angry Nihilism, to Stubborn Optimism, Action as the Antidote to Despair, and Active Hope - not just sitting and passively hoping that Someone Somewhere will Do Something - but indeed just getting on and doing The Next Right Thing, if we even might Dare to Hope.........
And another little while later, in this moment now, I'm currently sitting some with an idea that has now come to me as Bold Hope.
This sort of followed for me from the idea of Daring to Hope (how even dare I in this day and age!?! but yes I Stubbornly do, I refuse to Despair and stay there), in combination with Boldness, which popped unexpectedly and surprisingly into my head a few weeks back in response to the journal prompt "One character trait I am working on is..." posed by my dear co-facilitator Marta in a Good Grief reunion.
Boldness, once it had arrived, struck me as an interesting follow on from Confidence, which has been a mission of the last years, in association with some clearing of some probably unnecessary Hesitation, while retaining the very necessary Listening, and Collaboration, Emergence, Consensus, and Process, Patience, Silence, Stillness, Care, Clarity, Intention, Attention, and Waiting for the Right Time...
Boldness says, The Time is Now. And it says, Go Forth. It says, We Know the Answers already. It says, indeed, let us get on and Do The Next Right Thing. It is only the endless distractions that are obfuscating and slowing us down. Let us Stand Up Together and Speak Our Truth. Truth that is undeniable leads the way. We already know in our hearts what really matters. We have always known. We Know.
Mustn't we dare, indeed, to boldly hope that more of All of that is Good can indeed become and just keep becoming, just keep growing.
And so we also Boldly take the time, make the time, to Listen, and Collaborate. We step Boldly out of our Comfort Zones, into the Growth Zone, and into the Emergent. And we Decide with Consensus, with due attention to, and time for, Process, with Patience, Silence, Stillness, Care, Clarity, Intention, Attention, and Waiting for the Right Time... For "the times are urgent, let us slow down."
So yes, there's a whole landscape out there of hope. And I'd say for me at least, it has been, and continues to be, definitely well worth exploring.
So from there, what would I pull out from all that... The musings that followed surprised me, though retrospectively I don't really know why, because indeed it is these undeniable truths that always return, anchors that they are...
I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Love is definitely the answer. And also referred to in "Beyond Hope" as the reason for it all, though for me I also retain hope, hope as I understand it, hope that I am not beyond, though perhaps it's all a matter of definition, and decision...
Love just is the best reason we may possibly have to do what we do. Even when that may lead us different ways, because maybe we don't have all the answers, even when we all know Truth, Love can be our guide, and Love is the ultimate reason, for it all really.
Here and Now
Practising ways to keep returning to here and now, to calm, to connection, to witnessing - both the loss and suffering, and all the grief that comes with that, and also the incredible miracles that abound, everywhere, in every single moment of existence.
This is a skill that can be built with practice. And this skill is necessary. So I continue to practise it. Practise practise practise. And it does get easier, more natural, more effortless, more present, always, even beneath the myriad challenges of life in this here and now in which we find ourselves, that pull us to the past - with grief or sorrow, or to the future - with anxiety and fear. All at once, we can still, always - underneath, above, within, all through - be Here And Now. So practise practise practise, getting closer, always, to perfect. There's no other way. Walk and notice beauty, treat yourself with self-compassion as you observe what is going on in your body, choose from the million forms of meditation or movement, the million ways to return, to self, to soul, to heart, to connection, to oneness, to being, to here and now.
Healing, and Choice
We have to do the work. Constantly. Because the grief, the trauma, the suffering, the pain is ongoing, and there is much of it already in the world. We live in a damaged world, damaged by the culture that surrounds us, engulfs us, until it is almost impossible to escape. And escape in the form of escapism, the easiest escape, does not heal. It only delays. The only way is through. And to go through we must Do the Work.
What does this look like? Many things to many people. We have so much we can access to find what it is that we need, but the most important thing is to follow what feels right inside. That is what makes it hard and what makes it easy at the same time. We hold it all within us. And the help is there (eg. here). :-) One step at a time, we can work it through. And another step, and work it through again.
And that begins with a choice. The choice to begin.
And then... Keep choosing.
And a wise woman once told me the three keys for transformation are breath, sound, and movement. So they are always a good place to start.
And Listening. Listening to our bodies, listening to our hearts, listening to our intuition, listening to our souls, listening to knowing, listening to truth, listening to wisdom, listening to spirit, listening to the divine, listening to elders, to ancestors, to the more-than-human, and to the voice of future beings. Listening to those who have never forgotten.
Magic, and Holding the Vision
Along with holding strong to the beauty, the connection, the community we can find in this moment, we can hold strong to a vision of which way we go from here.
This is how change happens. We make it happen. Together.
And it begins with intention, and attention. Our will for the greater good.
And this is true magic. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, I do believe in magic.
Everything is possible.
For me this means things like:
- We are building and strengthening our connections and our power - true power - power with, power within.
- We are building, and crossing, bridges to new ways/old ways - good ways all.
- We are treasuring our commonalities and our diversity and finding how we steer and propel together towards our common goals.
- We are remembering, reawakening, regenerating, restoring, renewing.
- Collective Care. Collective Care. Collective Care.
These may seem abstract, but they are the building blocks of everything, of everything that is possible.
Can you feel it too?
For me Holding Visions like this brings the feeling of hope manifesting, and hope already manifested.
(And just to note that I do not use manifesting lightly, as a former manifesting skeptic, and also in rebellion - or perhaps RACOR - Rebellion Against the Conformity of Rebellion???? as per the band formerly of this name - of the latest and greatest trending of manifesting, not being one to follow a trend or any removal of deep and important substance that may be associated with less careful appropriation, and also not being one to throw out the deep and important substance that is there nonetheless. More later on that anyway...)
Because not only is it going to happen, but already, right Here and right Now, it is happening. We are making it happen. We are happening. And that is Manifesting.
We set our intention, we focus our attention, and we apply our will, for the highest and greatest good of all. And this is Magic.
Fear is where we find our Courage, Grief is how we know the immensity of our Love, maybe Together is how we remember our Power. And perhaps Boldness is where we may hold the Truth of our Hope.
Or something. Because the only certainty is change, right..............?!
In any case, here we are.
Here I am. And right Here, right Now, I Choose to Hold the Vision and Dare to Hope, to Boldly Hope, to Actively Hope, and to Do the Work to Heal all that needs healing - within, and also without, and continue to Do the Next Right Thing, one step at a time, with Love, and, always, a little bit of Magic.
To close, a sneak preview of a new Vision Growing...