We must learn to be in the world. Not of the world. Buddha said this. Earlier this morning, I posted two things on my social media regarding the tragic and unjust murder of the young black jogger killed in Georgia by what I see otherwise as three white men acting as modern day slave patrols. However, after having a discussion with a young Black man, I come back to what I understand to be right and exact and the only generative way to approach something so disturbing.
All external chaos and war is a result of the internal chaos/war in the heart of wo/man. We say we want peace yet we contribute to causing confusion. Peace is the absence of confusion. We cannot and should not exhaust our energies on singularly pointing out the wrong doings of the external world until we have addressed the unrest in our own hearts and minds. You cannot change the world until you have changed yourself. You cannot make waves until your own waters are sound and powerful.
When you focus all your energies outwards, you do two things—1) Give away your power to the very party/situation you take issue with, and 2) You are unconsciously distracted from channeling that energy upwards in your own being to actualize your own powerful potential. We could be instead asking ourselves: What are you doing for another? Are you seeking to elevate your community? What could you be doing to build a unified force in your communities to prepare the army for the larger war at hand, rather than focusing on a single battle? How do you situate yourself in the narrative to be able to effect actual change?
I am deeply saddened at the current and ongoing state of affairs around racially motivated hate crimes/murders, enacted and supported by the carceral state and its representatives. I gave 8 years of my life to academic research around the injustices of the system/state to the point of exhaustion. I have a lifetime of scars left by the failures of community and state, as do so many people in this country. I cannot separate the way I feel certain events in my physical and emotional body, nor take away the pain inflicted on the actual bodies of those who continue to lose their lives simply for being born into Black/brown bodies. I know these events well and the memories are deeply etched into the cells of my being.
But we must continue the resistance in a focused and calculated way. We must find ways to heal/elevate at the individual level so we can unite as one powerful body. We cannot fixate on one incident or winning one battle here and there. It won’t win the war. And make no mistake—we are still living and witnessing a war on people—Black and brown people. Women. Gay people. “Different” people. Poor people.
Since the beginning of time there have been opposing forces. This will always be. How we choose to respond to and navigate those energies is on us. The flap of a butterfly’s wings can be felt across the world. Stay conscious of your own frequency. It is easy to feel enraged, distraught, saddened, confused and downright wrathful. But we must not forget the law of reciprocity—that whatever we generate and emit, will always find its way back to us. We are one body in the matrix and nothing goes unanswered for. It is not up to us, and it is.
In honor of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed black jogger killed by three white supremacists in Georgia on February 23, 2020. Rest in power young king.