As we begin a new year, and I launch my new site, I offer this prayer for our community, country, and world as we turn another page and begin the next chapter.
We live in a magnificent world.
It’s easy to forget, but above all else, we live in someplace made of magic.
A transcendent Universe, with beautiful, inherent laws woven into its every molecule. Just beyond the reach of our conscious perception, but understood eternally by our souls. If we are quiet enough– if we silence our thoughts and let go of our emotions– we can at times experience a brief knowing of this divine truth.
It is never a conscious knowing. It can’t be thought or seen or heard or smelled. It might not even be a feeling. It’s just a knowing, the same as knowing what’s right around a familiar corner, just beyond our view.
It is a deep blue oasis in a bone-dry desert.
But we are the water. And we are the desert.
In this New Year, let us live in wonder at the incredible natural world around us and within us, be humbled by it, and quiet our minds often in order to take it in completely unfiltered.
When we reorient ourselves to this great Truth, our human struggles become reduced in scope and monstrosity. We can approach them with a healthy detachment. We remember that we are players on a grand stage, acting out the greatest performance ever conceived.
But every actor must understand his role. The more we learn about our own nature– as individuals, as members of a certain sex, as human beings in a complex biological web– the more peace we will find.
So much of life’s pain is caused by fighting or misunderstanding our own nature. True compassion is born from acceptance of what is, and true progress can only follow from that point of origin.
In this New Year, let us pursue honest self-knowledge relentlessly, and fearlessly. Let us expose all the truths of the human condition, to speak what most cannot or would rather not, to probe the depths that remain the true last frontier of man.
None of us are on this journey alone. We are all companions as we soar through outer space on this ship called Earth.
Learning from each other, sharing with each other, and being open to hearing others will help propel us to more compassionate and happy ways of being. We will look not just to each other, but to the great thinkers of the past as well.
At the same time, we must know our values and be willing to fight for them. We cannot succumb to the intellectual laziness of modernity, which breeds doublethink in pursuing its false idols of “equality,” “tolerance,” or “inclusion.” They are wolves in sheep’s clothing.
War is not peace. Freedom is not slavery. Ignorance is not strength.
In this New Year, let us learn from the progress of great men and civilizations past, so that we can build our own legacy of progress in this great lineage of Truth. Let us carry the mantle of humanism, those who wish to truly know and love human beings for what they are, and not what we conveniently wish them to be for economic or political agendas.
Our lives take place in the space immediately around us. The internet, or a smart phone, is not our reality. We have powerful tools at our fingertips today, but they also have the power to consume our consciousness.
We can all spout beautiful words on the internet, agree about the way things should be, and devise great schemas for the utopian future. But none of it matters if we do not live in the present moment of the physical world around us. Never confuse the hyper-reality of the internet with the beautiful, divine reality of even the most basic moment of the true world around you. Looking outside at a tree can make you feel more alive than hours spent online, no matter how many “likes” or re-tweets you get.
Nurture the community around you. Live in a place where you can feel the shared pulse of others. Some sense of a tribe, fundamentally like-minded people working toward the same shared purpose for a specific place. A place where everyone is safe to live, laugh, work hard, love and experiment, without fear. Knowing that others will support you and wish for your success in all human endeavors.
If you need to find it on the internet, that’s certainly a start. I have been inspired and found great love and joy through the online community. But our lives will never be complete until our external communities can match or exceed this.
You might be tempted to say, nobody else gives a shit about me. Why should I hope for some idealistic community where everybody loves each other? That’s not reality.
When there is so much pain, negativity, and despair all around us, it’s easy to give up. It is so tempting to buy into the hopelessness, and just check out. In fact, it might even be the rational thing to do.
It’s not my problem. Let somebody who gives a shit try to figure it out.
But every one of us can find that community if we open ourselves to it. It is a choice every single one of us can make. It is a shift you must make in your mindset– to have that sense of openness, vulnerability, and abundance. You have love to share and connections to forge with others. A mutual understanding to foster, and experiences to teach and learn from.
Every individual can be a spark that ignites the fire of a community. By focusing and being open to it, we will manifest this community by awakening the goodness of those around us.
In this New Year, let us shine a light. We will shine it together, a blinding bright.
And each of us will shine within.