I believe that the universe is friendly. And I believed that alone made Trump’s victory impossible. Trump’s election caused me to stay awake at night not out of fear (although it was there) but because it made me question whether I believe the universe, or this nation, is friendly. It caused me to question my faith that everything will turn out for our highest and best in “the end” (whenever that is). It caused me to question whether sharing yoga and trying to elevate consciousness through spiritual practices and supporting organizations that raise consciousness was a futile and frivolous goal. Because, as Einstein stated, “[I]f we decide that the universe is an unfriendly place, then we will use our technology, our scientific discoveries and our natural resources to achieve safety and power by creating bigger walls to keep out the unfriendliness and bigger weapons to destroy all that which is unfriendly.” If the world is an unfriendly place, why have children? Why do art?
As the days went on, I moved on from questioning whether the universe (and this country) is a friendly place and started asking: What is the best for our nation? How can I be of service? How can I be a conduit of God’s love in this current political situation? How can I stay consciously engaged rather than withdrawing to avoid discomfort? How can I use my education to make this world a better place?
I came to the conclusion that the election was not “the end.” Instead, this election was my catalyst for spiritual, conscious, and optimistic social action. As our100.org stated, “Our work did not start, and has not ended, with this election.” I realized I need to stop looking to politicians to make our world better because we all have the power to create change. The only limitations are what we believe we can do and what we are willing to do. It was silly of me to think that Trump’s victory has anything to do with whether we live in a friendly Universe because as Edmund Burke stated, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good [women and] men to do nothing.”
Trump’s election made me realize that being a good mom is not just about raising good children. It’s also about making the world a better place. There are many out there who are quietly working to evolve the consciousness of themselves and others. But, there are few who are spiritually grounded and take action to effect change in the physical world. Prior to this election, I believed that prayer, meditation, and holding the vision of peace is the good work that must be done to change this world. I interpreted Gandhi’s message to “be the change you want to see in the world” to mean that I must be loving to make the world a better place. While that is true, I must also take action, as he did. Simply praying and meditating on election day does not help unregistered voters vote. It does not help change the hearts and minds of those that choose not to vote because they think it doesn’t matter or things will never change for them. As the Dalai Lama stated after the attacks on Paris, “We cannot solve this problem only through prayers.” I must take action in the world.
As parents, we understand how to love our children yet correct and direct their behavior. When our child acts out, we discuss the underlying issues and give them appropriate guidance to help them do better. Maybe if I can respond to those on the other side of political issues with the same loving guidance, candid discussions and conscious action, I can be the change I wish to see in the world. Just as it is my duty to tell my son, “No, you cannot run through the mall wielding a ninja sword.” I have a duty to tell Trump or anyone who doesn’t already know, “No, you cannot take away women’s autonomy over their bodies because women are powerful bearers of life and only we can decide whether we choose to bear the burden of motherhood.”
The list of unacceptable actions is too long. But, to me, it’s also irrelevant because my focus is not on the other side. My focus remains on the light . I choose love, not fear, as my motivation. My love is not passive. I will fight for love. I will stand for peace. I will be an optimistic activist. I see a world that works for everyone and with that vision I act in this world to make this spiritual truth not just present in my consciousness but manifest in this world. Trump’s election has caused the Centers for Spiritual Living’s Global Vision to resonate with me even more, especially these lines:
“We envision a world where personal responsibility joins with social conscience in every area of the political, corporate, academic, and social sectors, providing sustainable structures to further the emerging global consciousness.”
I have spent a good amount of the last few years sharpening my spiritual tools and now is the time to use them for conscious social action. Just as being a mother changed my spiritual practice and made me evolve through action, this election has caused me to want to take actions to make the spiritual truth of oneness and peace manifest in this world. Trump’s election was a call for me to reach higher, dream bigger and step into leadership. I felt completely ill-equipped to do anything that would make a difference beyond protesting on Facebook, signing online petitions and making contributions to organizations. The revolution requires getting up and showing up in a way that is foreign to me. It requires becoming active in politics and non-profits, protesting and contacting politicians to express my opinions. And, it requires me taking steps in the right direction, even if I need to stop and ask for directions along the way.