"...but angry people are not always wise..."
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
Lately, I cannot help but notice...the "world situation" is making any number of people angry, and in very personal ways. Because world situations are always very personal - they have to do with human life.
It is indiscriminate, the outrage. If you are angry about something, and the more openly you express that anger, I can just about guarantee there is someone across "the divide" who will match it willingly, or even without thinking.
Sure, I have felt it, I have at times expressed it. Openly. And not so openly. But I'm thankful I have gradually learned throughout my life to find a way to deal with it (even if imperfectly). I'm dealing with it now. Right here. Right now. Because something made me angry earlier today, and I consciously chose a different approach.
I claim no particular expertise, except to know what I have observed: When we are angry, we are generally judging more than we are observing, and we are very rarely breathing, or at least not particularly well.
What if we could do our best to put our anger on a shelf and decide to understand instead?
What if we could actually make an attempt to glimpse the other side?
Wouldn't that be astonishing!?!
(OK, fine, that last remark was just a little bit angry, because you see, I'm just a little bit angry about the anger itself and what it's doing to our lives and to our society. I choose to see mine too, when it arises.)
What if you could try on someone else's shoes by trying on their hearts?
You might begin to hear.
And some of "them" might very well begin to hear you too.
I must include a warning. It takes a lot of courage to "try on" someone's heart, to allow yourself to understand. Because the absolutes begin to fade, and that can feel uncomfortable - if you decide to tell your friends, some of them might choose to judge you, and you need to let that go.
The starkly outlined blacks and whites begin to shift.
Some say they blur to shades of gray. And you may see the gray at first, the mind sees gray, you may only see the gray, the mind sees ambiguity. Keep going through the gray, keep going, keep on going (this is a very important step, it's still in process for me too). Because when you keep on going, when you consciously choose to understand, you begin to see the colors, at first they come in softly.
There is a knowing that is impossible, yet real. It embraces every contradiction of the mind. It is a knowing that can only arise from Love, from heart to heart to heart to heart.
And the anger falls away.
You can look into "their" eyes, completely, without flinching...you can look into their eyes and See.
And the tears begin to flow.
The New Earth doesn't exist on one side of the bridge or on the other. The New Earth is the Bridge.