My brain has at times been quite exhausted by pain and suffering in the world. I have, for years, tried to understand many things that don’t make sense to my heart. And the things that I feel most prominently in my heart are the big systemic issues that make very slow progress and sometimes seem like the balance of power is entirely off track.
Addressing systemic issues like sexism, classism, racism, capitalism, patriarchy and colonialism, greed and their impacts — like sexual harassment and assault, poverty, tax loopholes and wealth inequality, depression and mental illness, eating disorders and learning disorders, auto immune diseases, exploitation of marine life, plant life, climate chaos and the threat of extinction — requires the capacity to hold a multitude of realities in one’s body-mind, and to appreciate the paradoxical complexities that humans bring to and onto the world.
One of the most basic paradoxes is that good people do bad things. We can believe that all people are inherently good and that their body-mind is unable to regulate their actions and choices, which leads to unforeseen consequences. These repeated cycles then requires the brain to become maladaptive and increasingly less capable of regulating behaviors that would be in harmony with one’s inherent goodness.
Or we can believe that there are inherently bad people procreating and making more bad people which leads to the perpetuation of systemic oppression due to biases, judgments, assumptions, attitudes and behaviors, notions and theories, classifications, regulations, policies and enforcements that will overstimulate and overload the human body-mind on the receiving end of these judgments, notions and policies.
I believe we have lost the sense of being seen and nurtured by community, the way Native Americans raise their children.
I believe we all have the same basic problem of misunderstandings — communication patterns that are unique and require the brain to adapt in order to receive messages expressed in new patterns unlike our own myelinated pathways.
So when a brain is overstimulated and overloaded with unprocessed material built up over a day, a week, a lifetimes, it becomes compromised or impaired.
If, instead of first defining right or wrong, we first attend to the wellness of our own body-mind, our capacity to see goodness in everyone is strengthened and grows. As this happens, the forces of systemic injustice weaken.
Let us all attend to our body-mind wellness. Let us all find Inner Fortune — together.