There is no darkness which is not my own.
What I mean to say is that to distinguish between "my darkness" and "your darkness" is truthfully no longer possible for me. I must claim it ALL as my own. And WOW....is there ever a lot of it.
I don't want to claim it, of course, because I am afraid to. I try and determine what is and isn't mine all of the time. If something awful happens to someone I ask, "What did they do and how can I avoid their fate?" I put on my detective hat and I try and make sense of it all.
"She was abused as a child"......"He was a smoker"......"He grew up in a bad part of town"......."It ran in her family"......"They were at war".
"Phew! Thankfully not me!"
I desperately try and get above it because when I can place the blame on something or someone in particular, it makes me feel safe for a short while. But when I dig a little deeper, and if I can be a little more honest with myself, I find that the fear doesn't end there. No. There is a lot more where that came from. And this idea of "blame" just doesn't stand up anymore.
Everybody is guilty but no one is to blame.
Sometimes people come along and truly stump me. Those people that seem so solid and sane who I have witnessed crumble to pieces, or those that I have read about on the news that have committed unspeakable crimes. And these stories are my worst nightmares come true because I just can't make sense of situations like those.
And God forbid something doesn't make sense to me.
And I have to ask: "Could it have been me?"
I so badly want to be immune. Sometimes I try and make changes that I think will keep me more "safe". I also try and rationalize and justify and judge the degree of my '"sins" against those of others.....like I have some way of knowing the effect of my actions on those around me.
I really don't.
Those words I uttered back in grade 7 to the unpopular kid on the bus: "Fat Cow" could have wounded her more than a bullet to the chest for all I know.
The truth is that I am not immune and I may never be. And certainly not so long as I am trying to be. Not so long as I won't come down To Earth and take an honest look at what is really going on.
When I try and separate myself from the darkness of others I perpetuate a powerful illusion...and it is this illusion that has kept me enslaved in my fear. It is with this illusion that I have created something to fear in the first place. Until I recognize and take full responsibility for our collective darkness I will continue to separate, alienate and deny those individuals who carry the heaviest burdens of us all. And yes, I will continue to separate myself from others as well. We think we get to pick and choose who we get to share our humanity with, but in my experience, if I want to be truly intimate with people in my life I must be open to all.
Until I can fully change my perspective and see that I am not detached from, above, or any better than my brothers and sisters who are also stumbling in the dark, I can only contribute to the evils of this world.
Also, and this is really important: If I separate myself from the darkness of others I must also separate myself from their light.
Why would I want to do that? We need all of the light we can get......it is what we most need to recognize and hold in our intentions for the sake of our planet's future.
I will continue to develop my night vision. My inner worlds are like caves, vast and deep and often very dark. I want to explore deeper and join other spelunkers on this adventure. For I believe that it is not until we are willing and courageous enough to face and reconcile our own darkness and forgive those deepest and most shameful parts of ourselves, that we can be truly compassionate with others. Until that time we will only serve to keep the illusion of separation in place.
When we can love ourselves deeply, and forgive ourselves entirely, we will at last be capable of offering that same grace to others. We will finally come together.
And that is how we will heal this planet.