Have you ever been prompted to speak up and then when you talk, the words rush out in some kind of jibberish that does not resemble what your mind wanted you to say?
Two days ago I listened to a speaker give a talk that I had trouble with. It wasn’t so much the topic, which was confusing to start with. It was supposed to be a positive talk about how, rather than the doom and gloom predicted for 2012 and the so-called “end times”, he found that more and more Light was evident. Everywhere he could see were happy people participating in the uplifting of the planetary vibe.
I rebelled. My heart rate increased. In the room we were in, which is a small center for inter-faith spiritual celebration, it is indeed a setting where I usually relax and catch my breath. The decor is all gold, yellows, white, with candles, crystals and religious artifacts from various teachings. The people listening to the talk were healers, spiritual seekers, peace workers and walkers of many paths, the majority of them older than me. After his talk, many of them raised their hands to share feedback and what they got out of his talk.
My breathing was short and I felt angry. While I listened to the discussions after his presentation I tried to quietly investigate what was bothering me. To my ears, I was hearing a lot of self-congratulating about how special these people are and how the town is an energy vortex. It is true that the town is special and progressive but the same could be said for several towns nearby that are sprouting healing centers, organic farms, holistic education and getting back to the land type of lifestyles and businesses that support them. In my mind I was thinking that rather than pat our backs, was it not also important to teach others how to create the same great places to live?
I also heard, correctly or not, that the negative events happening in the world are not so bad because they provide the opportunity for us to bless the lessons we will learn. That is not how mainstream people see the world. I felt angry because while people who have reached this level of awareness can and do view events like terrorism, war, white cops killing black men and political turmoil as opportunities to send love and benevolent prayers, the majority of people I know are in the thick of depression, fear and stress, especially young people. The Light, to me, has a long way to go before I would be satisfied that it is seen and felt by the world majority.
Some people mentioned they don’t watch TV or listen to the news because it is negative. Many of the people there don’t participate with Facebook or any Internet activity outside of email. To me, it is easy to say things are going well when you are hiding under a rock. I kept thinking of my conversations on Facebook with young people I know who need help making sense of their world and my 20 years of moderating several global online forums. Communication is the perfect opportunity to teach peaceful, unconditional ways to live together. I was frustrated.
Before the talk, the minister told a story about two nuns who went to a store and debated buying beer. One nun thought it would cause problems, while the other grabbed the beer and proceeded the checkout counter. At the funny look they received, the nun explained they use the beer to wash their hair. After a moment’s hesitation, the clerk reached under the counter and handed them a bag of pretzels to go with the beer, saying “And these are for the curls.” The story was about courage and to me, breaking out of the box and one’s comfort zone.
I raised my hand. I don’t remember what I said. Not a single mumbled thing with the exception that I referred to the courage shown by the nuns. I do remember the response to something I said that caused the room to erupt in an audible disagreement of no. I was trying to express that from my work and exposure to people from around the world, there is a tremendous need for people like those in the room to get out there and be examples of the positive Light visionaries they claimed to be.
I was cut off when I got to the part about teaching compassion. However, the minister turned around to say I brought up a topic that warranted more time and I felt she sensed my despair.
After that, I was an emotional wreck. My daughter was sitting to my left and a new friend, close to my age sitting to my right picked up on my distress and whispered encouragement. She understood what I was trying to say, but funnily enough, I could no longer remember what I said and was beating myself up for raising my hand.
There was a silent meditation next, and tears filled my eyes. I was really hurting. My friend and daughter got me through the rest of the morning until it was time go. Not staying to mingle, I left the building immediately with my daughter, needing to get outside and go home. My wise daughter talked to me and said that she, like my friend, understood my intent and that I said some things that might not be understood unless the life experiences are like mine.
We ended up returning to the building, where my friend embraced me with hugs of comfort. Two people came up to me, saying they thought I did fine but I felt shunned by others who were around, but by then I was hyper-sensitive and unable to judge anything from a place of balance.
Two days later and I still think about what led up to me raising my hand. I’m not afraid to speak up, grab a microphone, talk in front of a crowd or any type of public speaking. When I speak up, it is because it feels as if something or someone is pushing me – hard! That is what this felt like. However, the words came crashing out in unorganized thought patterns where I didn’t feel as though my point was made and instead I felt misunderstood.
Has this ever happened to you?