How to sit in the unknown and face all the sh*t in the world.

Here at the house, we used to rotate between potlucks, meditation, workshops, discussion - something different every week.

But, something's shifted. A deeper call has emerged. And, for the past month, we’ve really been committing to contemplative practice every Sunday night after a shared meal.  

There are many reasons to practice: to recenter ourselves individually and as a group, to clear our minds, to nourish ourselves as we continue our work in the world. 

But last Sunday, I was reminded of contemplation as a way to practice sitting in the unknown. I was reminded of why that’s so. freaking. important. on the path of sacred activism.

See, as we had finished eating, before sitting down in the candlelit temple room to sing and share silence, we were talking about what’s going on in the world right now. Our teachers like Joanna Macy, Margaret Wheatley, and Andrew Harvey urge people to get reeeallllyy present with the gravity of the situation humanity is in. Like, really, deeply, terrifyingly present. Like, knowing that our world is shifting dramatically and pretty much none of us is prepared for the devastation that we face. Around the table, we debated whether or not that was actually true. 

Don’t people (we) need hope?

How can we invite others to movements when all seems lost?

Or is it a given that once we “get present,” we’ll experience a deeper hope that will sustain our activism

I don’t really know the answers. None of us do. 

But I’ll tell you something. Sitting in silence in that meditation room tonight, having just sung together and read a passage from Octavia Butler, I was filled with a totally illogical sense of hope. It wasn’t a thought of “one day, if I just believe, we’ll see the future we’re striving for.” This hope felt more like an impulse. I sensed (as I often do) something pushing me, surging through me, and I felt the same in these hearts around me, toward something, into a future that none of us know. 

Beyond all reason, I can’t help but have hope.

Because we're willing. We're willing to be in that unknown. 

But, we have to practice it.

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Hope to see you soon.