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The news is horrible. The news is always pretty bad but right now it is exceptionally horrible. As riveting as political shenanigans can be, I only pretend to care about one politician more or less than another as is required in polite company.

And trying to make sense of what’s going on by listening to individual opinions lobbed on social media pages is an exercise in futility; everyone beats their drum to be the loudest to try to get our attention or behave like depraved idiots to make us believe they are – well – depraved idiots.

It seems to me that to experience reality we need to go beyond our neither/nor thinking.

Nothing in our natural world expresses the idea of ‘either/or, nature demonstrates the principle of balance. Meditation shows us that what we focus our attention on becomes the reality of how we see the world. Breathing in requires breathing out. Survival depends on give and take.

It seems to me if we’re going to survive this current trend to pit one group against another, we’re going to have to rise above it and realize that we are, as a matter of fact, all in the same soup.

Yes, we can stand in the middle of our skin and choose to hate and hurt and despise and fear everyone around us. We each have the choice to be aggressive and angry.  

But equally, we also have the choice to stand in the middle of our own life in this moment, and breathe together, breathe deeply together, connect with one another, and choose love — and preferably all of the above at once more of the time.

Everything we think, do, even feel, is our choice.

What do you choose?

I choose to not think of myself as a victim, despite all the reasons I’m told I can make that claim – the prejudice I experienced because of my heritage, the limited opportunities and increased stress because my parents were poor, being silenced by male fathers and partners, being demeaned by younger male bosses, getting paid less than my male counterparts, being sexually assaulted — among others.

These are negative experiences, circumstances, in the whole tapestry of my life, but they don’t make me a victim.

I choose to not be a victim of any circumstance in which I find myself. Instead I choose to think of my life as a spark of light of infinite divine creative source of love and joy. And as an infinite divine creative source of love and joy I won’t give my energy to the concept of being a victim.

I won’t be a victim because that means I have to blame others for the choices that I make in my life, and I don’t believe the challenges I face will be solved by blaming other people. Equally I don’t believe our problems as a human species will be solved by blaming others, even if they are responsible for the ‘shitey-shite’ we find ourselves in.

Instead, I’m going to listen and observe the actions of others, ignore their words and watch what it is they actually do. And while I observe, I’ll consider my best and most loving response to what it is they do, for example, find a way to communicate with intelligence and honesty – based on one of my aspirations to have conversations with others that inspire deep understanding and wisdom.

The media pumps out anger and intolerance, politicians pump out fear to control us, I’m going to pump out love.

I choose love.

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