Doing the Only Thing I Can Do

Hatred will not cease by hatred,
But only by love.
This is an ancient and eternal law.
— The Buddha

I woke up this morning with a burning heart, and sat with grief and fear while trying to write.  “Mocha next to me.  I feel my love for her.  That’s all there is.”  I have tried to make lists of gratitudes.  I think it’s a valuable practice, but although I know I am thankful for things — my dog, my car, a roof over my head — I don’t actually feel grateful.  Which always makes me worry that I’m not really grateful.  So I started to write about all the things I love, and fear are being slowly or quickly destroyed.  Something totally unexpected happened.  My heart opened and I felt a lot of love, for the underdogs, the outcasts, the marginalized and vulnerable.  I realize that my heart opens whenever people are in trouble.  I’m so glad to have this, it’s all I have.  I wrote:

I love the Dakota people and their supporters at Standing Rock

I love the people in the LGBTQ community

I love the rivers that will be poisoned by fracking, and the rivers that are still clean.

I love the trees that clean the air for us, and that are targeted for exploitation.

I love the people of Flint, Michigan, who are still having to drink poisoned water, or pay for clean water.

I love the immigrants, the Muslims, the disabled who have been targeted by our fascist government-elect.

I love the underdogs who are struggling with a burden too great to be borne.  I even love the underdogs who wanted change so badly they voted for Trump, and had no idea what he had planned to do.

I love Mocha, and I love the trees around my house, and I love the birds that I see.

That helps a lot.  It seems that it’s easier for my heart to open for things that are in trouble.  That’s always been true, hasn’t it?

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