I turned 58 years old November 3, 2016 just on the cusp of the mind-boggling travesty that was the Nov 8 election.
As things turned out, I was glad I got to have my birthday before Election Day. My husband and I were actually celebrating both my birthday and the anticipated electoral results at the same hotel where on one of our first dates eight years prior, just after my 50th birthday, we watched the 2008 election results together with considerable glee and tearful hope for a promising future.
We turned the tv off long before the final results came in. It was too hard on our hearts and a detractor from any attempt at celebration. Instead, we milked just one last drop of birthday celebration, before Donald and his “anti anything and everything that is good for people and the planet” picks for running our country descended into our reality and onto the world’s shaky stage
It wasn’t exactly a “milestone” birthday but it was close enough, and suddenly much too close for comfort. Sixty. I could see it looming, staring me in the face where before it was just sitting silently in a shadow, waiting patiently for its opportunity to pounce.
Something shifted inside of me at the junction of these two intersecting events –Turning uh (gulp) sixty on the horizon and the hard to swallow realization of a (gulp) Trump presidency.
You could call it a “turning point.”
Being almost sixty, I have had many turning points in my life of course. Some were rites of passage like graduations, marriage,, motherhood, divorce, remarriage, early retirement. The usual suspects.
But others were more of a soul progression. Moments when clouds part and clarity is revealed. Moments that change you and your perception in a profound way so that you are a slightly different person than you were just a moment before. You say “aha”, or “I never though of it that way.” You are grateful where before you were steeped in bitterness. You forgive where before you sowed anger.
I have been on what some would call a spiritual path for some years now. I have read thousands of books, gone to workshops, study groups, engaged in energy and natural healing for chronic health issues, taken up yoga, eat mostly plants, learned to meditate and to BREATHE.
I watch Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday and You tube videos about spiritual growth, LOVING YOURSELF and HEALING THE INNER CHILD.
I go to “church” even though I’m Jewish. I study the Bible and I talk to God. I even pray although I am not sure I am doing it right.
But what I realized post election is that everything I have been doing these last few years has been very focused on me. Spiritual seeking has become somewhat of a trend, and one that can easily turn into self-preoccupation.
It hit me that in my quest to become “un” self-absorbed I may have just become more so.
In the spiritual growth movement, there is so much emphasis on “being who YOU are” and manifesting what YOU want in YOUR life, focus on SELF care, SELF love etc that I believe it has fostered a culture of a kind of “spiritual narcissism.
The consciousness movement taught me that we are all just “vessels” here to be “used.” Yet, it dawned on me that I have been spending a disproportionate of amount of my time on perfecting the vessel, on what I wanted for MY life, rather than on how I can be an instrument for God’s love for LIFE itself.
I still plan to get this “vessel” in shape. Lifestyle choices such as doing yoga, eating vegan (even though I don’t’/can’t), meditating are essential to connect to that higher dimension so it can guide us. But as we enter a New Year and uncertain times, this self-proclaimed spiritual seeker/addict/ponderer and Boomer Resisting Tyranny is resolving to do more and be more than I have in the past when it comes to my social and political responsibilities.
The time has finally come. We no longer have a choice.
In my humble opinion…