Lets Get Free!
In a victimized society we are all in need of a safe space; “a place or environment in which a person or category of people can feel confident that they will not be exposed to discrimination, criticism, harassment, or any other emotional or physical harm.” Right now it’s hard to feel safe anywhere. Our public discourse reinforces fear and the lesser parts of ourselves. While it might be serving our economy, it is not serving us. We need to start thinking about how we can become free regardless of the world around us.
Marketing and politics make money on ensuring we take action to buy a product or politician/party. If making or raising money is the goal, there is no incentive to care why we act. If we act out of fear because we don’t want to be fat or have Mexicans take our jobs we are reinforcing elements of our humanity we should be evolving through. Fear permeates our culture and Americans are willing to kill one another to feel safe.
As a country, the election of Trump is a defining moment in America on whether we will lose our democracy to fear. Can we feel safe when so much of our culture makes us feel inadequate, shame and victimized? How do we reject the notion of scarcity and build an abundance culture that believe its best when people take inspired action to love themselves, rather than impulse actions to fix problems.
We need to create a spaces where we feel safe, and we can create them regardless of the unsafe world around us. Start with you, how often do you agree with the ad’s. How often do you forget this country and its society is a shared illusion, not a set reality and therefore you don’t need to be rich, drive the right car to be happy, safe and enjoy life? Are there times when you should have compassion for yourself and you don’t?
Observe your actions. How often do you do things that bring you pleasure or joy? Are there aspects of your life you would change if you were not scared of the ramifications? As you observe your choices see how much you love yourself through those choices, don’t just look for what you need to do better. The more you love yourself the better the world will be. Individuals make society, so your happiness matters.
Creating ritual with friends is another way to reinforce safe space in your life. Make it a point to create pleasurable rituals with people who also want to feel good and stop living their life from a place of fear. Ritual is not just a religious prescribed action, but really is about a shared intention with friends to share an experience. Sitting in a park sharing dreams and poetry is a wonderful and cheap way to create safe space. Whatever you do choose to do it regularly and always make sure it feels good. The world will make us feel bad, to make up for it give yourself time to let go of it.
These small steps will change the world because having an intimate intentional safe space will develop other ways of being. A new perception and internal safety leads to a feeling of freedom found in the hearts of courageous people. We need a sub culture of courageous people to reject a culture of fear and create models to question this reality and envision a new one. I am not sure we can come up with the solution from our current place of fear.
I often think of the spirit of Frederick Douglass who realized he was free and could act that way while being beaten by a slave breaker. As Frederick beat the slave breaker he became free of the fear of the illusion of slavery. I think of the spirit of Harriet Tubman who said “She freed 1000 slaves and could have freed 1000 more if they only knew they were slaves” Imagine that, not every slave wanted to go with Harriett? Fear is an important human emotion but it is not an emotion we want to guide us. We want love to guide us, when an actual woolly mammoth comes to attack us we can let our reptilian brain take over.
Start today, do something pleasurable just for you. Take time to write your dreams, love friends or take a longer walk with your dog. If you’re waiting for a bus, use it as a time to reaffirm how beautiful your life is and how every moment is a moment to live the life you want to live. Your probably never going to become a Kardashian, and that’s ok, we can all still do perfect selfies and walk our own red carpets and at the end of the day we all hope to die the same way, with people who love us and memories of a life well lived.
Let’s not let the goals of marketing and politics to become our goals, let’s let them serve us to live our best lives. Once we are free, just like Harriet and Frederick, we will figure out the next step.