Heart Light

“If the light is in your heart, you will find your way home.” Rumi

It’s an ordinary morning.

My husband and son putter around getting ready for work.

In Mariupol, bombs drop on a theatre where hundreds of people have sheltered from the violence of war. Civilian casualties mount as a war of attrition begins.

The dog, his eager tail wagging, asks to be let out.

A new Omicron variant has appeared in Europe. An estimated 60% of new cases in New York City contain the new variant.

I put on the kettle for my morning coffee and get out the organic coconut milk.

The possibility of nuclear war bobs up, then down again.

As my coffee brews, I look out the kitchen door and contemplate the yard clean up that needs to be done.

Inflation is soaring. Recession or depression – economists can’t decide.

Bright breasted robins are at the bird feeder. Blooms are appearing on the lilac. Spring is finally coming.

Climate change. Economic indicators. Bigotry and hatred in a multitude of forms. Tone deaf political bickering. Families and communities ripping themselves apart. The specter of another endless war.

The turmoil of the world swoops closer, beginning to envelope me. Tears begin to run quietly down my face. I consider the juxtaposition between my quiet, peaceful home and ordinary concerns, when measured against the deepening human misery that surrounds us and I cannot, with good conscience, find a way to reconcile them.

I head for the guest room where my meditation space is, carrying with me the chaos of the world and my coffee, in a glazed purple mug. Warm lemon water isn’t cutting it this morning. I light my candle and do some light yoga stretches. I drop onto my cushion and set the timer.

A tornado of thoughts swirls around me, filled with bright rainbow winds and ominous dark pockets that threaten at any moment to envelope my soul. Breathing gently, rhythmically, I allow the cone of the tornado to drop through my belly, the base of my spine, down through the floor and into the deep richness of Mother Earth. With her abundant generosity and limitless grace, she accepts the storm within me, easing for a time the tight grip the concerns of the world have on me. Allowing me to more clearly ask the universe the questions that haunt me.

What’s being asked of me, in this time that seems to know little of peace, love, acceptance and understanding? What’s mine to learn, to give, to receive, to let go of?

As a physical being, what's in my power to do seems small and inconsequential. No amount of time or money I can give will bring world peace. My spiritual being doesn't have the limitations of the physical world, nor does it have arms and legs, except those I give it.
And perhaps that’s the re-discovered lesson.

Spiritual traditions teach that the pure light in our hearts will give us our truest answers and be our best guides. Our heart-lights are individual and unique yet the Source of our light, no matter what you choose to call it, is the same. When we cultivate our own light with love, compassion and understanding, peace is possible within ourselves and, with grace, in the world.

That is what I have to give. What, I think, we all have to give, and to and receive from each other. The light of love and understanding, the richness of our differences, an abiding desire for peace.

The problems of the world are not in my power to solve, nor was it ever meant to be that way. When I attempt in a misguided way to shoulder that which I cannot possibly change, I blind myself to my true responsibility to be a loving, generous human being, following my light to bring peace to my corner of the world.

Photo by Tetiana SHYSHKINA on Unsplash