I interrupt my series on the yamas to shed some light on life as it unfolds.
Last week the terrorist group ISIS devastated the community in Paris, an attack leaving over 100 dead. The world’s heart broke as we watched footage from the ground, heard stories of survivors and remembered those who lost their life.
It was pure shock,
which quickly escalated into revenge
into US versus THEM.
And now there are two wars taking place. The world against ISIS and love against hate. But it’s not really hate. It’s just fear disguised as hate. For most of our evolution, fear served us in the realm of survival. It quickly detected “others” and alerted us that our very being was being threatened .. someone is trying to take our land, someone is trying to take our livestock. Fear had it’s place in our evolutionary timeline. The problem is when the lines get blurred between actual and perceived threats.
For many, the easiest and most available response to fear and disempowerment is violence. The problem with violence is that only begets more violence. It is never the answer and always the problem.
Since the attacks happened I can almost see it in the air, smell it in the room. People are on the edge of their seats, waiting for an opportunity to prove themselves, to defend that which they perceived to be theirs, and to do it with an immeasurable force of violence.
Last night we watched Kyle’s favorite band play in the city. They are a low-key, sad-song, old-soul rock and roll assembly of men in their late 40’s. Their music is amazingly honest and raw.
During the duration of the night, a fight erupted in front of us (participants included a group of military guys itching to showcase their might), then a domestic dispute splashed us from behind – like waves violently throwing themselves against the rocky shore, then more male testosterone parading around like noise patrol through the crowded bar. It was truly amazing how much violent energy filled such a beautiful place.
And there, in the middle of it all,
we find ourselves.
And there, in the middle of the domestic dispute I saw a glimpse of the divine. The dispute was awkwardly between Kyle’s employee and his wife ( who was inconsolable) and it took place directly behind us. Every part of me wanted to turn and stare and get involved and help this woman step down off the cliff O’Crazy she was climbing. And while the noise of her screams were being drowned out by the buzz of the live music, I see Kyle, my beautiful partner, ignoring the itch to watch the shit show and just talking, laughing, engaging the rest of us- almost to distract us from the drama behind. And as I stood there, absorbing it all but truly listening to nothing, my eyes fixed on Kyle and his unfailing humility. His compassion and love for other people is unparalleled. He has this incredible ability to downplay every situation, make every uncomfortable person feel comfortable in his presence, like it’s okay, it’s no big deal, you’re cool with me.
And that is one of the traits I love and appreciate most about him. The calm amidst the storm. The friendly face in sea of assholes. And that, is proudly and dearly, my best friend and partner.
So in the midst of the terror, fear, confusion and chaos. I take solace, wrapped in the arms of my love, knowing that goodness and mercy still flourish in the face of violence.