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Archive for April, 2013

Travel Light

If you only read one thing about the Boston Marathon let it be this:

If you are losing faith in human nature today, watch what happens in the aftermath of an attack on the Boston Marathon. The flood of donations crashed the Red Cross’s Web site. The organization tweeted that its blood supplies are already full. People are lining up outside of Tufts Medical Center to try and help. Runners are already vowing to be at marathons in the coming weeks and months. This won’t be the last time the squeakers run Boston. This won’t be the last time we gather at the finish line to marvel how much more we can take than anyone ever thought possible.

And watch this…

Although it seems unrelated I trust that you will understand how I see this as integral to ending violence…

if we were able to see the beauty in ourselves and each other we would never be able to do anything but love one another…

I sent this video to a group of my friends whose hearts I know will be bruised by all of the grief and the loss that happened yesterday at the Boston Marathon… a group who will seek to choose love over anger and fear.  And it is in these moments that I call out to each of them, to remind myself that I am not alone in braving the world with an open and vulnerable heart, that I am not the only one that believes that kindness and compassion are the only way to peace.

I hope that they are able to  see the beauty of themselves and others.   It takes a tremendous amount of courage and to go against the grain, against all of those who will rail with anger, gnash their teeth and present violence as a justified response to violence.

I choose to fight violence with beauty.

So yesterday and last night I purposefully sought out beauty, to share things that restored my faith in humanity, that remind me that I am surrounded by so many loving, kind, generous, beautiful, caring, committed people.

And I wanted them to know…

And dear reader, this is for you as well…

And when I think of you…

Beauty is one of the first things that comes to mind…

Beauty that shines through each of you, radiant kindness and amazing grace.

So thank you for your beauty, for your kindness and your grace.
Continue to shine like the stars in the midst of the dark night…

The world needs your light.

Two Ways

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I gathered with women and men this morning from across the state of Minnesota to talk about moving a statewide plan to end violence forward.  Why this is necessary, why now… and one only needs turn on the news this afternoon to be reminded why.  In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon Bombs yet again we are forced to choose our response as a nation, as a community, as individuals. 

So again, I make my choice. 

To radiate love. 

To stand in the midst of pain and darkness and declare my trust that love will overcome.  To comfort those who grieve, to hold the light for those who feel lost in this darkness.  

Perhaps this overcoming will not be in the timeline that I choose… I am willing to surrender my idea of a timeline, my attempt at gaining control over something so much bigger than myself.  I acknowledge that fear and anger are so corrosive… and yet… time and time again I have seen love shift hearts, I have seen how true welcome create community, I have borne witness to pain transforming into forgiveness, into healing, into love.  

I believe that the antidote to violence is community, caring for each other and setting compassion as our default emotion rather than fear and anger. 

I believe the antidote is connection- not distance.  

I believe the answer involves more vulnerability- not arming ourselves literally or figuratively. 

The most brave people I have known have slayed their own dragons, have stood strong through storms of doubt, and have continued to seek love even when it was difficult. 

To choose love when fear is the easy option, to keep your heart open when the easy choice would be to shut your heart down, to continue to risk even though there are no guarantees.  That is true bravery. 

 

 

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