“I get it”, she said. “I get it that you care so much about others that you want to give it to them…, and what if you let your hands come towards yourself for a moment?”
Instead of motioning with both my hands from my heart away from me, I let my hands move towards my heart, and here it was. I could feel myself. Me heart, my sadness, my Being. It lasted for a few moments until my head quietened it down again. Like a cold steel hand reaching up through my spine into my skull and squeezing my head together, holding my thoughts in place, returning to the safe place of numbness and reason.
Why do I do that?
It may seem complicated at first, and yet it is really simple: Because that’s what I learned for my whole life. Not just me. You too. Everybody.
For thousands and thousands of years, our species learned to perfect rational thinking and slowly erode the connection to feelings. Being logical, finding reasons, knowing how it goes, making sense: These are highly regarded in standard societies. Schools are designed to train the mind, throwing in a little physical exercise. Where do humans learn to consciously feel and use their energetic capacities? Not in schools.
It seems so obvious that that’s what we need as a species and as individuals on this planet: To feel — ourselves, each other, other living Beings. Yet thousands of years of suppressed emotions and feelings, conditioned behaviour patterns of staying numb, concepts of how to be a “good” and acceptable man or woman, boy or girl, mother or father, son or daughter, stand in the way of such a “simple” thing as feeling.
And this is only the tip of the iceberg. Below and beyond is a whole field of creative problems just wanting for the authentic meeting of humans, the solving of which will send the current narratives of our spinning in a whole new direction.
Just the other day I read about the New Zealand Government’s “Well-Being Budget”. It lists 10 items that need immediate addressing, items such as: more trees, more community voices, less CO2 use, less plastic etc., etc., you know the stats.
The real problem is not the over-use of resources nor the warming of the planet. The real crisis is the numbness of humans walking, sleeping (or not), breathing, just barely living and unable to feel. How on earth can they (we) authentically create new results?
The way to melt the freeze of numbness which shows up as widespread apathy towards the current state of the Earth is to learn, one person at a time, how to feel. Really feel. Everything. The backlog, the unprocessed, the wounds, the everything. And what is needed for this to happen are spaces that give people the immediate experience of feeling.
This is not work that is done alone, it requires a team, a community. Something magic happens when one’s true felt experience is witnessed and integrated: community is created, internal space is freed up inside, and inner resources are found — essential resources necessary to re-create how life happens on Earth today and in the future.
Written with a little help from my friend, wordsmith Millicent Haughey.