A new territory
There are a handful of writers that I tend to go on and on about. One of them is Charles Eisenstein. I’ve read most of his books, and the ideas he brings forward resonate with me deeply. I’d summarize the core of his teachings as: if we can recognize that we are not separate (from one another, and from the world at large), we will make the changes we know we need, the ones our hearts long for. Something like that.
Today, he sent out a video that Sustainable Human (Chris Agnos) put together, with a voice over by Eisenstien. It’s called The Need To Be Right, and it highlights core wounds shared by those of us in our “modern” culture. It’s a beautiful way of shining a light on something that feels so obvious, yet somehow invisible: we are all wounded by the culture we are living in. This culture that pushes us apart from each other, that makes us feel that nature is “out there,” that there are others to hate. Eisenstein’s articulation of the way that this separation gives us a moments reprieve, and helps us feel, even fleetingly, as if we belong. To something at least, feels revolutionary.
The heart of change, he argues is in moving into the territory beyond shame, beyond self rejection, rejection of other, beyond conditional approval, conditional reward. Beyond punishment. On one hand it feels impossible. It feels like there is nothing else beyond what we have, where we are. But that’s what makes this territory so new. We don’t really know what lies out there. We need to get brave enough to find out.
As my good friend Shannon might say, perhaps we can be braver together.