With today’s headlines of lone white gunmen on killing sprees, African Americans being beaten and killed by white police during arrests, white police being killed by African Americans, perennial anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim sentiments around the world, and Donald Trump's less than 'peace and love' spirit, it's hard to believe that tolerance and acceptance are two words in our vocabulary.
The world has gone quite mad, yet there is a growing positive, collective, and elevated consciousness that is spreading peace and love. Years ago, while going through a challenging relationship with my ex-boyfriend, my Kundalini yoga teacher, Krishna Kaur, said I was living in duality. I’d call her crying saying, “I love him but don’t believe a word he says. I know he loves me but is lying all the time.” She was right.
And living in duality will make you schizo and crazy. What duality, madness, and unmanageable inner turmoil must those that commit the above actions be living with?
Tolerance and acceptance of others begins from within.
How do we fix a world where so many people are disconnected from knowing or caring the difference between right and wrong or have any interest in or understanding of self-awareness and personal development? Adding fuel to the fire, I believe, is diet and mal-nourishment with much of the population cranked up on sugar, caffeine, and processed food. Aside from Hitler who was apparently later in life became a vegetarian do you think anyone that commits hate crimes is a vegan? This heavy tone is solely intended to set the stage.
For many years, my career has been creating and implementing awareness-building marketing, branding, and communication strategies, campaigns, and events. Today I wondered, what if the Universe came to me as a client (pro bono, of course!) to produce a campaign to raise the level of tolerance and acceptance in the world. What would I do?
Tough question. I remembered Gandhi’s great quote, “Be the change you wish to see in the world,” and Yogi Bhajan, who introduced Kundalini yoga to the West to the powerful technology of Kundalini yoga saying, “Make yourself so happy that by looking at you other people become happy.” There can be no collective change without individual change first. It all starts from within.
So step away from your electronic devices, put down that mocca frocca iced matte latte cup of joe from Starbucks, and take a moment to pause, breath, drink in the love, and find your own inner peace.
I know firsthand that a consistent yoga and meditation practice works. But often I slack, opting for more sleep or, well, just because. Then I use the all-powerful psychological excuse that starting back on a Monday makes more sense!
We are magnificent beings, yet so often forget. For whatever reason, it is easier to believe the negative rather than the positive when it comes to our self. A few simple shifts can help bring us back to our internal home, thereby affecting a positive ripple effect for the greater good.
Speak your truth. Think your truth. Be your truth. The truth will set you free, always. Be fearless, courageous, and warrior-like when it comes to this. There’s a vibratory frequency to everything on this planet, including words. You create your reality simply with your word choice. Many moons ago, I was a frequent liar—not necessarily lying about anything substantial to others, but lots of lies to myself. Ultimately I developed a raging hyperthyroid—throat, 5th chakra, speaking one’s truth. Hmmm…Once I changed my mental playlist, my thyroid balanced out. Hmmm, again.
Yogi Bhajan says your word is your value as a human being, and the best way to improve your communication skills is to talk to a tree. Find a tree and say something to it, then answer from the tree’s point-of-view. He says this will totally change your way of communication. No trees available except those in full public view and you don’t want appear crazy? No problem, talk to a plant or a vase of flowers.
They say the mind is a terrible thing to waste. How true. Most of us are convinced that the mind controls us, that ‘this is who I am, I can’t help it.’ The opposite, however, is true. We control our mind. The mind has three functional aspects—negative, positive, and neutral.
The negative, or protective mind is the survival gauge, protecting us from pain, anything negative, or dangerous. The positive, expansive mind (my personal favorite!) is after pleasure, fulfillment and is constructive, risk- taking, and active.
The neutral mind is where we find balance as it looks at things in relation to your purpose and reality, with no judgment or attachment. The neutral, or meditative mind is the ultimate win-win mentality. In this state, you can see life with compassion. It evaluates the input of the negative/positive minds and provides guidance within seconds. It is intuitive and gives you access to your soul, or higher self. It is from the neutral mind that speaking and living your truth is possible.
Imagine living in a world where everyone was operating from the neutral mind…
When I began practicing Kundalini Yoga fifteen years ago, all the white turbans and chanting convinced me it was a cult (which, of course, I quickly learned it is not). Chanting made me very uncomfortable at first. One day, though, I decided to let go and try it and haven’t looked back since. Everything about chanting is bliss.
Imagine living in a world where everyone chanted daily…
Change takes time and patience. A favorite joke my father used to tell strangely applies here. An old and young bull were chilling on a hilltop. They saw down yonder a field of hot cows. The young bull said, “Let’s run and make love to one of them.” The old bull said, “Let’s walk and make love to them all.”
Step by step, inch-by-inch, if we master ourselves, speak and live our deepest truth, share little yogic tips along the way about diet, learning to breathe properly, simple meditations, etc., I have to believe the world’s positive frequency will be raised and tolerance will be found.