How do we do this? How do we love all the things?
What do you love or are learning to love? Write about that. Notice that.
There is so much we must abandon, release and even refuse if we are to learn to love and revision our world.
What needs to be abandoned so that you can learn to love what you love? Explore that. Write about that.
May I (may you) be that person that follows what we love, lives a principled, misfit of a life. (As best we can.) With just one person acting from love, everyone around benefits.
Because it can be a challenge to love or be grateful in the face of a rude neighbor, or global suffering, or a friend who disappoints; start with appreciation. Find something, anything, that you appreciate about the other, the moment or the situation. Then you may find yourself moving toward love. From there, gratitude emerges. And acts of kindness become easier, natural.
With a difficulty you face, what is there to appreciate? Explore that, write about that.
What act of kindness can come from this appreciation?
One expression of love in this challenging world is to be a misfit. Krishnamurti reminds us that, "It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society." To look the other way, to not speak up, to leave out the hard truth in your written word, to hold yourself back, to focus on comfort rather than meaning, is to live in a false world. To work at being accomplished and successful rather than connected. We miss out on the painful beauty and accompanying joy of an authentic life. A life shared by other misfits.
Be a misfit in this crazy, dogmatic, rule driven world. Walk through the day in your own way, speak up, listen to the sounds of the world. Act on what you hear. The only true way to make sense of the world is through countercultural practices. (Have you noticed how often being kind, expressing love can be counterculture?) Love and kindness, or speaking up are counterculture because the culture as a whole has lost its way. Our culture has lost its connection to the natural world and to the wisdom of our inner worlds.
What are some counterculture practices you can engage in? Name them; act on them.
Being a misfit is an invitation to be a leader within our everyday lives. This also translates into: "What we do, or don't do, matters." I explore this more in my recent book: The Clue of the Red Thread. We must become leaders (and teachers) that focus on service and collaboration. This leadership (as teacher, therapist, friend, writer, parent, healer, bus driver) is not ego-driven, measured through competition and comparison, or uses fear-mongering. The counterculture leader acts from practices of appreciation and love.
These paths of love, these counterculture practices of leadership are always there: the opportunity to lead with love, to be of service and to be a misfit in a society that perpetuates unkindnesses. Look for them.
What are some counterculture practices you could engage in right now?
How are you leading yourself and others with love? Write about that.
When and where do you feel misfitted? Explore that, write about that.
How have you been a misfit? Write about that.
"The Taoist becomes a misfit in society’s view, but one who practices the right kind of maladjustment: a discontent with injustice. This Wu-wei practice is one that brings one back to original peace, tending to make one a countercultural misfit, for one cooperates with a different energy than that which created injustice. The Taoist takes on a preparation of a different order. He is counterculturally feminine. He receives, gets in touch with his inner womb, lives with the nonanalytical, and processes all experience (social, private, good or bad) as his training. The Taoist harvests these processes, which he reinvests in the wise revisioning of the world. This is how the world changes. Peaceful change in the world, or softening anyone’s hard-set attitudes, has never happened through direct confrontation." Tao Te Ching, Power for the Peaceful, A New Translation by Marc S. Mullinax