Today is a day for remembering. For many in America, this is a day that marks the unofficial start of summer and a time to remember those who sacrificed their lives in service to our country. There will be cookouts at family gatherings, holiday sales, and stories of veterans on the internet, radio, and TV. We will remember those who died because of war, and we may choose to remember other loved ones no longer with us.
For those who registered for the military or were drafted to go to war, we thank you for your dedication and commitment, whether wanted or unwanted. Please forgive us as a nation for the ways your lives were forever altered.
For those who created past wars and want to create new ones, can we please take a moment to reflect?
We’d all agree that humanity has advanced and evolved in countless ways over the past few centuries. How has our consciousness in regard to peace expanded? If a nation’s peace and protection are their goals, let’s contemplate what those intentions can look like in 2018.
Can we continue to war our way to peace? Or are we being called to claim another way to experience the peace we seek?
How do we honor the service and ultimate sacrifice of the military when we allow the very principles service-members fought for to morph into a pretend nationalism we see today in the United States? Authoritatively being ordered to worship a flag or symbol of any kind without honoring what it truly stands for is shallow at best and fascist at worst.
Exposing sexual harassment by powerful men, speaking out against racism and prejudice, shining light on our out-of-balance incarceration system, and kneeling to protest wrongdoings in our country are just some of the ways we call out injustice and a desire for transformation. Our nation was founded by rebels who believed they could create something better, something grand, something visionary.
Can we consider an and rather than an either or approach—both loving our country and desiring it to evolve and be the best version it can be? Loving relationships with children or grandchildren require adults in their lives to show them when they’ve gotten off track, guide them back onto the path, and help them grow into fine adults themselves. Would we ever think that pointing out when a child is off track we’ve stopped loving them? No, the exact opposite is true.
You have come to expect inspiration from me and the Venerable Women philosophy—and I start each blog post fully aligned with that intention. I believe that inspiration comes in many forms and my hope is to share something deeply personal in this message: my desire to see a world 100% without war—with fulfilled humans who love and are loved standing upon our planet made healthy anew. Do you share this hope?
The Sanskrit word jaap inspires an affirmation which is “I continually remember to remember.” Looking back and remembering, like a bee flitting from flower to flower, pollinates a garden of fresh knowing for how we can live today. What will our garden look like in 100 years? Who do we need to be as individuals and collectively to make the garden of our shared experience on earth beautiful and bountiful?
May we all continue to remember to remember.