Before we had a name, there was an awake awareness.
That was completely connected, did not know differences.
Before we entered school, there was an alive, sensing being.
Ready to play, learn and expand.
Before we were categorized and compared, there was already a perfectly whole being.
Before we realized we were in a culture, a race, a gender, there was an unconditioned self.
Before we got an occupation, there was already a human being that was fully conscious.
Before we took on the roles of worker, sister, brother, parent, the good one, the black sheep, the athlete, the computer geek, that simple awareness you started with was still there.
None of these roles are bad, they are all amazing ways your self has taken on to experience and express itself in this world!
I say this to remind you of all the layers of conditioning that create the identity you know as “me”.
I write this to remind you that the identities that create pain and suffering can be changed.
Look at the rules you live by. Are they working for you or are they old?
Who made them anyway?
They are not necessarily bad or wrong, but look at all the rules and ideas that create separation.
Underneath, you are that energy that has choice to move in different ways, to create new patterns, to step in and out of roles and to move towards what feels good.
I have found countless times that when the armour is down, the roles are taken away, trauma or triumph happens, there is an unfolding of a self that at first might be scared, but opens to pure love and empathy.
Can we see ourselves and others beyond our roles, our skin, our appearance?
Can we know each other as more the same than different?
Can we look at strangers on the street and say “just like me”?
Try it and you will see how much easier it is to be joined, and that separation creates tension.
It is empathy that can lead us now. This does not mean patronizing, people-pleasing, over-giving or codependence.
It means realizing that in our hearts and bodies we are intricately joined in our joy and in our suffering.
We are built to connect, not separate. Trauma creates disconnection and disconnection is trauma.
We are built to belong.
Empathy is belonging.
Take care of yourself and others