images-3I have been deeply moved in the last few days by the vision, the struggles, the inner strength and courage of people working for social, economic and environmental justice…and deeply touched as well by the magnitude of the challenges we have faced and overcome, and by those we still face.  I believe we will never “arrive”…  the work will never be done, but it is also very clear that we still have a long road ahead, and that we must keep putting one foot in front of the other.  

Recently we celebrated Martin Luther King Day.  I have just images-2relived parts of his journey again with Harry Belefonte, a friend and admirer of King, as he talks about that life and those times (scroll down to Tapping into MLK Jr.).   Belefonte ends the interview with the thought that by reconnecting to the larger Vision, he “gets a pretty good sense of what he has to do… we are obliged to pursue the path of belief that it will happen.”  The visions of justice are “too good to not happen.”   

I found President Obama’s State of the Union speech last night inspiring (even granted its self-serving omissions, reframing, and misrepresentations).  His call for more equity, balance, cooperation…touched me, and lifted my heart.  May I, may we, be part of the turning that is happening in countless ways, in towns and cities, in some states, and many places around the world…

We’ve been travelling the rough road for centuries.  Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, as early, and as late as 1937:  “But here is the challenge to our democracy: In this nation I see tens of millions of its citizens […] who at this very moment are denied the greater part of what the very lowest standards of today call the necessities of life […] The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

Yesterday I attended a salon meeting of the Suzuki Elders on the topic of dealing with the emotions that come up around the devastating losses and implications of Climate Change.  Frustrating and inspiring!  Tonight I go out to canvas with LeadNow, a non-partisan advocacy group with the goals of Open DemocracyFair Economy, and Climate Justice.  LeadNow is working to see that Stephen Harper does not get a majority government again (which he did in the last election with less than 40% of the popular vote.   He is dismantling, with considerable efficacy, the democratic process in Canada.  It would be impressive if it weren’t so tragic and scary.)

Onward and upward…several steps forward and certainly some back.  (There would be much more to say about the place of inner work, of other forms of union, about how union relates to Oneness, Interconnectedness.  But this for another piece.)

UnknownFor now, have a listen to Howard Zinn, one of my favorite activists, who, in an inspiring piece called On Getting Along, puts it this way: “Don’t look for a moment of total triumph. See it as an ongoing struggle, with victories and defeats, but in the long run the consciousness of people growing.  So you need patience, persistence, and need to understand that even when you don’t “win,” there is fun and fulfillment in the fact that you have been involved, with other good people, in something worthwhile.”

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, and growth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Follow me on Twitter, let’s be friends on Facebook :-)

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