By Dr. Dina Evan We are living in extraordinary times. We have young and older people marching side by side for women’s rights, for educational funding, for LGBT rights, for...
By Dr. Dina Evan
We are living in extraordinary times. We have young and older people marching side by side for women’s rights, for educational funding, for LGBT rights, for fair wages, for sexual abuse issues, for drug abuse and the mis-use of power. Today, we are really standing up — but I am still worried.
I know it’s different now, the numbers are greater, the anger is hotter, the demonstrations are bigger, and the demands are louder. However, in my life, over the last 40 plus years, along with millions of other people, I have donated thousands of dollars and written hundreds of letters to every cause I believe in.
I’ve marched with Whoopi for AIDS funding, I have marched with Gloria Steinem and Kathy Najimy and spoken to legislative bodies for women’s rights. My children and I have walked hundreds of precincts getting signatures on petitions. With only three states left needed to ratify, I fasted 37 days on water for The passage of the Equal Right Amendment which was started in 1920! And yet, we are not much farther ahead with any of these issues. So, what’s the problem?
I think it’s because we are looking out there, instead of in here. Many of us are still looking for someone else to fix it. Change never occurs on a grand scale unless we change inside first.
I want to challenge us to stop, be impeccable in our integrity and ask ourselves some deep questions, questions about how much we believe what we say we believe.
For instance, we are all feeling discouraged about the number of lies coming out of Washington. We feel unsafe and no longer know what to believe. We are rightfully angry we are not getting the truth about much of anything. But, when was the last time you told what you consider to be a white lie, or a big whopper, to someone in your family, your business, to your boss, your kid, your partner or beloved — or anyone else? Can you commit to impeccable truth telling? It can’t change out there, if lies are still happening in here.
We are upset and appalled about the sexual abuse and misuse of power we see in the world today.
Women are enraged, rightfully so and men are enraged at being accused after years of thinking what they were doing was acceptable. However, is there a friend or someone in your family who is being abused — and have you offered to help? Have you volunteered at a crisis center? Are you allowing be yourself to be abused or dealing with a misuse of power in your own life and needing to reach out for support? It can’t change out there if abuse is still happening in here.
We see parents today that are so worried about their kid’s education and they want changes made in the schools. But, how many of us have put our cell phones and lap tops away every night to spend quality time with our kids on homework or just being together, talking? It can’t change out there if we are disconnected in here.
How many of us think what is happening to minorities is outrageous? And yet, how many of us still feel we are more entitled, or should not have to share our blessings with other people? How many of us still feel some fear when around a person from another country? How many of us stop to smile, shake a hand or invite a family in for dinner who is different from us? How many of us still don’t understand there is only one planet and one people? It can’t change out there if prejudice is still happening in here.
Here’s the cold truth. We are living what we created and nothing is going to change until we do. It’s all about the energy. Accumulative energy creates change, but not by asking for someone else to do it for us. I think I have told this story before but it’s worth telling again.
Gandhi is a well know spiritual leader. One afternoon a woman brought her daughter to him, having walked from a very far away city. She asked that Gandhi tell her daughter to stop eating candy. Gandhi looked and her and told her to come back in a week. She was exhausted and confused but agreed.
The next week she returned with the same request, “Tell my daughter to stop eating candy.” Once again, Gandhi looked and her and told her to come back in a week. Now she was really angry given how difficult the road back and forth was, but she finally agreed. A week later she returned with the same request and Gandhi said to the daughter, “Stop eating candy!” Well the mother was totally frustrated and demanded to know, “Why did you make me come back three times to get you to tell her that!” Gandhi responded, “I had not yet stopped eating candy myself.”
Let us have that same impeccable integrity and make the changes we need on the inside so that together we can change the direction in which we and the world are going. I believe in us. I believe in you. Change is not out there, it’s in here.