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Power

I’ve been thinking about power recently, partly because of a beautiful yellow calcite crystal that was my favorite gift this Christmas. For days, I couldn’t stop holding it in my hand. Now it sits on my alter next to a sweet rose quartz crystal that has been my companion for the last 18 months. They look like little mountains of love and power sitting next to each other.


Here’s what the slip of paper that came with the crystal says about its healing properties: “Yellow calcite is associated with the solar plexus, self confidence, and hope. It is said to be effective at clearing out old energy patterns and increasing personal motivation and drive. Yellow Calcite specifically is a clearer of accumulated self doubt, giving you the opportunity for a clean emotional slate.”

Raise your hand if, at some point in your life, you have needed some support around self confidence and moving through self doubt!


(This is me raising my hand.) ----->


Here’s a snapshot of my mental state this morning: I hate everything. I can’t get out of bed. It’s cold. If only I could _______ (usually involves stopping the negative thought processes that I’m stuck in), THEN I can be successful….happy….okay. But I can’t. I can’t do it. I hate everything.


And on and on.


Eventually, I stopped hitting the snooze button. I took myself through the paces of my morning routine. Start breakfast, shower, PT exercises, chanting, breathwork, meditation, eat breakfast, begin the rest of my day. During meditation, I sat with the yellow calcite in front of me, radiating out its power, filling my doubtful, weakened solar plexus with its energy. Maybe it was a combination of the crystal and the new moon energy. Maybe it was just coincidence. But after 20 minutes of meditation, I rose with new clarity.


By God, I am more powerful than anything I could ever imagine.

And – it’s not about me.


Wait, aren’t these two things in direct opposition to each other?


Not only do I have the power to create, which in itself is terrifying, but I have the power to decide – to DECIDE – how I want to be. Who I want to be. Which story I want to listen to. Which story I want to be part of.


I can decide to see scarcity, to stay small, to stay safe, to not be seen. I can decide to stay in a victim state of whatever challenging circumstances are around me this week. I can decide to give away my power. I can stay in negative thought patterns and old habits that no longer serve me. I can feel sorry for myself for X, Y and Z. I can stay stuck and unhappy and sad.


Or.


I can decide to be supported by the lavish resources available to me, in my spiritual practices and all around me. I can draw on and learn from wise teachers like the trees and the water, Wendell Berry, the ancient practices of Buddhism, the chanting of Hinduism, the prayers of Christianity, the poems of Mary Oliver, the support of my ancestors, the words of dear friends, a tight hug of a beloved family member and the love of my cat curled up on my lap as I write this. I can decide to see my life as blessed, as written in the stars to be magnificent, as magically resourced by the earth and moon and planets as I am willing to let myself believe.


I can choose practices of abundance and gratitude, or I can choose practices of scarcity and victimhood.


I can choose to stay in a story of brokenness – of tragic failure and breakdown that we as humans are witnessing as the world seems to crumble around us. I can choose to be victimized by the lack of control I feel, by the chaos, by the uncertainty. But that doesn’t bring anything good into the world around me. That just keeps my focus on me and my small story.


Or, I can choose to tell and be part of a story of wholeness – of right relationship with the Earth and others, of creating a different way rooted in justice and solidarity, of personal power to choose good and to be part of a love story, a story of goodness that exists in humanity and in all of life around us. I can choose to be empowered by the lack of control I feel, by the chaos, by the uncertainty as the ground beneath my feet shifts. I can choose to show up with my whole, brokenhearted self each day for the people around me and the vision I have for what the world could be and is already.


Which, I believe, is inherently good. Rooted in love. Fed by personal and collective power. Made magical through connection.


I’m sharing this with you now not to pat myself on the back for (momentarily) working through my own stuckness, but because it feels important to share honestly and vulnerably what it looks like to be human some days. And, more importantly, why it even matters that we’re human – inherently flawed, working our way through challenges, grief, loss, our own unique ways of being stuck, as well as ways that we’re called to grow. To expand. To strengthen. To get out of our own heads and show up. For some, that’s through words. For others, music. For others, showing up means wiping off the sticky counters and getting up for the fifth time that night with a crying toddler. Today, for me, it means sharing these words with you in the hopes that maybe they will be helpful for where you are today, too.


Here’s the question I’m interested in: What if we all really deeply knew and accessed our personal and collective power, and used it for good? What is possible then? For our future, for our children’s futures, for the fish and the birds and the water and the air? For each human life? For each non-human life? For me? For you? For the Earth? For humanity?

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