This week I have struggled to remain hopeful in the face of so much harm, even as I remind myself that Everything is in flux and changes. In the long term, no system is immune to that, no matter how much those in power might imagine a rule of a thousand years.
I have also floundered on my fears that my erasure, and the erasures of so many persons and peoples, will continue, even as I know in my heart that change requires we grieve and challenge the harm before us rather than remain fragmented in the suffering of our distinct peoples.
I believe the stories we share and the aid we give have immense power. The stories that have shaped the past forty plus years are losing their valence as people slowly awaken to their impacts on our lives. The more hidden stories, the ones that are shared in our meetings, the ones that arose from your Feminist explorations, and the Deepest stories from our various cultures hold great promise for helping us navigate the present moment and imagine a better way forward.
I imagine our anger and fear, our hopes and grief, are central to the power of those ancient, always rediscovered, stories we turn to in moments of need. Emotions make us tick, remind us we are alive, and place us firmly in lineages of experience. When they are grounded in courage, compassion, and caring they allow us to be real. When nurtured within community, they support healing.
I like to think our refusal to give up our humanity is the strongest weapon we possess in this battle for the future. Sharing our stories widely offers others the opportunity to join with us in seeking and creating a better way. Our stories, rather than competing as those in power wish, can build layers of nuance,complexity, and experience that together encourage solidarity, that rare jewel.
I hope there is room in that solidarity for our flaws, our fears, and our failures of empathy, for surely we each experience and perform many. Has not the thrust of so much our dreaming been to try to make space for one another’s raw personhood?
Perhaps that is the crux of the moment: space just to be.