Words can hardly describe how most of us are feeling right now. Many of us feel like we are drowning in the weight of a broken human spirit and in a disbelief that people of our world could treat each other the way people have been treated this week.
As we discern how this situation will help us, strengthen us or prepare us for the future, we can ultimately find gratitude, not for the event itself but, for its ripple effect.
We have experienced many fundamentally deep-rooted tragedies this week.
We are all experiencing The Deep Plunge right now. My hope for you is that you also experience The Great Stillness that comes with that plunge.
Imagine standing on the ledge of a rock diving cliff, staring down at the dark blue lake water beneath you as you decide to jump in. Upon impact of the water’s barrier, there is great immediate pain. You feel the velocity of your body coursing through the water as it rushes past your face, feeling a bit out of control, with no idea when you will slow down until you ultimately stop your descent.
This moment is a place of stillness. The place and the millisecond before your body changes its’ trajectory and chooses between staying down below and drowning or rising to the surface in survival.
It is in this moment of stillness where we change trajectory.
And it is rising to the surface where you see your ripple effect where you know you have survived and can see the vast reach of your splash. Your ripple moves ducks, moves fish, moves dirt and some ripples even make it to shore.
These waters we are treading in right now are full of ripples of intensity. Our waters are filled with racism, broken trust, and a human spirit that longs for more. It longs to change the trajectory of what we have seen this past week.
We are all experiencing our own Deep Plunge.
You see as we all jump into these waters, gravity sees no difference between anyone one of us. As we jump, we are all pulled down to the center of the earth. Perhaps our mass may make our trip faster or slower, longer or shorter but we are all pulled into the same moment, the moment of stillness. The moment we can all choose to change our trajectory. It is in this stillness where we meet as One.
We all reach this place.
Tragedy works the same way. It hurts really intensely in the beginning, you feel yourself going deeper, wondering how deep you’ll go, feeling out of control with the emotions racing by you.
Once you reach stillness and pause, you rise.
With every inch closer to the surface, your body begins to feel lighter and lighter. When you reach the surface, you finally take a breath, smile, exhale and let go.
The Great Stillness is the pivotal moment of The Big Plunge. But you don’t have to jump off a cliff into a beautiful lake to find your moment of stillness.
It’s not about the lake.
It’s about finding this moment and quietness inside of you that is connected to something far greater than you. It is this place where we are all connected.
Of course, meditation is a great way to find stillness but many children and teenagers might not be as interested in meditation. I have found our nightly bedtime gratitude practice to be the perfect amount of reflection and stillness needed to help them reach the surface of any of their fears, struggles and worries during this time. I help them see their powerful ripple effect and how they have survived yet one more of life’s daily challenges.
It is time that we willingly enter this space without having to jump off the cliff. This space is not in the streets looting, it is not in shouting or fighting. It is in the place we enter where we can all feel and be connected.
It in the place of stillness.
When we are in our place of stillness, we connect to everyone else’s place of stillness. As we do this, we begin to spread love from your heart to others.
This is what Mahatma Gandhi meant when he said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
You are powerful, sheltering in place, sitting in your home. As you shift your heart and offer its love to all those who have been affected this week, you make a change in the world.
This week, I invite you into your own stillness to connect and meditate. Begin with 5 minutes of meditation today. Quiet yourself and allow your thoughts to take the Deep Plunge into The Great Stillness of your heart and watch your ripple effect change the trajectory of the world.