In 2011 I started my blog, Make the World Go Round. It lasted for six months. In 2014 I started Coachable Heart. It lasted two years. In 2016, Gish (a.k.a. GISHWHES) changed my life. This group unites each year for one week. They commit random acts of kindness. They create amazing things. They challenge the status quo with statements like “Death to Normalcy.” Now, in 2018, I’m inspired to combine the three and go back to work.
On Wednesday, November 7, 2018 a gunman killed 12 innocent people and himself and wounded more than 20. It was the fourth soft-target, shooting in two weeks. “Soft targets represent simple daily life. People come and go. They expect to be safe as they pick up a cup of coffee, deposit their paychecks, fill prescriptions or grab a bite to eat. Their guards are down.” (https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/08/us/soft-targets-thousand-oaks-bar-shooting/index.html).
The next night the Los Angeles Kings issued a statement to amplify the message that enough is enough. It’s time to move beyond thoughts and prayers and do something to change the world we live in.
I am not a political person. I am not going to make a difference by becoming an activist. Mahatma Gandhi tells us to “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” After the 2015 Paris bombings, Martin Luther King Jr.’s words resurfaced. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” People are being divided as they struggle to respond to this senseless act and to each other. The very next day saw eruptions of wildfire in both Northern and Southern California.
People are wishing ill will on other human beings because we no longer know how to respond.
This is counter-intuitive and has led to my own response to “be the light.” At times we like these we all need a safe place to go and reflect. To grieve. To heal. For me, those places tend to be the safety of my home, surrounded by loved ones, or somewhere outside in nature. There’s a Wildland Conservancy in our local mountains that always comes to mind when I need to escape and get away. It’s definitely one of my happy places.
With the internet and connectivity being what it is now, people often turn to social media for an escape. That’s okay. We’ve adapted to the times and it’s how we cope. So my hope is to create a digital escape for people, somewhere to feel like they are in the safety of their own home. Somewhere that people can go to get that escape. But also somewhere for people to learn how to engage and make a difference.
It will take us all to turn the tide. We need activists to dream up a new world. They start the political change that will bring our world back into balance. We also need people to follow the path to this new world. The rest will lead their families, their communities and their social groups to new options. We need to know what those options are.
Here’s what I hope to accomplish:
- I plan to highlight some of these options. I’ll even try to remain unbiased.
- I will find and share amazing things that allow people to see the beauty that still exists in this world.
- I will provide information about things that I am creating – my own personal way to cope.
- I will profile charities to show how people are making a difference.
- I will share ways to cope. Show how to have a different response.
- I may even encourage you to write to your elected officials.
Most of us will never start an organization, run for office, or stand in protest. Yet, none of the people that will do those things can do any of them without people like us. People who want to stay on the sidelines but have the heart to help and make a difference. We bring our skills to everything we do, and it takes them all to Make the World Go Round. Join me when you need a safe place to escape, or when you’re ready to get involved. Share with me so I can share with others. We’re all in this together. I’ve seen this going around on social media and it’s a great start, this is what it says.
(Facebook // The Hippies were Right)
I am starting today, I hope you’ll join me.