Good Grief!

The world has changed. There is no way of going back to what was "normal" before COVID-19 and climate change. That is actually a good thing. While the economic engines were chugging at full speed, we were headed straight for an ecocidal cliff. A course correction was imperative. So where are we headed now?

The world is grieving, not just for the dead from COVID-19, but for the passing of the life we knew. Denial is the first stage of grief. It can last for a long time. Then come bargaining, anger, depression and eventually acceptance. Sometimes, all the stages come barreling down on us simultaneously like a tsunami. Sometimes they ride our normal emotional tides one after another, with just a bit more depth and melancholy.

Grief is a very individual process. There is no right or wrong way to process it. It takes however long it takes. We can try to bury it along with the dead, but like a zombie, it rises from the grave and comes to haunt us until we finally sit with it. Unlike zombies, however, grief is not a fiend. It is a friend in dark disguise, who invites us into a deepening of our love. Some of the most beautiful and haunting music was born out of deep grief. It breaks your heart wide open.

This, too, shall pass, and in the passing, grief gifts us with the opportunity to re-examine our priorities. Do I love living where I live and whom I live with? Is my job a true expression of what I want to bring to the world in this one precious life? Yes, I do believe in infinite consciousness living through countless incarnations. But who I am here and now is unique and irreplaceable. Am I expressing my talents to the best of my ability, or am I holding back?

“Follow your bliss!” is the advice Joseph Campbell gave us. By following the calling of our hearts, we fulfill the desire of our soul. We are never given a heart-felt desire without the means to fulfill it. An old Chinese proverb says: "even a journey of 10,000 miles begins with the first step." It is up to us to take that step.

At this point, any step forward is positive, even if it only serves to highlight where we don’t want to go. There are no mistakes, only opportunities for growth and learning.  Course corrections can happen at any time. Another old proverb says: "who is a wise person? Someone who makes good decisions. How does one learn to make good decisions? By making lots of bad decisions first."

Be bold! Trust your Self! And when the music starts to play, dance!