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I was minding my own business on this, the second day of my pre-Christmas vacation, taking a voluntary break from news feeds and focusing on catching up with my hobby writing on various blogs and social media. I love doing that. Then I noticed a status update by a cousin, something about gun control and what would it take. I didn't take it all in, assuming it was simply a comment on the ever present pseudo-confusion about whether or not it is the fault of guns or of humans that death is caused through shooting.
I carried on, writing about essential oils and this and that, and uploading and download, not reading the news. Instead, I started to pick up a thread of anguish in short status updates, and without consulting the news service I gradually became aware that something horrible had taken place.
When I did read it all, on this and that news service, it had the effect of numbing my brain, and draining the joy out of my heart. I sat still and frozen for a long time. It may be impossible to understand the impact the shooting has had on the family and those involved, yet when I think about the children in my life who I love I can feel an immense and deep rush of emotion when I imagine life without any one of them. And my heart expands in love for those who have been affected by this event.
Now I’m going to call all the children in my life that I know and love, to hasten to tell them I love them, very, very, much, because in the wake of the news from Newtown, Connecticut I know of little more to do than what my faith tradition has taught me and that is to love one another.
I notice I want to understand more than what is currently available to be understood by me. I want to make sense of it. But, as is typically the case, during times of immense shock, sadness and tragedy, we humans are least capable of making sense of things, and must trust the passage of time to create perspective and produce understanding. In the mean time, while in this state of disorientation, I try to be mindful to not abandon my love for humanity.
During times of emotional distress, I use this modified meditation to help me find peace. I used it with great effectiveness during the trouble Haiti experienced, and I offer it here today again on behalf of the people of Connecticut:
As love enters, fear vanishes. I am so filled with Love that no fear can enter my thoughts. I am not afraid, for I know that a Perfect Intelligence guards and governs all of life. This perfect Love in me casts out all fear. I know that the Spirit of Life within the people of Connecticut is alive and strong.
There is nothing in me that can obstruct the awareness that Spirit is where they are. I daily remind myself that their Life is wrapped in Gods Life. I know there is something at the center of my being that is absolutely certain of Itself, and that same something is in all people.
I know that this consciousness I am establishing in me is making a beneficial and powerful contribution to their experience and is adding to the ease and success of the relief effort.
Today I have faith that this word of prayer I am speaking is dissolving every negative thought or impulse that would throw a shadow of unbelief across the threshold of my expectation.
I feel my oneness with the people of this country and through that oneness I release a powerful courage and strength. I give thanks that through this knowing, something magnificent is being birthed. I lift my cup of acceptance, knowing that the Divine outpouring will fill it to the brim.
Today I consciously identify myself with everything that belongs to goodness, truth and beauty, and I do so for my fellow citizens. I identify myself with the Living Spirit–with all the power, all the presence and all the life there is. I am at peace.