I, like so many others, was crushed when it seemed that hate won the day back in November. Though I know not all those who voted for Trump did so because of the misogynist or racist views the man has it worried me just the same. Even reading that it was with 26% of eligible voters that won him the White House, did little to lift my spirits. So much news today (both real and fake) spout hatred and fear and anger. I felt the urge to put forth more useful emotions. So I did what I often do, I turned to writing poetry.
Until now my verses mostly were for the eyes of loved ones. I assume my fear of criticism and rejection is a common fear for writers. But I’ve decided to get over myself and run the risk of coming across as presumptuous in thinking that I have words worthy enough to help others. I’m buoyed by a few books I’ve read. In the stead of thinking I can come up with pillars of hope all by myself, I turned to three lists I’ve come across in my reading. I’ll be posting a pillar periodically. What the period is, I can’t yet say.
The Book of Joy
The Dalai Lama and Archbishop Tutu have suffered plenty. In this book, they put together the 8 Pillars of Joy. It is because of these pillars that they can remain so positive and hopeful in a world that has been tremendously unfair to them. I’ve taken each of their pillars and written about them. They are:
I’ve also written a few verses on the African concept of Ubuntu, which I learned about reading this book.
Life Is Good
I read this book right after The Book of Joy. While not nearly as profound as the former, this book traces the history of the Life is Good clothing line. Theirs is a great story and a story of positivity. It’s one worth sharing. In it they list 10 Life Is Good Superpowers
The Noble Eightfold Path
This didn’t come from a book but rather from many books. I hate to preach to others. But as a Buddhist, I live my life by this path. I felt I needed to complete the trifecta with steps that help me each and every day. As The Dalai Lama and The Archbishop proved in The Book of Joy, just because you’re not of a certain faith doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from its tenants. So with that in mind, I wrote about The Path.
- Right View
- Right Intention
- Right Speech
- Right Action
- Right Livelihood
- Right Effort
- Right Mindfulness
- Right Concentration
Though I do so with my heart a-flutter with fear of harsh judgment, I’m sharing my words in order to help spread a message of hope. Though it’s a trite thought, I truly feel that if my words can help just one person during this divisive time, then I’ll be happy.
First off is a more poetic reasoning for what I’m doing: Hope.