Hello everyone. I hope you’re all having a good day/night, wherever you happen to be. Today I want to address something other than feel-good slice of life posting.
As you know, Goddess Within is meant to focus on good things, on pleasant things, on things that might–however briefly–take us away from the darkness and hatred surrounding us in society. Negativity hasn’t really had any place on this site because we all need a break from terrible news and events. And because I struggle so much with mental illness, I usually need all the goodness I can get, and I know you do too whether you suffer from mental illness or not. I take joy in sharing lovely things with you all.
However, if we never acknowledging the negativity around us, if we stay silent, if we always sweep it under the rug because it’s not our problem is part of the problem. We can hide in our protective bubbles, safe and nurtured, but still the outside world thunders and screeches away around us and hurts people every second of every day.
And are any of these problems a surprise? No, they’re not. They shouldn’t surprise anyone. They’re problems that have been occurring for a very long time; they just don’t always make the news.
If we truly want to know compassion and to practice love and kindness to those around us, we can’t always sit in silence and pretend it doesn’t happen to anyone outside our circle of loved ones. It’s always happening, and countless people are suffering as a result. Yes, right in our own respective countries.
Is it uncomfortable to face? Yes. Is it unpleasant to face? Yes. Does it turn your stomach and make you lose sleep at night? If it doesn’t, then it should. Because when you look outside yourself and discover what’s happening to other people, you realize how frightening even everyday life can truly be for them. Even if it has never happened to you or to anyone you know, it happens to other people so much that turning a blind eye to them is not only foolish–it’s downright dangerous.
Don’t understand why people are complaining, or are afraid, or are angry? Talk with them. Get to know them. Do searches. Read blogs and unbiased news sources. You may be surprised by the things you end up finding are debunked, while other things that you’d think happen only in movies and crime shows absolutely do happen and they happen every day.
Learning is the first step. Offering any form of help you can give is the next. Whatever your beliefs, whatever your political leanings, whatever your faith; ending hate begins with your empathy, and your action, and your unwillingness to tolerate hate.
Take time to nurture yourself, too, of course. Running yourself raw and ragged helps no one, especially not yourself.
But whatever you do, don’t succumb to silence.
This is directed at no one person, but everyone at once. If you don’t know how to help, you can sign meaningful petitions, donate to charities and organizations, volunteer somewhere, verbally shut down hate wherever you find it, and listen with all the understanding you can muster, do what you can to amplify the voices of the marginalised. Get intentional about seeking out articles or videos by people of colour and signal boosting them on social media.
There are many ways to help, and they don’t stop at my little list here. I’m going to use this voice, this mind, and even this keyboard to do my part to help others and to shut down hate. I hope you’ll join me from your neck of the woods.