As global concern for the state of the environment rises, I observe how we face this problem in the same way we do most situations in our lives: we want to fix something that we perceive as terribly wrong. When this happens we look immediately to find someone to blame. But in doing so, we sidestep taking responsibility. When we see something outside that we don't like, we can choose to complain, even to fight, but in order to give a real contribution to any situation, we must start taking responsibility. How do I take responsibility for something like the environment? Something that seems so huge and so unrelated to my own actions? I am not negating the positive effects of making greener choices or reducing your footprint, but I am talking about going inwards, to heal the root causes of destructive behavior within yourself.
We have so many judgments about what's happening in the world; the destruction of the rain forests, the poisoning of our oceans ... oil leaks, tribal peoples killing gorillas in order to make money to live; all these things are happening in the world, and obviously we want to change that. But what is the root of all these behaviors? Greed, lack, and separation. We feel like there is not enough - not enough natural resources, not enough money, not enough work - but although these seem like national and even global problems, this feeling of lack stems from our inner state, our own personal feeling of incompletion. If I feel unfulfilled, I experience need. Until I feel whole, this need will influence my actions, my responses. My giving will not be inclusive, it will not be unconditional. When we find internal abundance however, we start to transform everything into that abundance. If I'm abundant, I don't let an aspect of myself starve. If I'm abundant, I don't go and burn down the rain forest. If I'm abundant, I don't throw poison into the ocean. So I become that abundance, and because consciousness experiences union, as it elevates, it affects all aspects of duality. Everything becomes that abundance. The Avatar movie illustrates clearly how humanity sees something they want and then justifies the means by transforming any obstacle in the way into the enemy. It was incredible to watch. The greed that fueled the need to possess the "unattainable" - the precious stone of the Na'vi - was an extreme example of how we justify our grasping and fear of lack, to go and destroy; making the other into the enemy. Ultimately, we have to realize we're all one and that our ideas are just ideas, that the need to protect comes from fear, and the capacity to destroy in order to protect comes from fear as well. So what is the message within all this? The message is that we have to find out true essence. We have to realize that we're all love, we're all one and that many of the roles we have been playing are getting to the point where they no longer serve. Like dogs chasing their tails, we keep doing the same thing and expecting a different result. This was another thing I got from watching Avatar: in the end, it's the same old story: good fights evil, and good wins. Right and wrong. How about instead of going to war in the first place, we go inwards, learn to heal ourselves, and realize that everything we reject on the outside is a part of ourselves? It's time to change the story. Just because we have always done something the same way doesn't mean there is no alternative.
Let's stop pointing the finger, playing the blame game. Let's start going inwards, and when something bothers us, asking Where is that within myself? How can I heal that within myself? We cannot single-handedly change the world, but we can change ourselves. And that, my dear friends, is the most exciting, challenging and incredible adventure I have ever embarked upon.
Isha's latest book and movie, Why Walk When You Can Fly? explains her system for self-love and the expansion of consciousness. Her website is www.whywalkwhenyoucanfly.com.
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