Today I drew the Three of Earth from the Gaian Tarot.
In the picture on the card, three women are hanging out in a kitchen. Each does their own work -one trims leaves, another pours liquid, and the third utilizes a mortar and pestle. They support each other’s efforts, they acknowledge that each is contributing to the collective good in her own way.
And that’s kind of like life, isn’t it? I believe most people are generally good. That isn’t to say we don’t all grapple with our shadow sides, and it isn’t to say our broader community isn’t damaged by those shadows. It also isn’t to say that some people aren’t blinded by privilege, greed, aggression…and it isn’t to say we shouldn’t call out those things when we witness them.
But most of us are trying to inhabit this space together. Most of us are trying to be a force for good. Most of us are making an effort to use our unique energy in a way that enhances the broader community.
And there are many ways to do good work, to contribute to the collective well-being. There are many ways to stand for justice, peace and love.
I think it’s important to be respectful of that fact – the fact that the way YOU stand for good might not look like the way someone else stands for good.
For you, standing for good might mean taking part in political activism. It might mean writing letters to your representatives. It might mean articulating your opinions on social media.
For you, standing for good might mean quietly praying or meditating. It might mean consulting your spirit guides or deities. It might mean going within and searching for ways that you can emanate love into the world.
For you, standing for good might mean allowing anger to flow through you, and then transforming that anger into passionate action.
For you, standing for good might mean staying calm, being at the center of the storm and holding space for other people.
For you, standing for good might mean writing poetry. Or painting. Or singing.
For you, standing for good might mean teaching your kids how to be informed, caring citizens of earth.
For you, standing for good might mean yelling. Speaking loudly. Shouting. Shaking people awake.
For you, standing for good might mean being quiet. Giving yourself the time and space you need to process your feelings before you react.
For you, standing for good might look like any combination of these things. Or it might look entirely different. None of these approaches are more or less valid than the others.
Your way of standing for good is not the only way. If you do not understand someone else’s approach, that’s okay. They might not understand yours. But we can all try to remember that there is no one right way. There is no one correct action that everyone should emulate.
Constructive criticism can be necessary, no doubt. I think it can be useful for us all to check in with each other, to ensure that we are bringing our A-game and not slipping into complacency. When we converse respectfully about what we are doing, we can help each other strengthen our individual efforts.
But nothing productive is accomplished through shaming and belittling someone else’s efforts. Good is built through conscious communication, collaboration and encouragement.
My good work might not be identical to your good work, but I appreciate that we can sit at this table together. We can do our own thing, while also respecting the unique flavors we each bring to the mix.
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