The headlines this year have been so unexpected that I didn’t think I could be surprised any more. But, really, who would have thought that “bubbles” would appear at the top of the news? I’m reading about sports bubbles, college bubbles, family bubbles, film making bubbles, and so many more. These bubbles have clearly come to symbolize safety for us amidst this sea of risk.
The safety of our bubbles is ensured by the responsible behavior of each member. I saw a TV interview with an 8-year-old girl who has been in a bubble with her family and two other families during this pandemic. She said, “I know that I have to follow our rules, or I will put everyone else in danger.” I was so touched, I had to write about it.
But the interconnectedness of the bubbles is diametrically opposed to the denial of the value of human life we are also seeing. A major university recently found their presumption that students would feel the interconnectedness of the college bubble was incorrect. It had to close its campus and move to virtual learning after a week of zealous partying produced a high spike in Covid cases.
Why would they presume that students would respect the bubble in the first place? I would have. I am a baby boomer. I grew up in a time when I felt intense interconnectedness as many of our citizens put aside differences to win World War II.
What war are we fighting now? It feels to me like we are fighting each other. And it feels like we are fighting to find ourselves amidst our current difficulties. But I know who we are. I see people at their deepest levels. At these levels we are always goodness and light. We come to earth with goodness and light but, during our development, life experiences cause layers of fear and pain. Sometimes we act from goodness and light and sometimes we act from fear and pain.
I feel an overabundance of fear and pain in the world right now. It is ubiquitous and uncomfortable, and we do all we can to avoid it. Some avoid it through isolation, which increases loneliness and triggers smoldering fear. Others throw caution to the wind and have fun, which also carries consequences.
But we can choose what we put into the world. Each of us has the ability to be purposeful about this. We can each choose to bring light to our bubbles and to our communities and our country.
The challenge is that we must first see our light and cultivate our goodness.
What cultivates your goodness? What helps you see your light? Some of us find daily meditation or journaling penetrates the layers of fear and pain to reach our light. Others are more active, finding their goodness through creativity or service to others. We may have to reach a little to find new ways to experience our light during this pandemic.
As the ancient philosopher, Rumi tells us, “The lamps may be different, but the light is the same.” The world needs your light.