Earth Day’s reminder that small acts add up to real change
This morning in yoga, the teacher greeted each person at the front desk wishing us happy Earth day. A pleasant reminder to send some love to our one and only. As she welcomed us to our mats, she talked about ahimsa, which in Sanskrit means non-injury; not causing harm.
This ethical principle is the standard for how actions are judged in many eastern religions. Leaving things as good as they were when they were found. Ideally, better. Non-injury. It’s easy to see how this applies to a yoga practice. Aligning your expectations of what a pose should look like with what’s in the best interest of your body. Honoring what your body needs in each moment.
This practice shows up in small acts all the time. How we might make space for someone’s mat in a tight class, the attitude we bring behind the wheel as we navigate traffic, showing patience and generosity to a busy waiter in the form of kindness and a good tip.
The other day I was listening to someone talk about the area he grew up in suburban Pennsylvania. Cul de sacs for days. Strip malls and homogeneity. Neighbors rarely came together. There didn’t seem to be a sense of community. As a kid he actually craved that some kind of natural disaster would strike forcing neighbors to need to come together. How nice that might feel to have a common purpose, he said.
Climate change-- and all the other massive challenges facing society -- feels insurmountable to overcome. But the challenge gives us a reason to come together and to innovate. On a day calendared to remind us to respect our earth, and in times when climate change and bizarre natural disasters are happening at concerning rates, I can commit to join others in more overtly practicing non-injury in small and bigger ways.
I’ve been slacking on my writing practice and need some kind of accountability. I don’t want to be a person who doesn’t walk her talk. And right now I am. Therefore, I’ve reissued to myself a #writingchallenge. If you’ve also gotten lazy with your writing practice or just feel like it may be something you’d like to incorporate, please hop on the #writingchallenge train. I’ll include some kind of #invitetowrite with each day’s post that may help inspire next time’s writing practice.
Today’s invite to write comes from a lyrically soothing new title track from Denver-based/ Guam-born Meta Sarmiento and Sierra Mendiola titled, Go Back. It’s a different sound then you may have come to expect from poet and rapper, @metasarmiento, and it’s lovely.
This Invite to Write comes from the chorus:
“if you could go back, what would you change? What would be different? What would remain?”
*Side note: Meta is one of the hosts of CD’s upcoming podcast, Citizen Discourse: The Podcast. We are packaging the pod and will keep you posted on launch date!