Hope: Why I Get Up in the Morning

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Hope: Why I Get Up in the Morning

By Jan Larraine Cox 

Since we are mostly vaccinated and moving forward one step at a time, perhaps we can dream new dreams again, investigate new possibilities and move in new directions. Time to let go of regrets and old resentments for a powerful renewal based on hope! 

Writer Allison Sher suggests creating your own mission statement. Step one is asking what would you like to see be different in the world? Step two is determining how you can use your gifts to contribute to this change.  Finally, Sher recommends combining the two steps into an actionable item. 

She talks about combining reflection and action into the practice of praxis. From medieval Latin, praxis is the process by which a theory or skill is realized or enacted. 

Environmental activist Greta Thunberg demonstrates just how powerful praxis can be when enacted in today’s world. As she says, “No step is too small. There is no time to wait for new technology to protect the environment: do it now.” 

Thunberg has been a leading activist in spite of having been born with Asperger’s syndrome, which she considers a gift. She feels we people belong to the earth, and must preserve it.  Rather than the other way around, where the earth belongs to us, she says we don’t have the right to prolong the environmental crisis we find ourselves in.   

How Hope Can Move Us Forward

Hope can focus us to take action on possibilities to protect our earth, and that develops a continually growing faith. 

We are at a turning point where we have possibly spiraled upward toward opportunity and empowerment, having made it this far through the pandemic. Positive steps not only kept us safe during the pandemic. These steps also kept us from falling back into fear and immobilization. 

Perhaps we remember the Serenity Prayer which states: “Give me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” 

Hope through prayer. From Pixabay

On this journey we have been on during the pandemic, many of us have realized serenity and also that one of the most important relationships we have is with ourselves. 

Beyond financial rewards or social status achievements, we may have learned in the past year that all this is meaningless if our health is sacrificed.  

Native Americans considered power, wealth and status a kind of mind virus they called wetiko. They saw it in the European colonists when they landed on the East Coast of North America.  Like a cultural epidemic, while under the spell of wetiko and its symptom of narcissism, one cannot see that others’ lives are as important as one’s own life. 

Because our actions have consequences it is imperative that we find the balance between give and take in our lives and communities. 

And so, we are on a journey where we can rethink and reimagine life from here. The Japanese call it ikigai, or why I get up in the morning. From infant to toddler to elderhood, we can create a space for play, passion and purpose. On this path, we continue to learn specifically how each of us is capable of living life with more meaning. 

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