Small Acts of Kindness Matter

It’s been a while since I sat down to write from the heart. I’ve been leaning into community, friendship, and the embodiment practice that sustains me as tragedies and violence in the world multiply.

If you too have been quieter than usual, I hope you aren’t giving yourself too hard a time about it. There’s still so much beauty and kindness present, but it gets drowned out.

When the world is on fire, it’s hard to believe that one act of kindness matters.

Especially kindness towards yourself.

In fact, studies show that we grossly underestimate the positive effects of small acts of kindness, stopping us from doing what our heart asks us to do. Negativity bias really throws us for a loop.

I have been looking at the roots of my own anger and rage. I see and feel into the damage that unprocessed pain and rage can cause in this world. I’ve been trying to be kinder to myself and more forgiving around those roots as a starting point.

And I’ve been preparing for an upcoming Cranial Nerve Sequencing workshop, the first I’ve done in a while. 

Sometimes I get messages from my nerves. Cranial nerve 6, the abducens which moves your eyes side to side, says: “who is beside me?” A very soothing question to ask when you are sitting meditation in the Zendo.

Cranial nerve 10, the now-famous vagus, says, “I will slowly caress and digest everything you decide to take inside your body!” That goes for conversations and food too.

People all over the world are trying their best to channel their feelings into constructive action, but it’s very messy and imperfect.

I have been leaning into how the work I do might support folks who are longing for peace and want to take constructive, sustainable action that involves teaching and learning.

As “chance” would have it, the recent opportunity to share my work with Afghan women through an organization called Afghans for Progressive Thinking was right in line with two of my core values:

  • Embodiment begins with self-acceptance, not self-improvement.
  • Embodiment is a human right, and can disrupt inhumane and oppressive systems.

It is very difficult to accept the circumstances that Afghan women are experiencing right now. (HERE is a link for learning more, but don’t feel beholden to click on it if you don’t feel well resourced.)

We all deserve the right to absorb only as much as we can handle at any one moment.

I’d like to give these women a little bit more of a voice than they currently have.

I can still feel into  the inherent sweetness of the brief connections I made with individual women during the workshop. Like young people all over the planet, all they want to do is make a positive contribution in this world

I also got a taste of the rage, despair, and isolation that is gender apartheid.

The urge to fight back with violence is very strong, even when winning is impossible, when you are in despair and rage,

Knowing this has helped me turn a sharper eye to similar tactics being used by the far right in our own country. They want to control our bodies, police our relationship to gender, and limit our access to healthcare to achieve their political goals.

Fear and control is all they have to offer.

They have no positive hope for the future, only empty, vapid, meaningless superiority over others. I’m so tired of being told this old story over and over and over again.

In the face of this, I try to remember that one small action can illuminate the larger good, and that within the limitations of my own life and resources, I can make a small but not insignificant difference.

To wit, an upcoming 2-day immersive workshop exploring Cranial Nerve Sequencing for deep resilience.

15% of the proceeds will go to this GoFundMe campaign to help Afghan women and girls pay for language certifications that will help them break their isolation in a world they fear has forgotten them.

The workshop will be recorded if you can’t attend both days. Because I am still in the development phase with this material, your participation and feedback would be of great value to me as well; so if you can’t afford the whole fee, please reach out!

I’m not sure why this small thread of connection was given to me, but I’m open to the mystery and joyfully accept that we are all truly connected to each other and to this beautiful planet.

Thank you for every tiny gesture of kindness and care that you are able to make in your own spheres of influence!

I hope I can encourage you in knowing that how you are and what you do matters and makes a difference.

Thanks for reading! Happy Spring.

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