#OccupySamsara: Solidarity in Adversity
October 18, 2011 § Leave a comment
Often when we look around at the world duality is what we see. I can see how I am separate from you, from her, from him, from them. But on a deeper level what we feel is that there is no separation. There is only us. There is only the 100% of us and we have way more in common than it appears.
In practicing sitting meditation we begin to experience first-hand what basic human sensations and emotions are like. This is what sitting feels like, the bottom half of the body connected to the ground, the top half lifting upward away from the earth. This is what irritation feels like, the left ankle and right knee registering sensations of pain or numbness. This is what the breath feels like. This is what compassion feels like. When we commit to a regular practice we are opening our hearts to the world as it is, to ourselves as we are, to all those human qualities which join us together.
With the emergence of the Occupy Wall Street movement some of us have begin to realize our interconnectedness not just internally but externally as well. It’s all too easy to turn the conversation into Us vs. Them, good vs. bad, reward and punishment. What is much more challenging is to bring people together, to create space, to include a range of different opinions and world views.
The 99 percent are not against the 1 percent. Just as the 1 percent are not against the 99 percent as evidenced by the We Stand With the 99 Percent tumblr.
The truth is: we are all in it together. Our planet, the Earth, the third rock from the Sun, is being taxed at an unsustainable level by coal mining, oil drilling, industrial livestock farming, over-fishing, pollution from our vehicles, wars, and human overpopulation. This is our only planet, our only home, and we as a human race must stand united and work together so that future generations know what the blue sky looks like, what fresh air smells like. We must do it now, wake up from our daydream of endless consumption, greed, and waste. Our time is now.
#OccupySamsara is a column dedicated to the heartfelt yearning for all sentient beings to be safe, happy, healthy, and free from suffering. Samsara is a Sanskrit word used by Buddhists to describe the cyclical nature of our own and societal suffering and dissatisfaction.
Big thanks to Olga Timofeyev for the Occupy Wall Street photographs.