To improve the world
equanimity is all
power that transforms
To improve the world with one action is quite a challenge. If one is spiritually inclined one might want to enable people to transcend their physical limitations. If one were oriented toward health, one would provide everyone with a healthy life style. If one were oriented toward business and money, one would have the power to provide everyone on earth with one million dollars.
But if I had one power to improve the world, it would be the power to remove discriminating judgment from human beings, to empower people to respond to every thing and every one with equanimity. Defined in the Encarta World English Dictionary as “evenness of temper, even under stress,” equanimity enables people to think before responding. Equanimity means putting a hold on emotional, knee jerk reactions and calling upon one’s higher abilities to interact with discernment, analysis, and patience.
If we look at most problems that exist in the world from the beginning of recorded history, they can be related to the failure of humans to practice equanimity. Men kill each other fearing a lack of resources, rather than seeing the vastness of this world and the capacity for people to cooperate rather than to combat. Equanimity requires humans to utilize our superior mental functions, rather than to descend to our elemental, primitive, animal impulses. And yes, equanimity requires a mindset that realizes life is short, in the end all die, so why not make this life a pleasant experience.
I love how you have taken a seemingly complex, unsurmountable problem of how to improve the world and boiled it down to a bite-sized idea that people can easily wrap their heads around. I agree that equanimity is a good place to start and finish in order to begin to see our neighbors as a cooperative part of our lives rather than our competition. You’d make a good political pundit, Skywalker. 🙂
Thanks, Jeff – no I could never be a pundit, that’s my husband’s domain. I don’t have the patience to argue with people. This essay actually was part of an application for an on-line free lance writing gig.
This is such a lovely way to present crucial insights, Skywalker Storyteller. Your poetry and discussion reminds me of one of the Ojibwe tenets for the path of life (the Midewewin Code): “Be moderate in all things; watch, listen and consider; your deeds will be prudent.” As Jeff points out, poetry and art convey this message in a much clearer and more powerful way.
Thanks, Carol. Today is the Tibetan New Year and I thought this would be appropriate. See my response to Jeff to get the origins of the essay.
Very well put. Personally, given the current state of Australian politics, I’d go for compassion.
I’m loving the direction your blog and haiku are moving in at present. 🙂
Suzanne, I’ve found including a haiku in a blog, whatever the topic, gets more readers and likes. Plus, it challenges me to get to a point concisely. See above for genesis of idea and Tashi Delek.
All I can say is “Synchronicity”. The universe works in truly mysterious ways, changing things revealing things and inspiring words, sounds and love to converge on the Truth. Well played. JBC 😎
I couldn’t agree more, Sky. We can’t always choose our health or wealth, but it is within all of to choose understanding and acceptance and patience.