If pain is the illness, love is the cure

I love this quote because it so perfectly illustrates the relationship between the personal and greater societal issues. And because it highlights the importance of something we – me most definitely included, particularly on my darker days – sneer at: love.

So many biological, political, social, cultural, economic, and psychological factors fuel the various social issues we hear about every day – gun violence, mental illness, war, poverty, abuse, you name it. When you really think about it though, at core, each of these problems all actually come down to one simple thing: a lack of love somewhere down the line. Some call it hate, but I personally feel it’s more accurate to call it pain.

Either way, if those are the root issues, then love’s also the cure.

Viewed from this perspective, working on being a truly loving human – through your actions and healing the wounds that keep your heart closed – thus becomes a revolutionary act. That love spreads and plants seeds in others that grow just as easily as hate and pain. And they can help heal this world at a much deeper, longer-lasting root level than any clever strategy, medicine, or weapon the mind can create.

It sounds so simplistic, but I’ve been reminding myself of that a lot recently. The news – and the issues plaguing our own personal lives – can feel overwhelming and make anybody feel powerless, but remembering all of this makes me feel a sense of control. No, we can’t eradicate suicide, mass murder, war, poverty, abuse, and whatnot overnight. But there’s still a way to reduce how many happen and be a part of the cure by chipping away at the cancerous tumor that fuels them: through love, the light that can heal a dark world blinded by pain.

It’s been a while since I’ve posted, but quarantine’s making me feel like…

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I need to write.

It’s ok to feel sad and be absolutely unproductive while the world is in a state of trauma. It’s ok to spend a Saturday unable to do as much as you’d normally be able to do because it’s not just the quarantine, but the shock and the grief, that has rendered you frozen.

And because, honestly, none of it is normal. Our worlds have turned upside down, and maybe we need to embrace that, so that a new world can one day rise from the ashes and carry us through.

You don’t need to capitalize on this moment, “seize the opportunity,” as all the Instagram memes say. You can sit, and sit, and do absolutely nothing while in a daze, until the tears come and flood your heart open.

You can, in other words, just be exactly where you’re at. Because honestly, I think that might be the only way to melt through the frozen. And rise. Rise from the flames like the phoenix, brand new – all of us, and you.