ORIGINALLY POSTED: JANUARY 15, 2017
* This one gets heavy.*
If you manage to get through this entire post, I encourage you to spend some time in quiet reflection about your feelings and thoughts that result. I bring up difficult topics that we are accustomed to changing the channel about. We have a tendency to dismiss "it's not my problem", or "oh, here we go", or "I have problems too"... That's not what this is about. This is about - in the privacy of your own spirit - question yourself. See what you find.
He evolved before our eyes, always true to his soul's mission. He sought to align society with Divine principles of justice and equality. He sought a True Brotherhood of Man. He lived the years of 25 to 39 ministering to the souls of those who were willing to step outside of societies constructs (racism, capitalism, war, poverty) and all of the damage that they cause. He ministered to courageous souls that were tangled in the dissonance of what the world says is right and what the Soul and Divine say are right.
He did more than a speech called "I Have a Dream". What a wonderful speech, and a day of bringing people together no matter the color of their skin, but it gathered humans by common content of character.
Did you know that prior to his assassination he had become convinced of the need for another March on Washington? Did you know that he'd begun to see the soul-sickness he sought to bring to light in other manifestations? Did you know that he'd realized the power of people working together across skin color and to common purpose? He'd begun to evolve into a very different leader. The courage and eloquence that made him a successful leader of the Montgomery Bus Boycott at 25 years old, coupled with his discipline and Faith in a Power Much Greater than himself, allowed extraordinary growth in those 14 years before he was taken from us.
But he was taken from us. In Skin. Not in Soul. We can take the baton and move forward in the path that he initiated. We can do it together.
How will you help?
It may be that you choose to march. It may be that you choose to say hello to someone you would typically divert eyes from and move briskly past. It may be in recognizing your own initial judgements and asking yourself, "What if I'm wrong?"... there are many ways, big and small that we can transform the temperature of society from consumerism to compassion. It takes all of us. One day at a time.
With love, I invite you to dig deeper into yourself with some of the following materials. Ask yourself who you are against the backdrop of this work? When judgement comes up, ask yourself why? If questions come up, find a place to ask them. If you don't know what you are sure about, afraid of, or bored with, journal about it. But engage.
We are dying, biologically-psychologically-relation-ally and spiritually in our ivory silos of identity. Blaming others. We must awaken. We have a common purpose. We have common needs. We need each other.
Does this mean that King believed, and we should also believe that Government Money ALONE can eradicate poverty? I don't believe so. I do not believe that money is enough. Yet I believe that money is critical. Access is critical.
The money that is made available must work alongside principled and supported individuals to use the money. There is a need for understanding the impact of shame. We need trauma-informed education, recovery and treatment services, and knowledgeable individuals to dismantle what generational of poverty has done to people's souls. Poverty can paralyze generations of people into the first two tiers of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Self-Actualization may be generations away for people living in the mess of poverty. Healing must take place. HOPE must be introduced and maintained. There is much work to do.
It is my opinion that Dr. King understood the need to change hearts AND minds. Schools need to be invested in, values, shame and self-loathing need to be counseled. We must see each other differently, and we must see ourselves differently. We must acknowledge and nurture our capacities for good.
I know for a fact that many of the males who have left these communities and spent decades in prison have educated themselves, and have grown toward self actualization as a result of having basic needs met in the structured environment of prison. This is tragic and these men need to be back in their communities, taking on some of the values education with the younger generation. Loving and re-connecting families. These men and women need support to return and not relapse into old behavior. Watch the following video.
Brotherhood of Man is an identity within which we can do it together.
Why Government can't fix poverty
How a Great School is Breaking the Cycle of Poverty in America
There are neurological and developmental realities that exist as a result from poverty and the conditions that exist in homes because of them. This is not exclusive to poor people, but it is far more widespread in areas where there is little hope. "Difficult Children" are reachable, if we ourselves are educated enough to extend our patience with them.