For one day I imbued myself with the political scene here in Quebec. I opined all over everyone and Facebook. I expressed, cajoled and even began arguments with those who would speak contrarily. I was revisiting my past to see how my “old skin” felt and found that it was a very uncomfortable fit. Memories of decades of my life spent in this sort of mentality, of one person being right, and another being wrong, always trying to prove your “rightness” and then trying to convince others to have your opinions; I had forgotten how exhausting it all was.
Everyone changes. But, I didn’t even recognize the person that was me yesterday. That was some other older version of me.
In university, I was only 16 when I was voted into University Senate. Not a small feat for a kid on a campus with 32 thousand students. We argued and bantered day and night. It was the practice field for upcoming MNA and MP’s of the Canadian political scene and for a long time I was pretty sure my life was going in that direction. I was president of stuff and wanted the authority and the ego boost of having people believe that I would represent them. I even had dinner with Henry Kissinger once and argued with him too about bombing the food line in Cambodia. I debated all over the country even in parts of the USA. I discovered that in a political debate, ultimately you are trying to get the person with whom you have a contention to lay down their sword at your feet and agree with your view. However, in all of my years and with all of my lofty brains and ideals I have yet to change someone’s mind about something they believe. I found, especially after having had so many years now where I really chose not to have too many opinions about anything (the nice thing about Buddhism:) that having opinions is very exhausting and a terrible waste of energy. Rarely is there a black and white easy answer between who is right and who is wrong. All of your opinions are based on personal experience. Choice and consequence. We understand everything only relative to our personal experience, and since we are the only ones who have lived our particular life it is then obvious that no one can EVER see things the same as you. Convincing anyone of anything is both futile and a waste of time.
During the day I was forcing myself. To tell you the truth, I found that I really had no interest in convincing anyone of anything. But there is a certain “acceptable hysteria” in the manner in which politicians in Quebec communicate and I fell into step like I hadn’t missed a day. Then I discovered that I don’t feel the need to have what I believe validated by anyone because I only believe what resonates as truth in my heart. This is a great freedom and I wouldn’t have known it about myself had I not had this experience. Everyone is running on fear- and I feel no fear because I am well aware of a bigger picture that is in play here and that goes way beyond our human banter.
Nonetheless, it was a really interesting day delving back into the direction my life was supposed to take according to my family and upbringing. At the end of it, I discovered more deeply who I am. The experience was fruitful…and tiring.
After the election there was violence. I felt how the energy of everyone had gotten so out of hand…and someone died. This is incredibly sad. We saw this kind of militant ideology back in 1976 and it is not something we need to revisit. This is all VERY OLD THINKING. We know better now. I believe there is a spiritual shift in the world, and more and more people are coming to understand that YOU are not your religion, YOU are not your country, YOU are not your eduction or the money you make. YOU are MUCH MUCH more than that.
There are so many problems and issues in the world, we need to stay focused and not let these people who are stuck with their personal identities all tied up in their EXTERIOR life impinge upon our INTERIOR growth and development. So I will put my feet back on the ground, let my political fervour go back to sleep…and welcome peace and quiet back into my heart – breathing a sigh of relief for the gratitude I feel for having such a beautiful life.