The First step to a good world is to imagine it
To get where we’re going, we need to know where we’re going. We need to know we’re on the right track. If our journey is to a good world, we need to know what that is. In 2005, wracked by the violence of our time–two declared wars abroad, escalating gang wars on our own turf–and the seemingly endless eroding of civil liberties, I began to visualize a world at peace, a world of economic, social, political and environmental justice for all Earth’s creatures.
Visualizing a good world
Here are some of the things I imagined back then and visualize with every fiber of my body, mind and soul in this time of seemingly ever-increasing hatred and violence.
- A world where people are so whole they have no need for jealousy, no need to covet their neighbor’s possessions or lifestyle, no need for power over others, or for hatred;
- A world where every child is born and raised in so strong an atmosphere of love and acceptance that she or he can’t help but grow to a strong, healthy, self-actualized adult who understands how intertwined we are, each with the other, how much we need one another, and how much more we can accomplish with cooperation and love than with bitterness, envy and anger;
- A world where we respect and nourish ourselves as much as we respect and nourish any other, even the most venerated teacher; where we respect and nourish our land, air and water as much as ourselves; and where we respect and nourish the other creatures with whom we have the privilege of sharing the planet as much as we respect each other.
Rose appears and begins to reveal her story
Then, in that vision, a figure began to emerge, and another and another. First, I saw Rose, a woman who had grown up in such a world, who had raised children of her own and who, with her life partner, Cheyenne, now looked forward to grandchildren. Rose knows only a peaceful society. The people in her world rarely see violence, and then only as a force of nature or accident.
Rose lives in gratitude each day for the bounty of her life, not from a place of being thankful for what she has in this world, despite whatever loss and despair she may experience or witness, but from a joyful heart that stops frequently to be, to feel and to celebrate the abundance of goodness available to those who live in a time and a place free of the anguish that greed and and envy wreak on us all.
At first, I felt alone in this vision, but I knew that if I could visualize a world at peace, perhaps others would join me. Perhaps one day, possibly in my lifetime, we might begin to live in that world. And lo, since then, I have discovered many people visualizing and working to build a good world, free of human-caused suffering. I am not alone. Neither are you.
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