Why Am I Telling You This?
August 10th, 2019
Those who know don’t say, and those who say don’t know
Tao Te Ching
We are in the midst of global civilization in full-scale collapse. This is a minor issue compared to the mass extinction that is well underway. Some say we have already pushed climate change into an irreversible spiral. In short, we are living in a nightmare.
A nightmare usually includes at least one “bad guy,” monster, or other challenging situation. In Nonviolent Communication (NVC), a compassionate approach to life, there are no monsters; there are no bad guys. There are only “enemy images.”
If we think there is anything wrong with the world, aren’t we making it into an enemy? In NVC, no one ever does anything wrong. Doesn’t the same go for God?
In my view, we are not practicing NVC unless we believe that everything is OK: there is no hurry; the world is perfect the way it is. How many of us believe that?
Let me be clear: I am not saying we shouldn’t care about the world. I am not saying the current system is meeting everyone’s needs. Obviously not. What I am saying is that if we really want to help the world, and not just complain about it, we need to change our thinking. I believe NVC consciousness is that change.
The goal of NVC is to “make life more wonderful,” not to save or fix anything. NVC has a place for what it calls “protective use of force,” but not if it’s motivated by enemy images. The difference, as I see it, is whether we are in fight-or-flight or in calm-alert. Another way to put it is, are we asleep or awake?
I can only have a nightmare if I don’t know I am dreaming. This why Eckhart Tolle says that “to awaken within the dream is our purpose now.” He says awakening is more important than any action. Why? Perhaps because, as the Hawaiian practice of Ho’oponopono puts it, we are each 100% responsible for the entire world. There is no “outside world” to change; only ourselves.
NVC says the solution to any problem is always compassion: that is, empathy. As I see it, it’s only a lack of empathy, a lack of awareness of the feelings and needs behind our actions, that makes a situation into a “problem” to begin with.
Is empathy, or love, really all we need? If this world is only a dream, then the only way to “save it” is to know it doesn’t need saving.
But if all this is true, if the world is my sole responsibility because I’m the one dreaming it, then why am I bothering to tell you about it? I think of self-help gurus that say, “I got rich doing _____ and you can too.” But if they are so rich, why are they charging for the info?
Is anyone who tries to teach or even do anything simply misguided? I don’t know the answer. If you do, please enlighten me.