It has been a very full week with an extraordinary number of events big and small, far and near to my personal experience. It is a challenge to know what country to write about: Libya, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the USA. Or what particular experience: the no fly zone; student protests; paying citizens not to complain; earthquakes, tsunamis and nuclear reactors; or budget impasse.

Or which people: the rebels (or are they freedom fighters?) in Libya; the students in Morocco; the Saudi King; the incredible community-orientated post disaster behavior of the Japanese; or US congressmen/women.

Against this backdrop are also the personal things in my week taking place here in Cordes Lakes, AZ. Finally hanging most of our art in our house; meeting a couple from Idaho, long time friends of the dear man with whom I live; working on the garden in preparation for the series of guests and events in April; a perfect short run down to feed the horses and back; the new play reading, held in a little coffee shop, that explored the ideas of faith, belief, history and personal epiphany.

The global and national events I have been following on-line including the news sources of NY Times and Al Jazeera; NPR and the BBC; Facebook and Twitter have been startling.

I am inspired by the ordinary person trying to wrest from their government a shred of independence not to mention the possibility to stay alive in Libya. The protester who finds his/herself into something far deeper than the first attempt to be heard somehow connects with me. I am fascinated by the manipulations of a King trying to prevent the kind of uprising his peers and neighbors are facing.

I am profoundly moved by the survivor from Sendai, struggling with how to live now he/she has survived and I am stunned by the machinations of the politician, caught between promises and reality in the real world of ‘government’.

Personal events have been less well covered, but it is the mandate of living my life, in truth and with courage, that most consumes me. It has to. I cannot live another person’s life, and I cannot save the world. What I can do is be present.

In being present, I am both aware of and compassionate for those out of my immediate orbit. In being present I gather the pieces that help me to know and maybe understand what is happening out there. I also find the flashes of light that directly apply to my world, in its diversity and opportunity.

From the events in Libya I am motivated to speak out when I see injustice and repression; following the Moroccan story I am reminded that the public face of a place/person may well mask a reality beneath the surface. The King throwing money at a brewing problem serves to highlight for me that money is not the source of power and life and cannot solve all long-term problems. The lawmakers arguing over what social services to cut and how to maintain the defense, corporate and financial monoliths, afford me a glimpse into the souls of the damned.

However, it is the example of the people in Japan that most speaks to me, today, now. In the face of all that is lost, all that might yet be lost, as a group this culture seems to be able to rise above personal fear and anxiety to reach out to and accept help from others.

It may be that the Buddhist and Shinto spiritual roots of the culture somehow emerges from the DNA informing the response. It may be that when we are faced with truly great potential for destruction we suddenly rise to meet it, with all that human dignity and courage, compassion and generosity holds available deep within the soul.

Ultimately what all of those coalesce into is this. In the face of perhaps unprecedented vast global upheaval and change each of us comes face to face with fear. Fear of what is vastly unpredictable, rife with possibility for all consuming war and violence, for enormous pain, of irredeemable loss and destruction of all kinds. We come face to face with our helplessness in the face of such massive change.

The demand of Spirit then, is to access our personal courage, to enable each of us to stay in the present, pay attention, willing to both see and acknowledge these events.

Along with that ‘big picture’, we also arrive at the point of personal courage. Not just to truly note events in the greater world, but to pay attention, stay in the present, and become aware of personal fears and how often something arrives to ask you to step into your well of courage in order to truly address those fears.

For me, this week has been about facing the global as well as the personal. I have come to see that some of what I don’t do is only because I am afraid of what might happen if I do do! It is not lack of inspiration, time, skill or even money that prevents me. It is the weakness of fear.

So, I pay attention to the struggles, courage and weaknesses of others out there in the global sphere. Then I take a breath and look closer to home. After all, it is my own life and path to which I must attend. That is where my power lies. That is the avenue by which to assist others.

Last night was the full Super Moon, closer to the earth than it will be again until 11/2016. I took the opportunity to sit out there under her light, mottled by the scudding clouds, and reach into the universe.

This was a time to consciously connect with change, to allow the old to leave and embrace the new. I am required to step into my personal power with integrity and to move forward.

Change is happening whether we like it or not. It is best to take a place at the helm rather than be cut to pieces and drown in the blades and eddies of the engine as it runs us over. It is fear that paralyzes us, that renders us helpless.

The intensity and pace of change all around is real. The only real issue is how each of us will respond – at a communal level like the Japanese and at a personal level, specific to each challenge and associated fear of the individual.

When you pay attention to the global evolution, connect with universal power, you will step into your personal power. In this way you can bring to your immediate world and thus to the greater, the felt experience of hope, peace and joy.

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