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we cannot expect life to feel whole
without accepting the parts of life that ache

our pain deserves
our genuine, loving, personal witness,
the witness of a trusted other,
and the witness of a trusted community

the past, present and future
are informed
by our choices,
and perceptions of ourselves

these things can change, moment to moment
and they hold immense information
about the reality we experience
and CAN experience.

change does not have to be
from an incredible event in life,
an adrenaline rush,
or a grand proclamation

big changes are the result of small shifts
in thought
in heart
in conversation

they are in choosing to question an assumption
about life
about relationships
about truth

the biggest problems we see in our world
can only be addressed
if we have the courage to question them
with those we hold close

without the daring act of sitting in discomfort
the systems which keep us stuck in
suffering and ignorance
continue to hold power

there is no escaping the turmoil of
our selves.

to see the suffering of another
with empathy
requires us to see
the ways WE feel
and confused.

cultivating empathy
requires us to see our own harm
and without judgment.

the world i see is not split into good people
and bad people

our capacity for harming others lives partly in our willingness to harm ourselves.

every human is deserving of
dignity, respect, rest,
nourishment, love, desire,
and a vibrant life.

in what ways are we not offering ourselves the same?