that is part of the resacralization of the material world.”
This is a direct quote from Charles Eisenstein’s 2013 essay called “The Cynic and the Boatbuilder.” And that is one of the things that I hope I am doing by making artifacts.
I was recently jabbed on Facebook by a friend. He said that all my posts were promoting myself and I interpreted it to be hurtful and snarky. Then I realized that while I was certainly guilty of promotion, he was not reading my blog so did not understand what I am promoting! His assumptions made me think about the harm we do when we whiz through our social media and do not take the time to connect more deeply, let alone to come out of our own snarkiness into compassion. This made me look deeply into my friendship with this person and my choices. I also consider the idea that I was the easy target for what was probably a lot of frustration in his life. Something is wrong and what I expect I should be doing is reaching out to him to find out why he felt the need to snark me rather than approach me in a more thoughtful manner. It made me sad to think that he may be suffering. It made me more sad to think that he may be suffering but blind to his suffering.
Maybe it is about our lack of considering that everything is sacred. Even his words are sacred. If I read between the lines I know I will hear something besides his snarky comment. Why was he feeling a need to judge me and instead of approaching me personally to tell me in this manner that would seem to illicit an equalling appalling response? Why was he picking a fight with me over my actions? What is going wrong in his own life that he felt the need to criticize me? I feel that as we walk between the worlds of love and fear we are all doing the best we can. But most of the time we are not conscious. One of the things that we are not conscious of is our cultural programming that separates us from one another. One of the programs creates our need to feel better than someone else. Our country is supposed to be all about equality but what we create is a rift between each other because while I must be better than you, we are really not good enough. We are not pretty enough, smart enough, rich enough, etc etc etc. well, enough of enough! We all have enough. Way more than we need but we still do not have each other. It is an old story. So why are we still not aware of the harm of this old story? How is it serving us?
Charles speaks to creating a new story.
What Charles is speaking of is participation in making the world the more beautiful place our hearts know is possible. Now, there are a lot of ducks to get in a row out there. I am promoting a gift economy but let’s face it, I am still living in a monied world. I have bills to pay simply because I exist. So when I make something I ask that the person interested in my product to offer what they want to pay. This is not the ideal way of gifting but I am making it up as I go along. One of the problems that I run into is the consumer mentality that says if it doesn’t have a pricetag then it doesn’t have value. I recognize that every single one of us has a particular relationship to money and how we spend it depends largely on what we were raised to value. I was raised in a family of artisans and craftsmen. My father worked with wood. My mother and sister lead the way in fiber. We knew the value of a handmade object before the era of cheaply mades. Especially now, knowing how damaging the textile and fashion industries are to the environment must we learn to consume differently. I am still in the process with shifting the way I consume but I am making a conscious effort. To fight the tide of commercialism and the next big thing mentality takes nothing short of a commitment to saving our planet. We have to save ourselves first. We have to somehow gain maturity.
One thing I want to give before I end this blog is forgiveness. I am not perfect and neither are you and neither is my friend. We are all carrying a great burden but it is time to get out of our way, unload the old stories and perhaps gather our forces and forgive. Untye the knot and move beyond your own small worldview into a new story of thriving. I apologize for continuing the story of betrayal and allowing my ego to get bruised by his comments. I have not opened a dialog with him because I do not want to make him wrong, feel bad or judged, or even point out to him that he was snarky. I want him to come into his own awareness in his own time. I want to accept him as he is. But I also do not want to enable him to judge anything that he has not taken the time to really look into. Everyone of us carries a great burden. May we all be gentle with each other.