America is at a crossroads, a fulcrum, a tipping point, between a democratic republic—freedom through action—and autocracy—control through manipulation of fear. As Americans, we each need to decide what type of country we desire; and what each of us can do to facilitate the strategic, competitive, common sense battle with our principle global competitor, China. Some folks will pitch-in and make things happen; some folks will watch what happened; and some folks will wonder what happened. Grumblers are not rowing!
There are a bunch of strategies and stuff that need to get done: pandemic response, re-build foreign policy and relations, lead and manage conclusion of 20-year war in Afghanistan, rebuild the global intelligence network, non-political voting rights management, technology building, infrastructure maintenance and improvement, jobs creation, healthcare, childcare, immigration reform, countering systemic racism, LGBTQ rights, minimum wage, climate control, confronting home grown, white supremacy, terrorism, fair share tax reform, education re-tuning and funding, sane gun control, policing in communities, et al. As the two Japanese characters for crisis offer on the tattoo, with danger comes opportunity. The danger is continued and expanded division and autocracy; and the opportunity is work on our unhealthy personal and collective issues, participate in interactive dialogue and coalitions, and get done what is common good for all Americans. No one wants to suffer, and division and self-grown hate are destructive, depressing and absolutely no fun.
An opinion is that cultic-tribal addiction, political party sorting, including the Taliban with commander Akhundzada-is simply unresolved discomfort within the emotional body, the unhealthy self, or as offered in Integral Life Practice: A 21st Century Blueprint for Physical Health, Emotional Balance, Mental Clarity, and Spiritual Awakening (Wilber, Patten, Leonard, and Morelli, 2008, Boston, MA: Integral, page 41, 92-93),
…the shadow or dark side of the psyche, those aspects of ourselves that we’ve split off, rejected, denied, hidden from ourselves, projected onto others, or otherwise disowned…repressed unconscious…because we’ve pushed or pressed it out of our awareness, and unconscious because we are not aware of it…But the fact that we are not conscious or aware of the shadow does not mean that it has no effect: it just expresses itself through distorted and unhealthy means-or what is typically called neuroses…safety and security are sought by bonding together and identifying (fusing) with a tribe in order to persevere and protect against outsiders. Allegiance and admiration are given to the chief…emergence of a sense of self (ego) distinct from the tribe, although it often acts impulsively on behalf of its favored group.
Undoing and reintegrating this repressed and denied unconscious to improve our psychological health is process and is not easy; however, the work can free energy that has been spent shadowboxing with the self, making excuses, spinning, blaming, and telling stories. An initial step is simply a sense of openness and a commitment to face everything and fear nothing, just sit in the flames of the unresolved discomfort, and give birth to penetrating insight and skillful means. We are merely witnessing the evolution of the human condition, and with patience, persistence, education, compassion, learning, and spirituality, we can move forward together, not further divided, and closer to autocracy. Individually and collectively, we can grow mindfulness, awareness, and self-restraint, and quiet the insatiable, unhealthy ego; and the dampening of anger, egotistical pride, jealousy, envy, doubt, ignorance, attachment, and fear can begin to free passionate energy to nurture peace-of-mind and a sense of happiness and joy. Let us get this job done for all Americans, not just a select few. Casts, conflicting political messages, and deliberate, negative words that separate, attack, and divide are simply wrong. If open to the challenge, ready for the opportunity, and in need of a boost to get started: 1) In her Mindfulness Journal, Catherine Price recommends, Buy a pack of small stickers—any kind will do—and place a dozen or so around your home and office in noticeable places, such as your bathroom mirror, your computer, the back of your phone, the wall behind your kitchen sink, your alarm clock, or the cover of (your) journal. Every time you see one of these stickers, STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING, BREATHE, AND BE. 2) Locate a credible meditation instructor and learn to meditate. 3) Questions for reflection: What unlocks compassion? What manifests happiness; joy; and peace-of-mind? What is the origin of beliefs; desires; ambition; pleasures; and fear?
The personal choice: manipulation of fear or awareness elevation.