by Sheila Fox
I identified with Moji Agha, the Iranian-American poet/writer and peace, human rights and Earth activist that PJALS sponsored recently. Thank you PJALS!
It got me going…..wheels turning….. Moji, a cultural psychologist described himself as having a unique psycho-culturally informed perspective, a Sufi orientation and a “wisely humble” approach to “the nonviolent global struggle against injustice, war and suicidal destruction of human civilization and the planet we share. ” He used language like the “integrated good” “civil spirituality” and “understanding the oneness of all beings.”
This approach speaks to me. It is a somewhat unique perspective and fosters a conversation I feel is crucial to nonviolent resistance, the redefinition of power.
There’s a Yiddish saying, “Abi gezunt ken men gliklekh zayn. “ ….if you have your health then you can be happy. Happiness spurs energy, energy spurs action. Health is POWER!
As a practitioner and advocate for holistic health and as a singer/musician, I too bring a somewhat unique mind and spirit to peace, justice and environmental work.
I want peace and justice activists to be strong and healthy! The earth needs you to be on this planet as long as you can! I want to challenge you to examine your health habits and develop a new relationship to your power! Health Power!
There are many levels to health; health of the body, of the mind, and of the spirit. When we look at individual or collective health from the ancient wisdom gathered by Traditional Chinese Medicine, East Indian Aryuvedics and Native American or other indigenous healing traditions, one finds the key component to ill health is separation, from self, community, planet….
This dualistic mental model dominates our world today. In believing that one person is separate from another and that we are separate from nature, we disconnect from our True Nature, where our real power lives. Our bodies are dependent upon and part of the living breathing system of earth, the resources of water and air. Every cell of our bodies; we are mineral, water, air, space, heat or fire, light….
The Personal is soooooo Political!” “Developed” nations continue to participate in toxic, destructive ways, from the industrial corporate complex to our communities and right into our homes. We all participate in it. When you shop at Safeway or Albertsons, Home Depot or Costco and buy food or products that contain ingredients that you can’t pronounce or don’t know what they are, you are most likely buying something not healthy for yourself or the planet and you are handing over your money and your power to your oppressor and destroyer. Our power lies in figuring out how to not participate in it. It takes diligence, discipline, patience, self examination, understanding and compassion to create our way out. These qualities remind me of the Palestinians and Israeli peace activists I met on my trip there! Their hope and commitment inspires me.
If you think you can’t afford to shop at the alternatives to these box stores or don’t have time to hang up the laundry instead of using the dryer, think again. You can’t afford not to! Buy in bulk, bring your own container, grow your garden (without chemicals) or buy from the Farmers Market. Use baking soda and vinegar for your cleaning products, the list of alternatives is vast and is out there.
The key to real health and power is when we align and connect with ourselves and hence our planet. Do no harm to any living thing, be it plant, mineral, animal.
Your brain and nervous system will function a lot better if your body, mind and spirit are listened to equally. This is how we harness real power. Our focus becomes sharp, creativity flows, energy sparks, our hearts are filled and we are more resilient to whatever comes our way. Envision and revision! Redefine and find your power! We might just be able to create the peace and justice and harmony we all seek.