As we open our hearts and minds to Spring, to all the possibility and to the emergence of all that light calls forth, by participation, we also open ourselves wider to all of creation that takes in both its breathtaking beauty and its abject suffering.
Some time ago I read the original piece written by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D entitled: ‘Letter To A Young Activist During Troubled Times’ with the subtitle, ‘Do Not Lose Heart, We were Made for These Times’. I am sharing a few strands of its content here as a reflection for our own activism as Presentation People striving to faithfully unwrap the legacy of Nano Nagle in precisely such times as we live in now. It was written as a piece of solid text, however, here, I have taken the liberty of extracting brief pieces as a rhythm of inspiration. You can read the original text at the link at the end of this page.
So here are some echoes of inspiration that may speak to your heart and guide your exploration.
Do not lose heart. We were made for these times.
We are needed, that is all we can know.
And though we meet resistance,
we more so will meet great souls who will hail us, love us and guide us,
and we will know them when they appear.
Didn’t you say you were a believer?
Didn’t you say you pledged to listen to a voice greater?
Didn’t you ask for grace?
…In the language of aviators and sailors, ours is to sail forward now …
Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once,
but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach.
Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul,
to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely.
It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom,
will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good.
What is needed for dramatic change is an accumulation of acts
– adding, adding to, adding more, continuing.
We know that it does not take “everyone on Earth” to bring justice and peace,
but only a small, determined group who will not give up
during the first, second, or hundredth gale.
…One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul.
The light of the soul throws sparks,
can send up flares, builds signal fires …
causes proper matters to catch fire.
To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these
– to be fierce and to show mercy toward others,
both — are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity.
Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit
and willing to show it.
If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do.
…There will always be times in the midst of “success right around the corner,
but as yet still unseen” when you feel discouraged.
I too have felt despair many times in my life,
but I do not keep a chair for it; I will not entertain it.
It is not allowed to eat from my plate.
The reason is this:
In my uttermost bones I know something, as do you.
It is that there can be no despair
when you remember why you came to Earth,
who you serve, and who sent you here.
The good words we say and the good deeds we do are not ours:
They are the words and deeds of the One who brought us here.
In that spirit, I hope you will write this on your wall:
When a great ship is in harbour and moored, it is safe, there can be no doubt.
But … that is not what great ships are built for.
…This comes with much love and prayer that you remember
Who you came from, and why you came to this beautiful, needful Earth.
Clarissa Pinkola Estés, (27 January 1945) is an American poet, psychoanalyst and post-trauma specialist who was raised in now nearly vanished oral and ethnic traditions. Dr. C.P. Estés’ is a lifelong activist in service of the voiceless; as a post-trauma recovery specialist and psychoanalyst of 48 years clinical practice with the persons traumatised by war, exile and torture victims; and as a journalist covering stories of human suffering and hope. She is presently in her seventies. See HERE