Busting out of my Bubble: A Reflection on Sharing Love

Love begins by taking care of the closest ones– the ones at home. ~ Mother Teresa

This morning I watched a video of a British comedian of Pakistani descent (Guz Khan) talking about the recent attack in Manchester and about terrorism in general. I was sitting on my front porch, in my robe, drinking coffee and looking at images of dead or traumatized children. I wept– from my seat of privilege, just having been swept up in irritation at drinking Maxwell House because we ran out of the good stuff. I wept. Too early in the morning for this shit! Too early in the morning?!? What calloused, pretentious, self-absorbed, white American bull shit!

Before getting on social media and pressing the play button on Khan’s video, I did pray. I started off my prayer with sentiments of gratitude and asked God, my own conception of God, to guide my thinking and my actions to make me of service to Him? Her? It? and my fellow human beings. In imagining how I might be of service today, I thought of my friends, my immediate family, and my partner– many of whom are struggling with loss and transition– but I did not, in any way, imagine being of service in a greater sense, in a global sense, in a way that was not all tied up in my intimate circle of life.

I often close my eyes to what is going on around the world. I am not much of a political activist– tough to be when I get the majority of my news briefs from FaceBook. I am only somewhat embarrassed to admit this lack of seeking out real news coverage. I can make excuses for my choice toward ignorance. The news depresses me. It is all sensationalized and biased. There is nothing I can do.  But, perhaps, I should be embarrassed. The reality is that I am completely in the dark, that I am turning a blind eye, that I am all wrapped up in my little life. If I am honest, it is because the state of the world exhausts me and I am self-centered and I am lazy.

Yet, moments like this morning– even though I had seen those images before, had heard that rhetoric– when I am absolutely struck with the reality that real tragedy is happening all around me, I vow to do better. I will watch the news. I will read. I will study up. I will stop residing in the shallow pools of my mind, burst through the bubble I live in, and I will do something to help someone somewhere somehow.

But how?

Really? But how? There are all sorts of ways how. The ways how are not kept in some locked box in which one needs the secret code. “But how?” isn’t truly the question to be asking. The more appropriate question is: “But, will I?”

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