Society is what you and I, in our relationship, have created; it is the outward projection of all our own inward psychological states. So if you and I do not understand ourselves, merely transforming the outer, which is the projection of the inner, has no significance whatsoever; that is there can be no significant alteration or modification in society so long as I do not understand myself in relationship to you. Being confused in my relationship, I create a society which is the replica, the outward expression of what I am. J. Krishnamurti
The idea of corruption always bothered me. It seems to be at the root of the deepest human challenges such as war and poverty. I wanted to believe that if there was a way to prevent corruption in leadership, then society could build thriving and healthy countries.
So, I looked toward those who carried evidence of invincibility in their character. Humans that upon receiving increasing attention, still stayed true to an initial pursuit in bringing peace and love to humanity. What appears to be a common thread that these strong characters shared is how they embody their ideologies in their every word, behavior, and action. Unlike the majority of leaders who preach about hope, love, and a better world, yet often never lived up to these claims, there have been some leaders throughout history who have demonstrated this inspiring capacity. It’s possible.
So, how could I cultivate this within myself? How could I embody my utmost ideals of living with love?
Over time, my pursuit continued to shift from learning how to prevent tyranny in leaders to looking inward towards how to prevent corruption in myself. In order to inspire others that actionable love is beautiful, good and worth it, it must be something I can harmonize in my behaviors and words. It also included exploring how I am, in fact, already corrupt. How we all are. Realizing how I share similarities with leaders both like Gandhi and Hitler have been helpful inquires.
By understanding how, when, and where I am already corrupt, it acts as a guidepost to seeing where I can build capacity to show up with newfound strength in loving ways.
When and how do I choose reactions based in fear, anger or numbness, rather than love and presence? What contexts am I vulnerable to becoming lesser than my greatest self? Or simply, when am I acting like a smartass?
Once questions are formed, it can then be a matter of observation and listening. It’s about discovering who I am in relation to the rest of the world and it’s about learning how to uncover blind spots as to how I am not living through love.
At the source, not living through love likely all stems from fear-driven impulsivity rooted in our deep patterned coding. Although what it manifests as in the external relational space becomes what we socially construct in divisions, generating issues we point to and label such as gender, race, and privilege.
As the Trump election unfolded in digital media content, I begin to see expressions of blame and projection. People who I consider to be rather compassionate and open-minded were writing and saying derogatory things about Trump. Whether they agreed with his political approach or not, they were acting with anger and malice towards another human. My fascination at the hypocrisy sends me deeper into the quest every day: How could we learn to take accountability for aspects of the world we dislike, rather than blame adversaries?
If we embody the love we want to experience, then we can love anyone and everyone. Even those that we consider our enemies.
"It is a familiar vice. We project the sins that reside in our hearts, locating them far off, in others, in adversaries whom we then assail and persecute for our own guilt." Theodore Roszak