>How Sandy could save us

We all come together in a disaster – the nightmare we are living strips us of our defenses and forces us to face our shared humanity. In speaking that common language of humanity, we show how much we need each other – this is vulnerability, which we normally spend most of our time trying to hide.

I haven’t heard about any hurricane rescuers asking refugees about their religious views before offering a spot in their kayak, nor have I heard of any refugees confirming their rescuers’ sexual orientation before accepting that ride down their flooded street. Governor Christie didn’t see Red or Blue when he reached for President Obama, and I don’t think our president saw a party line when he reached back in support.

These disastrous times provide a unique opportunity for us to see each other stripped of our defenses, to see each other as we really are; vulnerable, afraid, and needing each other. We get glimpses of this when a loved one gets sick, or passes away – our grief disarms us and we reach out, where just yesterday we would have shut down and told everyone we were fine. I believe that it’s this shared language of vulnerability that strengthens our relationships with each other, if we’re willing to risk it.

In a few short weeks, most of the country will likely be back to business as usual, while our Northeast neighbors try to piece their lives back together.  It seems more important now than ever, even on a global level, to focus on what really matters – showing compassion for each other, and the Earth who houses us. Learning not only to accept, but celebrate our differences, Every. Single. Day. No crisis needed.

For those directly affected by Hurricane Sandy, I wish you a speedy recovery from the damage. Hopefully we will all hold on to the lessons we’ve learned, from sharing ourselves empathically with each other, in the hour of need. Maybe by saving each other, we also save ourselves.



, ,




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *