Recently I was abhorred by a statement made on ABC television where a group of high-powered women in an overseas country were invited to have a lively debate on whether the hand that rocked the cradle could also rock the board room at the same time.
What shocked me was one when one of the women on the panel referred to how she would support her daughter to do what she chose, but would not be happy to see her end up with a mechanic with tattoos (I am not directly quoting here, but it was very close to this statement).
She was for the debate, saying that it was not possible to do both. Despite the obvious invitation to stay with the juicy topic of the debate, I am on another mission here.
It amazes me that someone can value a beautiful BMW car, but have no real personal respect for the person who services it and keeps it safe on the road; or that they can eat fresh, plum prawns and not give a thought at any time in their lives where the prawns may have come from, how they ended up on their table, or even if they are fished sustainably?
Walking strongly in the world no matter what is not all about getting what you want, it is about valuing who you are, what you choose to do, and how you do it, and also valuing those who serve you and the lifestyle you value.
We need mechanics and trades people in the world as much as we need CEO’s and politicians. In fact, we need both if we are to continue to create a world worthy of our children.
It is a ‘no brainer’ that we need to take care of the earth or there will be nothing on or of our beloved planet to value.
On the same day I watched the debate on television, I listened to an interesting show on Radio National on The Philosopher’s Zone where the host was interviewing Dominique Hyde, author of “From Logic to Forest” and a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Queensland.
Among other things, they discussed the philosophy of treating animals and plant life as subjects rather than objects; to consider the value of their presence on the planet as much as the human presence.
It makes sense that if we consider animals and plant life as having as much right to be here on this planet as we do, that would we reconsider our relationship with them.
Walking strongly in the world can mean so many things, but for me it means walking with clear and strong values, with self-respect and respect all creatures and forms of nature, for our children, and for the planet.
Indeed respect for all forms, animate and inanimate, for everything has a living spirit or an energy that gives it an identity, a purpose.
I can hear the objections – where do hold back our respect? What about offenders and criminals? What about the natural disasters that wipe out whole villagers?
Of course this is not ‘ok’ or easy to understand, but who is to know whether or not ‘they’ are part of the whole of Divine Creation? At times, it takes darkness in order for there to be light. It may take loss to create gratitude for what remains.
At times we are pushed to show our best and truest self in order to stand up for what we believe in, and to find value in what we have rather than what we don’t.
The way you walk is what this is about – not the way others walk. If others choose to walk in a different way to you, to apparently have less respect for their world, there is little you can do about it.
Walking strongly no matter what takes courage and inner strength, it takes trust and faith in yourself, trust in your Creator and Soul’s Way, and trust and faith in the journey of those around you.
Walking strongly also takes conscious awareness, good boundaries, and personal rules.
If the women who dropped the ‘mechanic with tattoos’ whoopsy doozie on international TV had rules in her head and heart about not judging others or seeing any other being as being less than her, she would never have dropped such a clangor.
At least by my values it was a ‘clangor’ and I have no doubt I am not the only one who noticed! However, perhaps her values may now change and her mind might expand with some critical feedback on her comment.
Public shame can be a terrible thing to experience, but it sure has a way of bringing awareness to careless thoughts, words and actions.
It is ironic that I stand for tolerance of difference and I am having a reaction to what this women said don’t you think?
This is what it is all about, about being honest, taking off the blinkers about your own vulnerability and humanness, and being brave enough to get it ‘wrong’ so others can get it ‘right’.
I really value this woman saying what she said because it has fueled my passion once again for taking a stand that says: “I will always attempt to look for the good in, value, and respect difference”.
Even when that difference pushes my buttons – in fact – especially when it does. I may not always do it well.
I may not always understand how others do what they do, but I continue to do my best to be inclusive, and aware that there is Their Personal World and the Big Picture to consider, and I often have no idea about either.
So I ask you – what is your stand? What and who do your walk strongly for in the world – no matter what? What difference are you here to make? And, by the way, who are you really under the masks you wear to survive? What brings joy to your heart?
If it is digging worms out of gardens and putting them amongst vegetables to save on artificial fertilizer that will eventually run into our waterways, I honour and thank you.
If it is painting stripes on aeroplanes all day long, I bow to your tolerance, patience and persistence. If it is changing worn out tyres and replacing them with new ones to keep someone safe on the road, I say thank you.
If it is tattooing a symbol on someone’s forehead so they can walk more strongly in the world because they simply don’t give a damn about what anyone else thinks, I say bless your talent and your respect for your client, and your own way.
If your mission in life right now is to work out how you can pack the dishwasher really well so you save water that can be used to wash cloth nappies to save the planet – well, I am speechless.
Thank you a million times! And if it is bullying someone so they will stand up for their own rights and be brave enough to say “No” at some crucial point in their lives – then I will do my best to attempt to understand you, to learn from you, and be honest with myself when I can do no more than that.
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I aspire to inspire those who choose to journey with me to live consciously and confidently, to step into their true nature, and to step up and out to meet their dreams, keeping an open, resilient heart, in love and gratitude, always, and all ways. I stand for equality and respect between all living beings and creatures.
Heather is B.Soc.Sci. (Couns.), Mb.QCA, PACFA. Trainer in Corporate Shamanism and Shamanic Practice Writer Consultant Speaker Counsellor & Healing Practitioner.
Spirited Living, Loving & Leading with Shamanic Path & Practice Guided by ŒThe 8 Way¹s for Living Consciously and Confidently.