Remember back at the beginning of the shut down, when people were still (mostly) rational and sane? Remember when the grocery store shelves went bare due to panic hoarding? Remember how people started freaking out and America descended into unimaginable darkness? I do.
I remember the first people to ask if we had a gun in the house and enough ammunition “in case this gets weird”. Just asking that question was f*cking weird, and it seemed so crazy to me at the time. Ah, but March was a long time ago. Somehow, people have become even more psychotic than that.
Why? Why did we go from “there is a new virus we should be careful of”, to “the entire world is ending, run for your lives,” overnight?
I have a theory: We have been preparing for the end of the world. for years, by reading dystopian books, watching post-apocalyptic movies and obsessing over doomsday preppers and other end of the world pop culture.
We’ve seen the Handmaid’s Tale, the Walking Dead and the Hunger Games. We know how this is going to go down, because our imaginations have been primed with these narratives for decades. We know that empty grocery store shelves mean people will come steal your supplies. We know that viruses spread and kill people, and no one is safe. We know that sometimes a shutdown means being separated from our family, and finding a way back to safety, whatever the consequences.
We’ve lived this life before, a hundred ways, in a hundred different end of times stories. That’s why our brains went immediately to catastrophe mode.
Many of the great thinkers of the world agree that there are certain universal laws that are always at work — whether we believe in them or not doesn’t seem to matter — they are always shifting things in the background of our lives.
The law of attention says energy goes where attention flows. This means we can amplify something and bring more of it into our experience by focusing on it. Don’t believe me? Start shopping for a certain kind of car. As you read the reviews online, compare its bells and whistles to other vehicles on the market and plan for a test drive it is likely that you will encounter more and more of that particular kind of car on the road.
Were those Cadillacs on the road before you started shopping for one? Probably. It’s possible you drove by a bunch of them before and didn’t even notice them. It’s also possible that your attention to that specific vehicle is attracting more of those vehicles into your path each day.
The law of attraction works in a similar way. What we think about, we bring about. Like attracts like. So, if you want to create something in your life, you can focus on making yourself “like” the thing you want to emulate. Maybe that Caddy is out of your price range today, but you schedule a test drive anyway so you can let the universe know you’re ready to level up.
This is why we hear people talk about positive thinking so much. If we’re working with the laws of attention and attraction, we know that focusing our thoughts on what we want, instead of what we don’t want, will bring more of that thing into our lives. Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. If we’re focused on our problems we’re going to call more problems into our lives.
This year is all the proof I need that dystopian fiction has changed us as a society. We’re fascinated with the end of times stories — zombies and tyrannical leaders and starvation scenarios, oh my!
Are post-apocalyptic stories causing all the terrible things happening this year? Maybe.
Are they making it really easy for people to jump to the worst possible conclusions? Absolutely.
If our collective imagination is powerful enough to create a year like this one — from the pandemic and social unrest to the fires up and down the West coast, severe storms in the Midwest and hurricanes in the Gulf , job losses and increasing animosity between our political parties — it’s also powerful enough to fix some of the sh*t that is broken around here.
What if for just a little while, we turn our attention to things we want more of?
What if we find a way to place our energy and attention on all the happy stuff that is still somehow happening amidst the chaos that is 2020?
What if we stop playing out the worst case scenarios and hero’s journeys that none of us actually want to be part of, and start focusing on healing as a nation?
Can we focus on peace and unity?
Can we search for some common ground and work together?
Can we imagine America without racism, misogyny, greed and corruption?
Can we imagine a functional government that actually cares about its citizens? Elections without fraud? Healthcare for everyone?
Can we imagine an America where everyone is housed, and their families have enough to eat?
What if we put our collective heads together and created a peaceful resolution to the problems we are facing today?
What if we stop talking about the Trump circus and focus on what life might be like when we get him out of office?
Can we focus all of our energy on Biden, and the good things we expect him to do? Please?
I’m not suggesting that dystopian writers hang up their pens permanently. I’m merely saying that the world might need for them to take a hiatus, indefinitely, while we fix some sh*t around here.
Another universal law is the law of intention. Our thoughts and words are powerful. Our intentions carry the vibration of our desires into the field of creation, where they manifest into our physical realities.
My intention is love, peace, good health, much wealth and prosperity for everyone. Will you join me in raising this vibration for our collective good? Can we tell the stories of healing, recovering from trauma, finding dream jobs we didn’t know we wanted, sending kids to school without fear of Covid or gun violence and learning how to talk to people who are nothing like we are?
The revolution we need begins in the mind. It begins with patience, education and admitting that we might only have one little piece of a great big story. To fix America, we must all realize that we’re in this together — black, white, LGBTQ+, all genders, Republicans, Democrats, all ages, all religions — if we burn down our house it hurts everyone. And, maybe we should burn it down, as a ritual fire to metaphorically clear our karma, and begin again.
Let’s rebuild on love.
Let’s rebuild on the idea that everyone is important and everyone has basic needs that our government should help meet — housing, food, education and health care for starters.
Let’s accept that the world would be a better place if more people had access to legal marijuana. Have you ever seen an angry pot head? Me neither — and I’m certain pot shops could make enough tax revenue to wipe out all federal student debt.
Let’s rebuild on equality and respect for human life so our children can live in a society that values people over profits.
Let’s keep religion — and the archaic belief system that comes with it — out of our legislation.
Let’s make America kind again, and decent, honest and respectable.
Let’s imagine our country the way we would want to pass it down to our great-grandchildren. A safe place brimming with opportunity and hope for all.