A few years ago, I was part of a community of women who were experiencing an intense time of transformation. To commemorate our shared experience we ordered silver pendants with the words, “Be the Change” on them. I've been thinking about that sentiment a lot this week and especially today.
Those words are often attributed to Ghandi but apparently what he actually said was,
We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do. – Mahatma Gandhi
Of course his quote is much deeper and thought provoking than the 3 words on my necklace. It implies the hard work in change - IF WE COULD CHANGE OURSELVES. It isn’t easy to change ourselves. And yet, as we change ourselves, as we experience deep transformation, it changes others and it changes how others experience us.
Like many people today, I'm thinking about the US election results. I don't think I'm nearly as freaked out about it as some people seem to be. The choice that was made, the number of votes that were cast, are a reflection of the hearts of many people. What was it in Donald Trump's campaign that resonated with people enough for them to overlook all his flaws and vote for him?
If we want to see change, we need to Be The Change. And in order to do that we need to adopt a change mindset. We need to believe that we are capable of change. We need to understand how that process takes place. What does transformation look like? How does it come about in our lives? In our systems? In our world?
We need not wait to see what others do.