I started meditating* again** earlier this year.

For me, one of the ways I find it easiest (and actually doable) to make a habit change, is to find a way to incorporate it into my system. I found an app (pranayama, link is to the company that developed it, sagaara) and I started using it right before bed. That way, I can also calm my mind down before bedtime (I'm prone to insomnia).

So, I found my system and now I'm using it. And I'm loving it. Ten minutes? Is easy to find before bed, since it would take me that long (longer) to fall asleep anyway. And this actually helps. It's worth it.

But that's not what I wanted to write about. You surely know the benefits of meditating. No, what I wanted to write about was what flashed into my mind last night after my meditation was over.

It was a return to a conversation I'd had with my husband earlier in the day. Revolution. We were discussing the political situation in Wisconsin (I stand with the Democratic senators, in case you're wondering, which I'm sure you weren't).

But my post-meditating mind went somewhere else. Revolution. Conscious revolution. Meeting somewhere in the middle, so we could all be happy. Is that possible? I had some crazy ideas last night (ending marriage completely, challenging anti-abortion people to start funding inter-utero transfers, so that women who don't want to be pregnant could give the fetus to infertile couples, somehow). I'm not sure, in the light of day, those are possible, but they take the focus away from the intellectual divides and work on finding solutions. (My solution to those who decry taxes is simple, too: you can stop paying taxes if you stop using every single service taxes pay for. Including, but not limited to roads. But, that's less of a solution and more of a "stop whining you idiots" idea. Sigh.)

The divides are so great. Liberals and Conservatives demonize each other (and to be quite blunt, I do it myself, all the time. I am so scared of the world envisioned by Sarah Palin and her cohorts).

But, I absolutely know, without a doubt, that we will not evolve until we are able to actually find solutions that everyone can agree to. Until then, it is politics as usual (which means we are quickly dashing towards environmental/ economic/ world war III doom).

Ugh. I'm one voice. What can I do? I've been finding myself growing increasingly cynical and hopeless as I read more and more environmental reports and I don't like it.

So, let's open it up. Let's talk about what positive steps we can take... let's think about it, and meditate on it and watch our words as we demonize the idiots disagree with people on facebook.

I don't want to be part of the problem anymore. I want to be part of the solution. I'm looking for ways, will you help me?

Beyond politics*** there is a door. Will you meet me there?

* Technically, pranayama is a yogic breathing exercise, but I'm considering it meditation, since I am practicing mindfulness of the breath, using the simplest of the app's patterns (which was, I think free?). I'd looked at some guided meditation apps, too (and thought about just using a timer, which would be the easiest solution) but I like attending to my breath and drawing out the exhale. It works for me.

** I was raised by a mom who meditated regularly, and was actively encouraged to meditate from a fairly young age. My meditation practice as an adult has changed significantly since my youth, I am now more of a zen (just sit, mindfulness to the breath) type of practitioner. It's been awhile since I had a regular meditation practice as an adult.

*** With apologies to Rumi. 

PS: does anyone know how to make these actual numerical footnote? I cannot figure out how to do the raised numbers anymore.

PSS: The last two photos are of our old house... Azalea season should be starting soon and I will miss those gorgeous bushes, which I think got mostly torn down by the new owner.