17 November 2012


There is so much more
brett dennen

11 November 2012

Where the world is.

I struggle sometimes, finding myself stuck in the space between the glorious, miraculous, heart-breakingly beautiful, incomprehensibly wonderful fullness of the world and the horrendous, tragic, painful, insensibly cruel side of the same. There is so much more than meets the eye. Everything seems so confused and clouded and complicated. And yet, starkly simple. At the core.

Most of the time, of course, I am just not thinking. I am just living. Trying to make my way through each day with a shred of dignity and, if I'm really lucky, something to feel good about. Something accomplished. I spend most of my time oblivious and drifting. Not reflecting and connecting the various threads of life and thought and emotion that pass through any given day.

But I can't ignore it all for long. Neither the overwhelming goodness and beauty I receive constantly from friends and strangers and family and the World and the Divine. That astonishing generosity and love that exists all around. In the giant bursts or in tiny, hidden corners. Nor the terrible, miserable realities that are constant and undeniable and truly unthinkable, unimaginable and all too real near and far and everywhere all at once. And I find I am not always prepared to hold it all within me. I vacillate from one extreme to the other. Crying tears of joy. Calling out curses to the anguish. Laughing. Laughing because there is nothing more to do--because it is ridiculous and tremendous and incoherent.

Mostly, my heart doesn't know exactly where to land. It is tugged and torn in two. Divided between the good and bad. The beautiful and the hideous. The hopeful and the hopeless.

 Hope. Or. Hopeless.

There I hang. Paralyzed. Wanting to reach for the joyous and the great. To fall firmly on the beautiful land of love, prettiness, kindness, generosity. Yet, I cannot turn my back on the hateful and the mean and the indifferent. Needing to look them square in the face and fight with all my heart. Yet I don't quite.

Instead I float. In the middle. Neither loving nor hating the world. NO! Both loving and hating the world. Despising and loving mankind more than I even know how. Discovering great leaps into a better world. Seeing the degradation and destruction we have caused. Unsure how to tie them together. How can they both exist, side by side? Contradicting and cancelling each other out. Why must there be a tragedy alongside every miracle? Is it necessary to accompany every gain with an equal and opposite loss? Somewhere. For someone. Are we just running in place... for every leap forward another stagger back? Is this inevitable? Can it ever end? Do we want it to? Enough? But really. really. ENOUGH!

That's where I always end up.

I believe there is hope. So, SO much hope.
If we want it. Really, really want it.
Enough to accept everything that comes with it.
Even the inconvenience. The sacrifice.
Because there has to be sacrifice.

Yes, I believe there is hope.
And we can choose it.
Or not.

I guess that's why it's hope.
There is no guarantee.
There is no promise.
Instead, endless and never-ending

06 November 2012

A confession of joy

Remember when I said I wasn't as excited about the election this year??

I was kind of wrong!!! I guess I didn't know how I would actually feel until.....

OBAMA WON!!!!!! 

And I could not be more excited. Hopeful. Happy!

I hope that in the next four years we will see some important changes in our country. And I hope, as I said before, that we can all come together and work peacefully to make our country a better place for all of us!


05 November 2012


I keep thinking back to 4 years ago. The first time I voted. When I read everything everywhere and after careful thought and preparation, I felt excited and certain about who I should vote for. I was so thrilled to take part in this democratic election ritual.

And I remember when President Obama won. I remember I was in the computer lab in the library typing up some paper, when suddenly there was a shout from somewhere in the foyer. Someone rejoicing. And then the word spread like fire throughout the library and whispers exploded in joy or disappointment. I remember my pride: in my country, my fellow citizens, in people in general. For making what was, in my opinion, the best decision. I remember recognizing that this was a historic moment in our country's history. And it proved me wrong in some of my doubts about the goodness and pureness of people's intentions and views.

In short, I was ecstatic. Full of hope and optimism for the future.

So, things haven't gone quite as planned. I'm not as intense about my feelings in the election this year. I still support President Obama. But maybe with a little less enthusiasm.

Not because I actually think he has been a terrible President like some people. Or because I am less certain about which candidate I support. I am just as sure who I want to win. And I think that Obama has done some good, though certainly he has not been perfect.

Still, I am not so enthused. I am excited to vote. I am grateful for this privilege to express my voice about who will lead my country. I am not unaware of how blessed we are to have the right to participate in the election of our leaders and to express our hopes, fears, disappointments and discontents. It's a great thing.

Only, the difference this time is that I am less hopeful about our attitude as citizens. And the election season hatefulness has not encouraged me much.

I remember how much President Bush was raked over the coals during his Presidency. I guess I thought that was just because people were so completely unhappy with him. I didn't expect the same negativity to continue almost without missing a beat into a new presidency.

I don't pretend that there are not reasons to complain and find fault. In fact, that's my very point. There always will be. There always have been. Unfortunately, if that is where we continue to focus, I truly believe that we will never be satisfied. We will never progress. There will never be real, meaningful change in our nation.

So, I will vote. And I will hope and pray for (what I consider) a favorable outcome in the elections.

But what I want, more than anything, is peacefulness. Helpfulness. No matter what happens, I hope I can do my best to be an asset to my country. I hope my voice can spread hope and love and joy. I hope that even if I disagree with some ideas, that I will find solutions. I hope that we as a nation can gripe a little less and change a little more.

As my mom always taught me, "Be a problem solver!"

Her advice never goes out of style.

Happy voting! Be safe out there!

Oh, and also this: