Desmond Tutu once said, “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor”. Poignant a statement as it is, when it comes to Sri Lanka and its wounds, an expat is conflicted. You see, in the face of war, my family (like many) chose to leave, and yet others who we know and love still remain. And often times when the country is confronted with its traumas, even though we feel it, we aren’t physically there, so having an opinion on it seems fickle. So a lot of us remain silent, but we’re never neutral.
No matter where you live, there is a war outside your door. But there is an even bigger war inside of you. A war fuelled by love and fear. It causes a lot of tension. Our beautiful egos step in, take on the load, and build shields against the world to protect our inner-children. The greater the trauma outside, the thicker the conflict within and the more taut one becomes.
300 human beings have died in my motherland. I’m halfway across the world and I’m sad and scared but I’m hopeful. My family and friends appear to be safe thus far, but the teardrop of the Indian Ocean is once again tearing up in the Indian Ocean. That war outside is brewing one inside me and I can feel the tension growing. So when I say what I say please know that I don’t preach from a place of self-righteousness but one of self-practice. When tension builds in our body, we express it tensely. Our aggression, our outbursts, our hate-filled actions are all a by-product of harbouring pain. With meditation, and more importantly with the active attention that we give our breath, we can unwind that tension and free ourselves from that place of discomfort. The less tension we have, the greater the peace within, and the more peace we bring.
I will heed Desmond Tutu’s advice and I will do something. But Ironically I invite you to do nothing, to be neutral. This Sunday the 28th of April @ 3pm I’m running a guided meditation and spoken word with my boy Zev who will be exhibiting his incredible Art and flexing his DJ chops. It’s at Green Monday Studios in Carlton. It will be by donation and I invite you all to come sit with me. ️ - 29 days ago