The Power of a Stand

Now that we know the vitality of the Earth is declining every day, the question becomes, “I’m just one person. How can I make a difference?”

According to Lynne Twist, co-founder of the Pachamama Alliance, “The answer starts by first asking, ‘Who do we need to be?’ And I think who we need to be are people who know that the decisions and choices we make now impact the future of life for the next hundred years. Everybody alive today has a role to play.”

Each of us has an opportunity to say what our lives are committed to, who we long to be—what we stand for. A stand is different than a position. A stand comes from the heart, from the soul and from vision. It is life-affirming, whereas a position is usually against something. When you’re living from a stand, your life can—and does—make a difference, and you experience a kind of spiritual fulfillment in the process.

There is tremendous power in turning a stand into a commitment. An unshakable commitment can be a source of great energy and, in some ways, of freedom. As environmental activist Van Jones says, “The important things you do in life come from your heart. And when we act from our hearts, something happens in us to make a miracle.”

So what do you stand for? What do you care deeply about in the world? Create a list of what brings you the greatest joy … what you love … what makes you most come alive.… What wakes you up as an individual, in your community and for institutions/ systems in order to promote active care of creation? Next, for each category, consider what is needed. Wherever you find a connection or overlap between the two lists, think if there is an action that could fulfill that connection, an action that could unite what you love to do with what you see as needed in the world. Finally, write down three to five actions you can take in each area in order to create a world that is environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling and socially just.

Your unique gifts and talents are needed in the world today. You don’t have a big role and you don’t have a small role—you just have your role. By becoming engaged, you invoke the power of one. The result will be a better world.

Portions of this article were taken from the symposium, “Awakening the Dreamer.”
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