3/19 Eisenstein

Annie Dreisbach

3/19//14 Reflection

In “The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know is Possible”, Charles Eisenstein talks about what individuals can do to make the world a better place. By embracing our interconnectedness with each other and the environment we live in, we can create an atmosphere of love and acceptance. Although the book lays out many anecdotes about hope, truth, and righteousness (among many other things) one thing that seemed to be the foundation of his story was the idea that we are all connected. This interbeing is a part of everyone and through it we are inseparate from the Universe. This explains why we are so often affected by things that happen to other people. When we see someone get hurt, we feel hurt ourselves. When we see other celebrate joyful occasions, we can feel happy with them. The reason for this is because when something is happening to our peers, friends, even strangers, it is happening to us. Eisenstein uses the environment as a reflection of our interbeingness. Even though most of us are not actively and directly chopping down trees and polluting the environment, in fact many of us distance ourselves from the problem, we still feel the pain of the destruction of our natural resources. Occasionally we may feel relief from this pain, maybe through love or grace, but for the most part we are immersed in this suffering everyday. It is only in those moments of respite that we know what it means to truly live.

This aspect of Eisenstein’s book resonated with me because it is so closely related to Dossey’s book “One Mind”. The concept of interconnectedness is very powerful and can be used to motivate social actions. In “One Mind”, Dossey also uses the environment as an example, saying that many people separate themselves from the problem of climate change because they think they alone will not make enough of an impact. But these two authors argue that by working to preserve our natural environment, we are harnessing the power of our interbeing and it will result in a better way of life—something in line with how we were intended to live.

Additionally, I was also very intrigued when Eisenstein said we are all living in a “sea of pain”. We often find temporary pleasure in material things that work to separate us from the interbeing and instead grow in us greed and selfishness. Although I agree that often I am overwhelmed with feelings of sadness and despair when I think about the current state of our world. But I am more frequently overwhelmed by feelings of joy and hope. Today we are surrounded by tragedies broadcasted to us from all media. It is rarer to see a heart-warming story on the news than a story about disaster or destruction. However, that does not mean these moments of transcendence do not happen. I think one way to change is by celebrating these experiences of true life and broadcasting positivity. Through this, we can embrace our interconnectedness and become united.

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