Freedom Is Free

Freedom isn’t free? What’s the cost? Bloodshed? How much killing will it take to free you? Are you incapable of being free unless I am killed? A child, mother, boy, father, man, or woman has to die for you to be free? Within the battlefields where you claim freedom is found, what are you free from? What are you free to do after the bloodshed, which you weren’t free to do before the killing?

I know we can all agree that if we placed a five year old representative from every country, nation, and tribe in the same room and left them alone they would not kill one another. They would be in mysterious wonder and awe with one another in hearing different languages, seeing different dress and physical features. They would play. They may become cranky and argue, but they would not innately be inclined to kill each other. Why is that? Because killing and hatred are taught through an indoctrination process that is riddled with sociopathic tendencies contrary to our human nature – our spirit. The root of all violence is fear, and the root of all fearlessness is love. As human beings we all come from the same root – love. We can be transplanted, yet our divine root is the same. Depending upon our environment we may have to dig a little deeper to remember the magnificent root that connects all life, but it can be done; and this is of the utmost importance if we truly desire freedom and the peace that comes with true freedom.

To be indoctrinated by religion, religious institutions, governments, flags, and anthems is considered patriotic, yet in this patriotism when we no longer see another human being as a human being, but rather someone who must die for us to be free, where is the freedom in this patriotic perception that separates us, and reduces fellow human beings to targets with a bounty on their heads for freedom? What is the difference between an American mother, Palestinian mother, Canadian mother, any mother holding her dead child who was killed in war?

All militaries train people to become soldiers. To cultivate a civilian to a soldier, the civilian is taken through extensive training to no longer see a human being in a different uniform as a human being, but a target. This intensive and extensive training is required because instinctually the vast majority of human beings, apart from psychopaths, do not have the innate desire to kill other human beings. Killing is contrary to the being in human being. Human beings are not instinctually inclined to kill one another. Militaries train soldiers to kill, while government and religious institutions train civilian, non-combatants to cheer for the team that bears the same flag and anthem. This process creates sociopathic and psychopathic tendencies throughout all societies in both soldiers and civilians, which diminishes the civilized in the word civilian. At best, sociopathic and psychopathic indoctrination creates apathy, and at worst it creates a pleasure about a human being on the “other team” who had to die, yet great mourning about the human being on “our team” who had to die. Did anyone really have to die? We may say R.I.P (Rest In Peace), however, we as humanity can change R.I.P to P.I.R (Peace Is Rest) and in P.I.R no one has to die for another to be free and at peace. We as humanity can find peace in living, not dying or killing. Besides, if killing for peace and freedom truly worked there would be Heaven on Earth by now.

Before the gradual introduction of borders, boundaries, flags, and anthems which made way to the spiritual bipolar disorder known as separation, which avalanched to full-blown sociopathic and psychopathic societies, freedom was free. We were free to know our true selves through each other and all of creation. Perhaps we are afraid of seeing our sacredness again, and each time we catch a glimpse of the Creator of our understanding through another person, we either run from that sacred reflection or kill it. We as a society are not afraid of our own shadows, we are afraid of our own light, never realizing the simplicity that each human being is a piece that pieces peace together.

Everyone is a door to freedom for others. However, before we can recognize the doorways to freedom in others we must first open this doorway within ourselves. Like children, if adults listened, truly listened to our hearts, we would not hear hatred or violence. No, our hearts sing of love, the remembrance of true freedom, and a longing to be open and share our true voice once again. An open heart is an open door that frees all captives. It’s such a short walk from our head back to our heart, only seventeen inches, and in taking these very few steps within ourselves we remember that freedom is free.

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Moments of No Words

As a writer, I love words, yet I also love it when words stop – those moments in this life when there are no words. For it is in those moments where we see if the words we’ve written, spoken or quoted ever meant anything.

They talked and talked
Until they couldn’t talk anymore
The last words they wrote
were a question:
If we couldn’t speak
for the rest of our life,
what would the rest
of our life speak about us?

Dear Friend,

Dear Friend,

Recently I’ve encountered many people who are and have been doing incredible healing work in their communities. And because of all that’s going on in the world, they’re now questioning if they’ve made or are making any positive difference at all. In my travels and conversations with family and friends, doubt and cynicism seem to be on the rise. This concerns me. God placed this letter on my heart to share love and encouragement with you.

In the past twenty-six years in my calling in youth development I have attended many funerals for young people. I have experienced many grieving parent’s tears shed upon my shoulders as they screamed in agony from losing their child. I’ve been in courtrooms many times as a young person I knew and worked with was given a life sentence. I’ve been in abandoned buildings where children have not had any solid foods for over a week. I’ve been in drug houses and assisted law enforcement in rescuing youth who were being bought and sold for sex. I could go on and on with examples about the evil that is encountered in my work, our society, and around the world, and I am sure you can too.

We can count our scars as the number of times we’ve been wounded and compare tragedies, or we can count our scars as the number of times we’ve been healed and share miracles. It’s not about what you walk into, it’s about what you walk in with. You, my dear friend, walk into the darkest moments of people’s lives delivering light. Can we change what’s already happened in our lives or the lives of others? No. Can we influence what happens next? Absolutely! And sometimes we forget that influencing what happens next is more powerful than what happened before. Inter-generational healing is more powerful than inter-generational trauma. And what an honor it is to be part of a cycle of healing. Thank you for choosing with the Creator of your understanding to be the healing force you’re created to be. I could go on and on with stories of overcoming all odds, fortitude, resilience, healing and miracles that is encountered in my work, our society, and around the world, and I am sure you can too.

A dear friend of mine, who has selflessly served his community for many decades recently described his decades of countless contributions as, “It’s like trying to punch a hole in water. It doesn’t do any good. It’s just a nice illusion.” I reminded him that feeling as if what we’re doing is not making a positive difference is the illusion, not the truth. We all feel like that from time to time, especially after experiencing tragedy. But what is it that we guide our young people to do when they’ve experienced pain, loss and tragedy? We guide them in honoring their feelings. We guide them in expressing their feelings in a manner that is not destructive. We guide them in channeling their pain, loss, and tragedy into healing medicines for themselves, their family, and our communities. We guide them in how to use every stone that life hits them with as a stepping stone to create a better path for themselves and others, instead of using those stones to build a wall around their hearts and give up.  And isn’t that exactly what guided you to the path of service you’re on right now? Now isn’t the time to give up. Now is the time to remember why you started and why you’ve held on so long.

Any reason why we want to give up on our vision, mission, and purpose is also the same place where our vision, mission, and purpose can become even more clear, refueled and restored. The work you do is so important and I thank you for doing it. I honor you for doing it.

Sincerely,

Anthony Goulet

Waking Up or Getting Up?

Don’t just get up, wake up to the truth that you are a sacred blessing, miracle and gift. Vision begins within. The true vision of love extends outward in healing. The distorted vision of fear projects outward in destruction. 

Until someone can see you as a sacred blessing, miracle and gift, they cannot see you.
Until you can see yourself as a sacred blessing, miracle and gift, you cannot see you.

Decide for Yourself

A rose never decides against itself. It allows all of its beauty to unfold, both receiving and giving all of the perfection that it is. You are a sacred blessing, miracle and gift. Any resistance to this truth is ego. The ego only wants separation. And what a separation it is to loath and condemn yourself, then project that violent separation outward to others.

Who came up with the false image of you that says you’re anything less than a sacred blessing, miracle and gift? As sure as you did not create yourself, you did not create this false image of yourself. This false image reduces the son and daughter of the Most High Creator to a guilty, condemned, disconnected, unworthy, unknown, and insignificant fragment. This false image is violence, both the cause and the symptoms. This violent fragmentation is the opposite of the whole and Holy truth that the ego does not want you to remember, because in this Holy memory the ego dissolves to the nothing it is. Do not bow to this false image of yourself anymore. No matter how temping it may be to say that this is humble, because there is nothing humble about deciding against yourself without the Creator. Humility is deciding for yourself with the Creator.

Arrogance is thinking of yourself as anything other than what you are. What you are is a sacred blessing, miracle and gift, yet even those words are mere sparks compared to the Light of Who you are from and all that is you.

Dear child of the Great One, how great is your memory that needs only one word to dissolve the thin veil you think separates you from your Maker and all of creation. In this instant you are called back to the Creator and yourself. In this instant your ancient Holy name is known again by you, calling you, speaking it clearly in your heart. In this instant you remember that it is not a journey of one thousand miles, but only one step that takes you from hell to heaven.

Lay down your mask. The masks you’ve worn are no longer necessary because you are welcome here.
Lay down your hopelessness. You are not hopeless. You are as certain as God Who created you.

Lay down your perfectionism. You are and have always been perfect.
Lay down your desire to become someone. You are already much more than some one, you are all within the One.
Lay down the desire to become something. You are already more than some thing, you are everything.
Lay down the weapons that ego has forged against you, and then projected towards others.

You are Love. Love is eternal and beyond destruction. The thin veil of false images telling you that you are anything less than a sacred blessing, miracle and gift are mere distortions of your Holy reflection. The false images of ego have painted over the mirror that obscures your Holy reflection, so when you look at the lies, you think it’s you, but it’s not. You’re beyond the lies that blur your vision. You’re beyond the past that the ego uses to justify self-imprisonment. You’re beyond the false images the ego has constructed that blur you from you, God, and all of creation. The Creator Who lovingly hung the earth on nothing manifested you from this same great love.

In this instant you remember that the slate is clear, and always has been.
In this instant you wipe the mirror clean of all the false images that cloud your true reflection.
In this instant you see your true self again and remember you are a sacred blessing, miracle and gift.
In this instant you reach out to the loving life-giving rain and sunshine that nourishes you and allows the beauty of you to unfold.
In this instant you decide for yourself with God and bloom within the sacredness you are.
In this instant you decide for yourself and allow the illusions of the ego to roll off of your flawless petals.
In this holy instant you decide for yourself, with God, and remember that you are Love.

The rose in full bloom
Nourished when open
Magnificence displayed
Never deciding against itself
The rose is humble

Rose with poem II

Why Do You Do It?

After more than a few injuries and too many 15-20 hour work days to count facilitating interventions in my full time job as street outreach crisis counselor, someone asked me why I put all of myself into the full time work we do with the youth and young adults we serve. Well …

Because it’s not work or a job, it’s a calling. Truly a calling from God. There were many situations that called me to this work, most of them were extremely challenging situations that God used to cultivate deeper love, respect, honor and compassion. One of many experiences was when I was homeless and walking through a neighborhood during the Christmas holidays in Michigan. 

I was wandering around with no particular destination other than wanting to get to a 24 hour store or restaurant where I could warm up and take a nap. It was snowing and as I was walking through a neighborhood I looked across the street and saw a house with a huge window, and through that window I saw a family eating dinner. They were passing food around the table, eating, laughing and talking. I remember sitting down by a tree in the snow just staring across the street, watching the family enjoying life and each other’s company. I don’t know how long I was there, but I remember what I was thinking. I was thinking, how the fuck did I wind up in this situation? I’m not stupid. I have talents and abilities. I know my life is supposed to be more than this. I feel so lonely. So lonely. 

That feeling of loneliness was so intense that for a little while I forgot about the cold. Loneliness can make us numb. When our needs are frozen, literally frozen, we become numb to so many things. And when God sends someone into our lives to bring God’s warm light to thaw our needs, meet our needs, and show us a better way to think and live, it is a miracle so intense that all you want to do is be a vessel through which that miracle is delivered to others. 

If it’s partial or conditional, it’s not love. And if it’s not love, then I wouldn’t dare refer to it as a calling.