I had an experience this last weekend that I would like and feels important for me to share with you!
I was at home in my little studio apartment in Brooklyn, it was around 8 pm on a Saturday evening, still daylight, my windows were wide open as a first cool breeze entered the room after a really hot and humid day here in New York. I became aware of a yelling male voice outside. It would not stop. It even got louder and more aggressive and so did the weeping of a woman. It went on and on and on, with not much variation in his wording which alternated between fucking and bitch or a combination of the two and the energy down there on the street got worse.
At a certain moment, I as was sitting at my desk writing, I jumped straight up from my chair with the direct calling to go down there. As I just got home after a long day and wasn’t supposed to go out anywhere, I was already in my homey dress with some old, striped men shorts and an even older loose t-shirt that I’m dragging with me now for probably the last ten years until it will completely fall apart. I just slipped into my flipflops and grabbed the key. Outside of my apartment door there was this short instant, where the voice in my mind was saying “Are you sure you are doing the right thing, Tina?” – but in the same moment my hand was already turning the key in the lock. So, no question!
When I walked out of the entrance door of the building they were right there at the side – she pressed against the wall by a wardrobe tall guy with fire literally flashing out of his eyes. So it wasn’t a very good idea to stop there as it obviously didn’t look like that I was going out for a date and, unfortunately, I also don’t have a dog that I could have taken out in my pajamas for the last evening round or to the next green tree island about twenty meters away at the roadside. I moved straight on and sat down on a fire hydrant next to the tree.
The street was empty and should remain like that without a single pedestrian passing by, strange enough. Ok, it was weekend, Saturday evening and really hot as well as summer holidays already started here, so many of the New Yorkers simply have left the city. Yet, I was surprised that I couldn’t see even one person looking down from a window or checking what's going on, although the raging voice was noticeable until the end of the street and beyond.
I was sitting there on this fire hydrant and thinking what to do – and I’m describing really instants in time here. It was clear that going up there and interfering wasn’t an alternative because this guy had the power and was in a state to easily eliminate us both at the same time. And then, as from god send, I had this remembrance of a situation about a year ago when I was with a beloved friend of mine.
We were walking in a small village in Bavaria. It was already dark back then on this summer evening. There was this drunk man in the street screaming with the worst wording against some immigrants living in the village. It was horrible and heart breaking and also here a situation where human sight was drenched, build up and veiled with blind rage. I could observe my friend at some point slowing his pace next to me until he came to a sudden stand and said only one word – kind, yet very clear, loud and firm: Stop! Indicating no other body movement or addressing anything else towards the man. He just stood there motionless for some minutes like a rock and – apart from his physical presence, there was an all radiating, inner presence that, from one instant to another, called upon total silence in the street. The man did not even argue, not a whisper. All was absorbed and embraced by the silence where before there was this field of hammering aggression.
The moment I could see this in front of my inner eye, I became very peaceful, quiet, soft and yet so undoubtedly firm – that was my reminder! There was nothing for me “to do” in this situation, not even the need to say a word. Just being there, fully present! I knew that this guy could smash my head in an instant if he overreacts but, at the same time, he can never destroy what I am essentially, nor touch or harm. I was just here to show up, truly for my Self. And further as a person who sees, who doesn’t look away or pretend that nothing is happening. Both was – and truly always is a decision! Even though I wasn't doing anything and also couldn't in form of physical or verbal action in this case, I could decide: I’m present in this moment in time here now on this street.
The guy continued to shout at the young woman, spit in her face, had his hands formed as fists in his pockets and looked like a bull from the back while pressing with his heavy body the fragile girl into the wall. She was whining and literally trying to vanish in the bricks. What happened then was that he abruptly turned around and walked towards me. He stopped half way and we looked each other into the eyes. I didn’t move or had any expression of any kind, neither rejection nor acceptance, in my face. I was just looking at him. He then turned again, walked back towards the girl, spit again.. and so on. This repeated three times exactly like this. But I could notice every time he turned away from me again that his tension got less even though he was really trying hard to keep it together. After the third round he didn’t come back to me. And his screaming nearly has stopped. The young woman articulated the whole time and plead him that she wants to call her father which – after he was trying to block this by taking over her phone at the beginning – he then let kind of happen. I was still sitting there on my fire hydrant, now with eyes closed. There was no need for paying further attention for the sake of lifesaving. The wave has calmed. I didn’t listen to what they were exchanging. She got picked up, he left or the other way around.
After some more minutes silent on the street, I also went back up to my apartment. When I entered, I realized that I hadn’t even taken my phone with me in case for an emergency call. It was still lying on my desk. So it wasn’t about this. It was about THAT! Ultimately that, what happened. Then my eyes were gliding down my body and clothes and, as a second thing, I realized only now WHAT old loose dragged-over-continents-t-shirt I had picked that evening: LOVE IS THE WORD.
I am writing all this down neither because of “me” nor to share another story of a suppressed woman under hashtag “me too” kind of thing – because for me, to be honest, these roles just can and often do switch in just an instant and terrible things can happen in all directions (maybe with different forms of expression) as long as we, each single one of us, are not taking full responsibility for our own internal template and make friends with our shadow sides as the engine for real transformation and ultimately the source of our greatest potential and light.
I am writing all this down because this situation was a reminder for me to SHOW UP. And showing up – especially in the times we are living in – is as much personal as it is universal. Eventually, showing up often has little or less to do with “doing” than rather being! Yes, I was taking action and not being passive but then I surrendered to the moment and let presence take over. And it takes over! Not we are taking over! We only feel overrun and overwhelm when we think, it’s us, the person, who is doing and has to do all the time. Interrelatedness of all beings, energy as a matter of fact – even though invisible – are really undeniable, underlying truths when moving into the future.
I am convinced that the world doesn’t need any more money spent on weapons and so many other “official” and personal fences and protection walls. All that is ever needed is an awakened soul, an open heart and a clear mind. THAT is and will be the greatest remedy of the all so many struggles our world and the earth is currently facing. This is what we are called for! These three together form a sacred trinity that is the golden, nonviolent "weapon" of our time!
So, today, I want to ask you to remind yourself or let yourself with a wide-open heart be reminded by life of, at least, one thing during this week – and it can be so tiny and totally personal that only you will know – where your SHOW UP! And, in addition – choose three people in your life that truly inspire you, where you feel loved, seen, supported and encouraged to live the greatest version that you are – and send these people a note. Do it!! Let them know that you love them, that you care about them and what they mean to you. And don’t expect anything back. Things are never linear and you’ll never know how it will find its way back to you.
We are here to remind each other! Ultimately: LOVE IS THE WORD!
Love and great blessings as you go through your days!
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