Gaining Through Death
Last week, here in Canada, there was a death that moved many right across the country… It was movement of the people’s hearts and minds in response to the loss of a man who believed in unity and fairness above all else.
Jack Layton was a father, a deeply affectionate husband, and a grass roots organizer, always bringing to the fore the true needs of some of the often ignored members of society (including women). His social democratic focus allowed him to rise in our political realm, from the position of city councillor in Toronto to the head of the New Democratic Party and official leader of the opposition as a Member of Parliament in our capital city, Ottawa.
This man laughed; he sang, he cried, he showed us that he would get down on his knees with us, the people, when the moment called for it. There is so much said about politicians in the press…we see their actions decoded, dismantled and evaluated. With this sort of analysis, so much is lost about the truth of an individual, about what they choose to ‘stand and fight’ for, and about what this means to the people.
Jack made the world of politics and the world of representing the truth of the people – no matter who he had to do it with – look like fun. His simple honesty and grasp of the important detail of deep humanitarian issues made us Love him.
It’s our hearts that ache this week. We wonder who will represent us as truthfully and clearly as Jack did. We wonder if anyone will ever understand us again.
We wonder how we can now carry the torch and ‘fight’ for ourselves.
This, I believe, is his legacy: He showed us how to represent ourselves by doing it himself first. And, in his transition, he let us see how many others there are who feel the same way. We, the people, poured our hearts out in displays of chalk memorials across the country.
We shared the ‘loss’ as it became a gain…Jack showed us that we are the people, and that what we care about is something worth living and ‘fighting’ for.
One of these community touch points, or areas of rejuvenated awareness, is about this Earth we call “Mother”. Jack believed in her re-emergence as a strong and vibrant supporter for our human unfolding.
In an extraordinarily moving and prescient eulogy, another pre-eminent Canadian, Steven Lewis, former UN Ambassador for HIV-Aids in Africa, used the following words to sum up Jack Layton as man, politician, humanitarian and protector of the Earth and her people:
I believe that these words can be our mantra for the open appreciation of each other and of this glorious planet on which we live, which supports and guides us. In pursuit of our dreams and goals, sometimes we need to be active, sometimes we need to be still and simply listen ….
As you listen to the wisdom of Arundhati Roy, you will know whether in this moment there is harmony for you in action or in stillness…
“Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”
It almost seems too simple to be true…
Blessings and Love,
[tags]bringing-community-together, humanitarian, honesty, a-new-world, Jack-Layton, rejuvenated-awareness, Arundhati-Roy, Mother-Earth[/tags]