There has never been a time in my memory where hope and fear lay so close together in the same bed. I am like the princess who awakened after being asleep for many years. I went along in my sleep-walking way, thinking that we were on a trajectory to being more tolerant, less racist and kinder to our neighbors. I saw a growing understanding of those who are different from us but part of our human tribe. And then the season of darkness came upon us.
The American electorate, on the Republican side in particular, began to respond with cheers and votes to the most divisive candidate since George Wallace—Donald Trump. His rhetoric appeals to the baser instincts of a predominately white audience, men and women, who have felt separate and unequal for a long time. He gets cheers when he says that a protester at one of his speeches would have been carried out on a stretcher not that many years ago. “I would love to punch him in the face!” he yells. Behind him, a group of supporters roars their support, as if they were at an NFL game and their team just scored. So why would I say “bless” him?
Because he is showing us ourselves as we are now. By our energetic response to him, we can feel which doors we want to open to create our future self. This is a very powerful choice point.
My main work with clients is exploring our awareness and creation of energy and the deliberate refinement of our own energy as it projects out onto others and the greater world. This is essential in our human evolution. In a nutshell, we are creatures of energy. Physics confirms this, but so does the machine known as a magnetometer where our magnetic field, which extends from the heart, is measured. This field extends at least three feet around our body—probably further—but current machines can’t measure that far. The magnetic field around our body resonates at the same frequency as the measurable field around Earth. Put simply, we walk around on the planet broadcasting who we are every second of every minute of every day. When large groups of people are together in one place, responding in a similar way—such as at a football game—the magnetic field becomes interconnected and powerful. We can feel the energy field.
On the other hand, when large groups of people are united in grief, as the world was after the Twin Towers were hit, we broadcast what we call “Global Grief,” a phenomenon I wrote about in my book “The Gifts of Grief: Finding Light in the Darkness of Loss.” This energy affects the planet and can change the magnetic field of Earth. It’s similar to how anxiety affects the heart. The more grief, suffering and anger affecting our interconnected planet, the more we feel the emotions of grief, suffering and anger.
When a charismatic leader, whether it’s John F. Kennedy, Pope Francis or Hitler, sends his energy out to his followers, what happens is predictable. It’s like our magnetic fields are contagious. In the case of Kennedy, his hope made us hopeful. On his trip to the United States, Pope Francis sent a message of peace and love that resonated around the world for a time. Hitler’s hate and xenophobia had repercussions that still echo.
Donald Trump’s message is one that appeals to our basest instincts—he tells us how we have been done wrong and we don’t have to take it anymore. He does this by identifying those individuals or groups who are supposedly at fault, like immigrants and Muslims. He creates fear in his followers that they will lose their jobs or their benefits due to those people. The full-throated cheers and howls of agreement can only be obtained with this kind of rhetoric. Candidates who attempt to lay out plans or workable strategies are about as exciting to those addicted to entertainment as most of our teachers were in school.
In this era of reality television, we now have entertainment as the political reality. Education, experience and intelligence are rejected, as well as temperament—something I find the most important quality in a leader. It’s especially clear that we need cool, balanced, compassionate, knowledgeable leadership in these days of conflict and constant change on every front. What kind of person do we want in this unsettled and dangerous world?
Donald’s candidacy has a deep purpose. In showing us our prejudices, our addictions and the doors we are closing, he models the black hole of anger and judgement. If the angels of our better selves arise within us, we can make out the ray of light blazing forth from that dark vision. That light challenges us to rise to our higher energetic instincts. Dark hasn’t got a chance against the light. So, we must “Bless those who challenge us…” and stay focused, building the energy of compassion, hope and forgiveness so our children and theirs will grow and prosper in the energy of the light.