Dr. Mike Obsatz, Professor Emeritus at Macalester College
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How to Cope in Times of Turmoil
These are challenging times. The pandemic has continued now for six months. Over 162,000 Americans have died. Five million people in America have experienced COVID-19. It is sad. We don't know when it will end.
Every day can be difficult. There is the continuous grieving of losses -- loss of freedom, loss of physical touch from loved ones, loss of familiar daily routines, loss of income, loss of security and safety.
There is a great deal of anger, rage, and violence across the country. Hate groups, racists, and other hostile people are acting out. Cities, including Minneapolis and St. Paul, have witnessed arson, looting, and increased homicides.
We may mistrust those in charge -- the political leaders, the police, and others. Where do we find stability in this time of unrest and upheaval?
How do we get through it? We can pray and connect spiritually. We can live in gratitude for every little opportunity, every sunny day, every beautiful creation of nature.
In his book, "Ordinary Magic: Everyday Life as a Spiritual Path," John Welwood reminds us there is magic in simple things. There are spiritual opportunities all around us. During the last six months I have tried to notice more trees and flowers, and pay attention to details I have previously ignored.
Here are some possible strategies for managing the uncertainty, stress and anxiety of these challenging days:
It is time to love one's neighbor as oneself. It is time to ignore petty arguments and stay focused on love, peace and spiritual connection.
Peace and blessings,