Just think of it. The Occupy Movement has given the world a great amazing and unique gift. Just yesterday, I had a conversation with a fellow occupier about how just one picture of tents in Zuccotti Park or on the lawn of L.A. City Hall was a beautiful thing showing the world that people can assemble to address their grievances as guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution. As we all know, there were probably millions of pictures, videos, and various visuals from the first phase of Occupy between September and December.
Any movement like this, just like a human being, has to grow from infancy into maturity. Even the United States is the new kid on the block in the world of history and yet many have said worldwide that it became the most interesting experiment in governance in the history of the world.
Occupy has shown us how to revisit that infancy in many ways, and how we all must mature, a subject that I hope to revisit as time goes on. For now, what kind of gift is the Occupy Movement?
As human beings tend to be, there are going to be growing pains. Some people will go through those growing pains different than others which will cause some friction once in a while. Here is where we see a lot of the gift. We are giving it to each other when we disagree with each other as much if not more than when we agree with each other. We learn through solidarity of cause in that we really have a lot more in common than we are different from one another. What a beautiful gift. I am working with loving people from all walks and experiences in life and in every part of my life. I feel very enriched and very blessed.
Occupy has gotten a lot of people's attention. Some of that attention is focused on negativity when there are some clashes in egos, personalities, belief systems and priorities even in actions pertaining to the movement. It's like the Charles Dicken's classic tale and sometimes we have to deal with the 'bah humbugs' from the Scrooges of the world. This is when we realize that some of those differences can seem greater than we thought. We learn to process those feelings somehow and we move on and stay focused on the bigger purpose. Again, some process those feelings faster than others. Part of that solidarity is embracing patience, but sometimes we all must set the ego aside for the benefit of the movement, the greater Good.
As Dr. Cornell West said recently while speaking at All Saints in Pasadena: It is important "to be committed to something bigger than our egos, our groups, and our national communities." When we do our work with the right spirit of love and compassion even as we work through our understanding of the point of process, a term that occupiers have become very familiar with, the gift is that we can make a difference in a child's life, for instance, and we can do what we can to keep that child and their parents from being removed from their home through an unfair foreclosure.
This is just the beginning. Going back to my conversation with my fellow Occupy brother. Our greatest gift this year is what the movement does bring, can bring and will continue to bring to the world that we live in.... that is the gift of the Holiday that cannot be replaced by material things. That is the gift that we give to each other, to others in the community, and literally all around the world.
What kinds of gifts do we give to each other? We can give of ourselves to each other.... just to start.
Love and Peace NOW,