Hope = Naive?

Photo courtesy of Timothy Dennis

Hope = Naive?

Somewhere hope became synonymous with weakness. As though to have hope was something only the downtrodden with no future could have, encouraged to have— the only protection between them and the devil’s doom. If we live in a false hope that someday, some heavenly not now day, all will be sweet roses, harps and songs, then we never pause, never stop to look around at the beauty we possess in this moment.

Usually the peddlers of this type of weak and silly hope are televangelists, drug peddlers, and fashion advertisers. It is purchased with a hidden hogtied despair in the present.

What if radical, revolutionary hope was viewed as honest, strong, even powerful beyond measure. What if radical hope was the only superhero quality that energizes and empowers compassionate change?

Emily Dickenson lived a hermit life, alone by choice. To some, this may seem sad, antisocial and weak. Her writing however, was transcendent, “Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul.”

There was a time I thought I would never walk without pain. Trying to hike (my true love) and hobbling along, unable to keep up with my family, my heart sank. If I had known then that my mind was malleable, my body could change, and today, three years later and surviving a car accident, not only am I walking without pain, I get down on the floor and get back up. Look Ma, no hands!

Hope isn’t weak, it is what keeps us open to the malleable nature of life. The only thing that can concretize is my mind, and if I breathe with compassion for where I am today, I can bring wings to my hope in the right now, not some unidentified heavenly future. I may not do scorpion pose from the ground, but I can do it with my yoga stand, and I feel powerful, hopeful and joyful. My new mindset of possibility allows for more open hope, more joy. I stop comparing myself to insta yoga models, rejoice in my life today, grateful for all that is mine in this moment. I feel my muscles loosen, my breath even, and my heart open.

It is time for the quiet flowers, the square pegs, the young, the lonely, the older, the stiffer, the humans of the world to stand up and keep standing up, hollering hallelujahs of gratitude. I open my eyes and see all around examples of these strong and faithful ones, that stand with love, with compassion, with ruthless hope, a persistence  that refuses ‘NO’, refuses shaming, belittlement, microaggressions, violence and terror and are committed beyond measure to stop apologizing for being right, just right as we are in this moment.

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