Social change can be harsh and unyielding. It can take a toll on you, your family, your friends, your colleagues and your adversaries.
The sustenance for this journey comes from what Quebec philosopher and social commentator Jacques Dufresne describes as “moral oxygen.” Our bodies can’t exist without oxygen. Our souls need similar nourishment. Just as we must protect the air we breathe from contamination, so we must protect the quality of our moral oxygen. Otherwise, we are vulnerable to heartache, burnout, addiction or cynicism. The loss of the soul is painless, Dufresne warns. We best pay attention to what nourishes and replenishes us.
The longer we journey on the road to inner healing and wholeness, the more the sense of belonging grows and deepens. The sense is not just one of belonging to others and to a community. It is a sense of belonging to the universe, to the earth, to the air, to the water, to everything that lives, to all humanity.