Someone who teaches, lives, and works in El Paso asked the question: “As a yoga teacher how do I continue to remain positive in the face of this.”

My response:
You don’t need to be positive. You only need to be real. The way I see the most powerful function of “the light” we cultivate in our yoga practice is to shine that light on our personal and collective darkness so that we can finally see what and where it is we have neglected, hidden, not tended to, pretended , or even “thought and prayed” it way back into the corners of our being.

We need places of refuge and healing- yes. And part of healing is turning our light to look deeply and closely at the wound.

We have so many personal and collective wounds. Ones rooted in systems and culture and those same ones defining our actions and interactions.

We need your light to illuminate this darkness. I am willing to look directly at this mangled bloody tragedy in El Paso through the lens of your light which is closer to it than mine is over here in Atlanta.

I say all of this to say… feel all of your feelings and express them however you need to. This is terror. This is tragedy. This is happening too often in our beloved country. A wall will not protect us, because the enemy is within, emboldened, and overly armed. I will not turn my face away from what ever you or the people of El Paso show me.

My response ends there yet my reflection didn’t. Sara Clark said it best “To see how police can gently escort yet another mass-murderer to safety when black and brown folk are gunned downed simply for existing is nauseating.”

We have at least two deep profound terrorizing wounds ripped/ splayed open here:

People in El Paso living daily life doing normal every day type things gunned down. Gone.
The white mass murderer apprehended alive. Unarmed Trayvon Martin was gunned down and killed. Sandra Bland was to. Tamir Rice. Gone. So many Black lives gone at the hands of those supposed to protect and serve.
Yet a mass murderer was apprehended without hurting him.

Are we paying attention to all of this?

We can’t skip this. This is what the light is for. To see our way in this collective darkness.