Warrior Spirit


Two years ago
I was on my way out of the house
& a very nice lady called me.

She said, “We want you to teach
mindfulness for veterans.”
I said, “You know,
I don’t do clinical anymore.”
She said, “Yes, I read your website.”
I said, “You know,
I just do spiritual now.”
She said, “Yes, I read your website.”
I asked, “Who did you say you are with?”
She said, “The local office of Veterans Affairs.”
I said, “The VA wants me to teach
mindfulness meditation
for traumatized military veterans?!?!?”

I have been studying & teaching
mindfulness for three decades.

Dear friends have said to me,
“Why are you so into mindfulness?
Nobody cares about that.”

And suddenly…
the United States Federal Government,
not especially known for being woo-woo,
has adopted an ancient spiritual technique
as an appropriate method for treating
the equally ancient psychic wounding of warriors.

This is a sign of world change.

So I have been working with
a group of military veterans
meeting weekly for eighteen months,
not for clinical therapy
but for the practice of mindfulness.

We have grown a great depth
of trust & care between us.

And from them I have learned
some things of import to us all:

Traumatization is a spiritual crisis.
Our naive sense of ourselves gets broken.
Wrong things can touch us.
And wrong things do change us.

But that crisis is the beginning
of the journey of awakening.

We can come to peace
with wrong things
by letting them teach us
what is the right thing.

There is one elite distinction
these friends of mine have in common.
Each has passed through the point
of willingness to give one’s life
for something other than one’s own self.

The healing of the world demands
just that struggle to be of service.

The truth will win
& the lies will fail,
because truth is real
& lies are naught.

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