Donald Trump Is Making Me Fat
Like most humans, I am a creature of habit. I get up, go to the gym, go to work, come home, eat dinner with the family, walk the dog, write, stay up way too late, go to bed and do it again. Even my gym time is riddled with routine. I mix it up between three or four different workouts — RPM (spin), the circuit room (the elliptical machine), yoga or bodyflow (does that count as one or two?), a nice long swim. Pretty boring, I know. I used to do things like Body Attack and Body Combat, but the older I get the less interested I am in adversity training, you know, punching, kicking, going in for the kill. I’ll take a mile in the pool with my own thoughts over combat any day.
You get to know the people around you at the gym when you occupy the same space every day and you soon move past “hi” to life stuff, especially when every machine has a TV (which I don’t use) and generally people are watching the news. After awhile, you figure out where someone stands on an issue and if it’s along the lines of where you stand, then you’ll probably grouse about it, having common ground and all. And since the entire country is grousing about the election this same scene is probably playing out at gyms all across America.
And so it went with Lou who works out on the elliptical next to me from time to time. He’s a retired teacher and before that he was retired from the Navy. He put in his 20 years at both places and now lives the life of an active, happily retired person. He works out upwards of two or more hours a day so he’s in terrific shape. He reads voraciously, referees various high school sports events most weekends and some evenings, and has strong opinions about life and what he perceives as the lack of a moral compass contributing to the decline of Western civilization.
So after a rather spirited discussion the other morning Lou says to me, “Donald Trump is making me fat. I’m up two pounds in the last two weeks. Every time they start with the debates it’s like Live Theater. I grab the chips, I grab the cookies. I can’t stop with the snacks. I don’t know if it’s entertainment or frustration. I just know I can’t stop.” Ditto for me, Lou, and probably for the rest of the America, but because of the voyeuristic nature of our culture, none of us can stop watching.
My friend Lena who came to the U.S. from Venezuela forty years ago and who has been watching the destabilization of her former homeland bit by harrowing bit is understandably broken-hearted and perhaps a bit prescient about where our country is heading if we don’t get our collective $%#@ together and check our hatred and distrust of each other at the door. She says that in 1940, during the Second World War to combat the heavy air raids that decimated London known as The Blitz, Major Wellesley Tudor Pole, with the support and blessing of Winston Churchill, among others, asked the people of London to devote one minute of prayer for peace each night when Big Ben tolled 9 o’clock. Pole said:
“There is no power on earth that can withstand the united cooperation on spiritual levels of men and women of goodwill everywhere. It is for this reason that the continued and widespread observance of the Silent Minute is of such vital importance in the interest of human welfare.”
Whether the Silent Minute was responsible for the allies winning the war is anyone’s guess, but postwar at least one Nazi said the people of London had a “secret weapon” for which there was “no countermeasure.”
There is plenty of information out there these days that proves the power of intention. Books like The Field, by Lynne McTaggert, The Isaiah Effect, by Greg Braden, The Biology of Belief, by Bruce Lipton, The Hidden Messages in Water, by Dr. Masuro Emoto, You Can Heal Your Life, by Louise Hay, and movies like The Secret, and What the Bleep Do We Know? All you have to do is pick up a copy of any one of these books and try it out for yourself. Let thoughts of loving kindness, as the Buddhists say, flow like water to people who are totally the opposite of you. It may take thousands of years, but water always beats rock and love always beats indifference and hate.
We’re united for a reason, America. No matter who wins the election, the acrimonious nature of our communal dialogue will not disappear overnight, not without some positive actions on all of our parts. So why not start today? Send some love. Watch it grow. The reality of a new, promising, peaceful future is just a silent minute away.