Earlier this year, my spiritual partner, Veronica asked me what I thought about Trump as an Essene mirror, to which I replied, “I don’t know, but that is interesting.” I thought about this for a couple days and came to the conclusion that he is a mirror which reflects teachings about ourselves. As soon as I came to this realization I immediately felt joy and appreciation wash over me, cleansing me of negative feelings. I thought to myself, “Of course! Why didn’t I realize this before? It is so obvious now!”
Veronica and I learned about the Essenes through a couple of books by Gregg Braden. The Essenes were the keepers of the Dead Sea Scrolls, or at least had a copy in their library–and when I say library, I mean a multitude of clay jars in a series of caves somewhere in the West Bank territory. The Essenes are a sect of Judaism and a lot of scholars speculate that Jesus and his Earthly parents were Essenes. From the Essenes we have received a powerful and sophisticated tool for understanding interpersonal human relationships and the role of emotion in our lives referred to as the Essene mirrors. I find them to be clever tools for self-transformation and healing. These mirrors won’t solve all of your problems, but they serve well to help expand your consciousness.
I thought it would be a great spiritual investment to try to understand why life is giving us Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States of America. This article allows me to thoughtfully share my spiritual lessons that I learned from Donald Trump. I will first touch upon two of the Seven Essene Mysteries of Self. In the third Essense mirror, I gaze into it as I imagine myself as a Trump supporter in the hopes to gain an empathetic perspective. In the second Essene mirror, I look into the mirror as myself to gain some spiritual insight. Lastly I share some practices that help me cope. In these unique times of Trump’s presidency, I humbly invite you to reflect on who we are and what this world means to us now and going into the future.
Learning From the Mystery of the Third Mirror
Compassion is a universal concept in all the major religions. In order to lead with compassion one must support empathy. I truly want to understand the general viewpoint of a Trump supporter. This was not an easy task for me as I did not vote for the 45th president and I generally disagree with just about everything he stands for. I see Donald Trump as a symbol of narcissism, greed, and prejudice.
As I stand in the shoes of a Trump supporter and gaze into the third Essene mirror of Trump, I see a reflection of what was lost, given away, or taken away. I get a glimpse of someone who feels lost and fearful in our world that is racing away from a time that I cling to–a time when America felt great, which has slowly been taken away. I have a lot of fear about the new world. When growing up I never had to worry about terrorism the way I do now. I never perceived of my Christian based religion being under threat before, but I do now. The America that I once perceived had a lot more familiar faces and share my common beliefs. These days I feel like a visitor in our own land and something in my life feels wrong and incomplete. I used to have abundance and opportunities, but now I struggle to make ends meet. New voices are calling me out for crimes like racism and gender inequality that I don’t feel that we have committed, but I am too worried about going to work and paying the bills to examine this possibility. All I know is that these other voices are against me. The old way of playing the game is play to win, survival of the fittest, but these other voices are saying that’s not fair. I am too old to change. I find myself easily caught up in the vitriolic conservative news and sensational talk shows. I really want to stand up for what we believe in, but I don’t feel the government is going to do anything to address my fears. I am angry about a lot of things in life. It feels good to have a strong leader who will crush the opposition and instill the old traditional way of life to our once great country.
As I step away from the Trump mirror and take off the shoes of a Trump supporter, I contemplate on my new experience. I do not condone hateful actions, but being able to examine their plight makes it easier to forgive and let go of resentful feelings. This exercise allows me to try to understand their point of view and give myself the opportunity to see that there is a lot of me in them. I believe that we are all capable of being compassionate, and sometime we must move between indifference, denial, or polarization before we can have an emotional desire to help those we feel empathy towards. I also see universal fears of separation, self-worth, and trust. Fear of separation and abandonment is very apparent in context to the uprise of anti-immigrant sentiments. As a minority, I can identify with the fear of self-worth because of racist sentiments. In return I believe those who have racist views tend to have fear of self-worth and use racist ideology to improve their self-worth. Fear of trust can be easy to understand when there is unwillingness to understand each others plight.
Learning From the Mystery of the Second Mirror
The second Essene mirror is a reflection of what we judge. When you have a judgment against something, this mirror will bring those people and events into your life as an opportunity to forgive and let go of your judgement. Judgement can be extremely stubborn, but when paired with an emotional charge it can make one extremely volatile. This mirror can be subtle and elusive, which can make for a significant lesson.
When I look at Trump as an Essene mirror, I see a mirror of that which is judged. My judgements against him are also extended to judgment against those who support him. This creates a lot of stress and suffering for me, especially in my relationships with those who I discovered support him. It hurts to know that some friends and family members do not value the most intrinsic moral beliefs that I hold dear. To an extreme it feels like betrayal, otherwise it is a big let down and disappointment in those relationships. As a person of color, I feel fearful about my own safety and the safety of others. I fear the government will change its legislation and take my mother away even though she is a legal immigrant. I fear the police will see me and the ones I love as a threat and shoot me.
By looking into this mirror, I discovered that my judgement has invited the exact same qualities in myself. I listened to a rabbi talk about ego and judgement once, and what he said has stuck with me. He said that if you judge something bad in someone then you probably have it in you, because you are arousing that judgement inside yourself against that person. Once it is inside you it can fester quietly and slowly consume you without you ever realizing it. In this life lesson, I learned that our negative judgments of those who are being fearful and hateful, is creating the same fear and hate in myself. It made me realize that my judgement toward others creates a division inside myself and outside myself, which ultimately keeps me from being happy.
Living With Trump
I have been trying to practice forgiveness, letting go, and compassion by allowing others the ownership of their experiences, even when I don’t agree with it. When I am able to do this, I feel myself being released from my judgements. I believe judgement, control, fear, and hate share outcomes of separation. I like to believe that separation is an illusion and that everything is united in wholeness, both in matter and consciousness. I find it easier to not judge others by trying to identify the judgement within myself, which reminds me to remember that the judgement served its purpose as an opportunity for me to experience and learn from.
Love has a cost. To love I must let myself be open to pain. My capacity to feel pain, and be empathetic for the pain of others, shows how deeply I can love. Some of the ancients believed that the meaning of life is to experience life in the physical, so that we can eternally keep those spiritual lessons. If we open ourselves when we love, it seems natural that we close ourselves when in fear and hate. When we hurt, we can heal ourselves through forgiveness and letting go, but this is not the same as “blowing things off”. I find a deep healing when I confront the pain and turn it into a life lesson. Otherwise the feeling is stored in my inner basement with an unmarked box waiting to be opened or triggered.
If someone is driving aggressively and cuts me off, I can either get angry, turn off and disregard my feelings, or I can acknowledge it without judgement. The latter helps release everyday annoyances and stress. I believe this is what it means by striving to not have any attachments in life, but I think a lot of practitioners fall into a mode of shutting off their feelings instead of living life. Perhaps a better way to think of it is that you have power over your attachments and that your attachments don’t have power over you. When you “bless” something you don’t like, it gives you time to replace the negative feeling. Shifting your perspective of receiving a gift is a powerful shift away from feeling like a victim. What is this aggressive driver trying to show me? Is it a challenge of my ability to be patient, or a sign that I need to be patient in other areas of my life?
The choice to find beauty in the most unexpected things is a power that goes beyond the conventional and superficial standards. Take breaks and observe your surroundings and feel gratitude. It is a way of being present in the moment. Beauty is in all things when you take the time to admire them.
Choosing a healthier lifestyle isn’t easy. I fell into an unhealthy lifestyle when I moved from Colorado. I began having chronic back pain. It thankfully led me back into a life of martial arts, qigong, meditation, and spiritual awareness. I have made better considerations on how I choose to spend my time viewing media. Our smart phones and social media have changed us. Our cell phones can be tiny narcissistic mirrors that encourages entitlement, intolerance, and a lack of respectful boundaries towards others. By using my smartphone less, I am using social media less. We have all experienced bad online etiquette, but do we really think about how is it affecting all of us? Some people make careers out of being internet trolls. Do our words really matter? Should we pause to think about what kind of energy we are putting out there for everyone to see? I think we should be concerned. There are some studies starting to confirm that words can affect your emotional health. This shouldn’t come to a shock as cyberbullying is now a thing, and how it is influencing teenage suicide. Think of a time when someone verbally said something that put a sting in you and remember how it affected you. Now imagine that emotional content put through a loudspeaker.
How about you? What has helped you? Please let me know down below.