So tomorrow, all Singaporeans over the age of 21 go to the polls. For the first time in 50 years, every constituency is being contested, which means everyone who is old enough to vote gets the opportunity to do so.
This may not seem like a big deal to others around the world, but for us Singaporeans, it is. Because in all our general elections in the 50 years since we became a nation, no opposition party has been strong enough to contest the ruling party at every turn. Which meant that not every Singaporean who was old enough to vote got to vote, for the simple reason that the ruling party had unopposed victories over the majority of constituencies.
The wind of change is blowing, and it is steadily growing in strength. And, as expected, not everyone is thrilled.
In the past week, as I watched the rallies and read about the issues being debated and discussed, it has hit me time and time again how this political event runs parallel to our spiritual life.
The subjects of heated argument are always things that are near and dear to us – our homes, our money, our sense of self and security. The ruling party would have us believe that our world as we know it will turn topsy-turvy if the opposition takes over; and the opposition promises that they will make things better if given the chance.
I write this not to sway anyone in their political beliefs and/or loyalty; I write this to remind you, as well as myself, that it is when we are at our loudest and most emotional, when we are most convinced that we are right, that we should stop and look into the mirror that the universe holds out to us.
You will find that the reflection often shows up our innermost fears – our home, our money, our sense of self and security. These are issues of the root chakra, of survival.
As we grow and develop spiritually, we move on to face and learn from our fears regarding issues that are reflected in the higher chakras. But it does not mean that we have passed the root chakra phase and are, therefore, above it.
We grow in cycles. The kabbalistic tree of life teaches that when you finally climb to the topmost sephira, you are, in effect, merely at the bottom sephira of a higher level of consciousness.
So the wind of change is blowing.
Strong winds are never comfortable or romantic. They pick up dust, dirt, dead leaves; they mess up pretty hairdos; whip your hair into your face, grit into your eyes. They can blow things off the roof.
When we are caught in a gale, our instinct is to cling to something stable or familiar, to shut our eyes to keep dirt from getting in; to find shelter until it blows over. We hardly ever enjoy it while it’s blowing. But when it’s over, there’s lots to see and do.
This is what is happening for all on the path of light now. There’s a wind of change blowing, and it is steadily growing in strength.
It will, without a doubt, bring up lots of fear and grime. It won’t be the most enjoyable or comfortable thing to experience. But how you choose to go through the experience, what you choose to make of it, is within your power. You are the power.
It does not matter whether you choose to go on as you did before the gale; or whether you choose to rebuild and create new things. What matters is you decide what is right (but not at the expense of others), that you are willing to learn from the outcome of your own decision and take responsibility for it, and that you grow stronger in God’s light and truth in the process.