Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.
-Where the Mind is Without Fear by Rabindranath Tagore from How Lovely the Ruins
The first thing crisis does is reveal what was already broken–in our systems of community care, in our economic structure but also in our relationships. These “narrow domestic walls” we have built to give us a sense that we are separate, that our fates are somehow not interconnected has left us exhausted in our striving and stretching “towards perfection.”
Today is a good day to think about our connection. And practice a wild sense of hope and give something to support a neighbor in need. Our walls are not so thin and we are very much connected. If you have a little to give, there are many local food pantries to send a gift to, there are utility relief funds for neighbors strained to pay their bills without income.
To Find a Steady Center is a daily poem and meditation to offer a short, good word to those who are anxious, fearful or lonely and who might need a gentle word of hope, encouragement or perspective during social distancing.