I grew up frequently hearing the question “whose side are you on, anyway?”
The question was most often framed humorously, though there could be undercurrents of sarcasm and even recoil for sure.
As I grew into a consciously awakening adult, I began to answer the inquiry with some version of “there are no sides to take.”
Well, sort of.
I wanted that to be true. I was growing into a preliminary awareness of the perception that all is one. To live that out I sought to end any type of warring with others. I wanted to give others their freedom, while also maintaining my own. I knew there would always be differences of opinion, and yet I did not want those differences to lead to rigid divisiveness.
I still want that.
It has become more challenging in these blaring and increasingly chaotic times.
I find myself with some frequency observing other people’s behaviors, especially those that directly affect me, and in my awareness, I hear that question:
Whose side are you on, anyway?
As I continue to surf the waves of this monumental time there is stunning clarity regarding where people dwell in consciousness, and how they choose to show up in manifest reality. At first it seemed to me that divisiveness is at an all time high. Upon further reflection I realized that it is not so much that there is more division. It is that the divisions that were submerged in the shadows have been brought forward onto the surface. What was barely hidden is now being clearly seen.
Lines are being drawn in the sand. Positions are being taken. Ideologies are being identified with. There are sides to be taken, whether we want to or not. Tribe against tribe. Race against race. Country against country, and county against county.
Truth against lies.
That is what is foundational for me.
While what we call truth is so often perceptual and highly fluid the Truth that I am seeking to live by remains all is one. I know down deep that every single choice we make affects the whole. Every thought, feeling, word, action has consequences for all living beings. I also profoundly believe that all of this divisiveness and warring is in service of a return to a state of actualized oneness. As messy as it looks and feels, something better is rising from below the unconsciousness of shadow shrouding. As much as I do not want to take sides, I find that in duality I must side with what I discern to be true. I must side with what I determine to be for the greater good. I must face directly what is relative in service of calling forth the absolute. And calling forth includes calling out.
I sometimes ponder what people a hundred years from now will say about we who are living now. What the narrative will be about our choices. How our divisions, clashes, chaos, and violence will be reported. I wonder how many generations will fault us for the world we handed them.
How many will ask “whose side were you on, anyway?”
I want to be able to anticipate that future question by how I live in the here and now. I want to get up each day and to decide to witness other’s choices with an increasingly awakened awareness. I will not pretend to agree with the choices. I will allow an internal emotional flow regarding how I see and feel those choices affecting the whole. And I will not fall prey to dehumanizing or going to war with others that I do not agree with. I will not pretend there are no temporary sides. Nor will I set up camp in one.
I have seen aspects of people I thought I knew that have deeply surprised and yes, disturbed me. These times have provided an internal gymnasium that has strengthened my being and most certainly my resolve. While I have frequently not respected choices that have been made, I have also maintained my respect for the right to choose. I have seen more clearly than ever the sides of truth and lies. The more closely I look the better sense I get that that they are aspects of an illogical and still unfolding new reality. Instead of locking into either/or, I breathe into the possibility of a mysterious both/and.
Is it possible that truth and lies can co-exist in an open and awakening heart?
I still waltz with the question.
For now, I watch the side you seem to be on, and I choose how I will relate to your current position. I commit myself to coming out of this time of distancing less divided. Less dismissive. More open and inclusive. More determined to side with the truth amid the lies. More aware that every choice I make is consequential to all.
And if by chance someone should ask me “whose side are you on, anyway?” I will honestly and wholeheartedly be able to say, “your side, my dear.” "Your side."
I am siding with the truth of you.