History repeats itself. This happens in many aspects of our lives. When it does, our tendency is to despair at the fact that we’ve been here before and had hoped never to be here again. It’s frustrating, discouraging, heartbreaking. Feelings of judgment, failure, and powerlessness bubble up. We feel weary. We feel so many things. .
Let’s remember this. Our growth - as individuals and collectively as a society of humans - does not happen in a linear way. Rather, we grow in a winding upward spiral, revisiting the same work again and again, with the opportunity to go deeper, learn more, and create more profound change each time. .
Our work is to show up each time with greater wisdom, deepen our awareness, notice patterns, and shine a light on what we see. This requires a great deal of patience, as we often find ourselves noticing a pattern many times before we are actually able to release and replace it. It is easy during this time to get stuck in the feelings of desperation and despair. We wonder how it is possible that we are in this place again, and we are blind to the growth has occurred.
Looking closely, though, we realize that progress has, in fact, been made. We have arrived at this place, which is familiar in so many ways, with different knowledge, deeper awareness, and more courage. We are able to name what we see. Our strong intention combined with the memory of what has come before pave the way for real change. .
It isn’t easy, and it isn’t fast, but with persistence, curiosity, and a boatload of compassion (for ourselves and others), we do make progress. And one day, after going up and around the spiral again and again, we look back and notice not that we have returned to the exact same place, but rather that the view is just different enough this time around for us to realize how far we’ve come.
Evolution is a slow process, my friends. It spans lifetimes. When you come to these points where history is repeating itself, in your own life or on the world stage, know this: though the work is not complete, the work of the past has not been done in vain. Look for the bright spots, the progress, (continued in comments)...