A common space for harmonic peacemakers
"When we bear witness, when we become the situation -- homelessness, poverty, illness, violence, death -- the right action arises by itself. We don't have to worry about what to do. We don't have to figure out solutions ahead of time. Peacemaking is the functioning of bearing witness. Once we listen with our entire body and mind, loving action arises."
~ Bernie Glassman, BEARING WITNESS: A ZEN MASTER'S LESSONS IN MAKING PEACE (1999)
i do not know what he means by 'when we bear witness, when we become the situation...' Is it like jehova witnessing? 'Once we listen with our entire body and mind.... (to what) just asking.
My contact person responds:
Great question. For most of us, Eva, this is genuine commitment to aspiration toward profound alignment with the person or situation. We seek to truly empathize with all the factors involved, not through an intellectual or emotional sympathy but by actually witnessing from an integrative yet objective standpoint. I say it's an aspiration because it's a rare seeker who can maintain this "listening with the entire body and mind" while "bearing witness" and/or "becoming the situation." Each of us, however, can practice withdrawing our projections and evaluations, to the degree that we're able, so we can more compassionately enter the situation with peaceful and useful intent. The multi-cultural writer Paul Brunton, talks of the Witness as an advanced stage of spiritual development. And as Brunton doesn't mention Jehova witnessing and I've had no real exposure, I cannot speak of it.
.. thank you Eva for your reply.. i understand a bit better.