Natalie Goldberg Deck: Card #12
I’m working through the Natalie Goldberg deck of writing subjects. Each card in this world-renowned author and zen teacher’s Deck contains a writing topic on one side and a short lesson on the reverse, delivered in Natalie’s honest, heartfelt urgency. “This is my wish for you:” she says. “[T]hat you take these cards, grab the topic on one side and write, write, write . . . Remember no good or bad. Just words on the page.”
Where do I find injustice? What do I feel about it?
I’m trying to resist the low-hanging fruit: police brutality, trans-shaming, the despicable state of elder care in our country, the fact that battered women can get a restraining order but the Supreme Court says the police don’t have to enforce it, or the fact that sending our kids to school these days is no guarantee they won’t come home in a coffin.
Where to start? I mean, seriously, where would you even start to write about “where do I find injustice?”
Whenever I’m this riled up, though, I try to come home to my body. And in doing so, I try to remember that the only thing I can control is my own thinking, in my own life. So where is it there?
Let’s try this exercise again. With my feet pressing into the ground, and the back of my heart softened into a deeper listening place, where do I find injustice? What do I feel about it?
I can find it in my own mouth.
I can’t count the times I say things with a little sarcastic edge, or the times I make a joke at someone’s expense — specifically because that person isn’t in the room. It feels inconsequential (almost nonexistent) when I’m doing it. But if they overheard, they would invariably feel so hurt. But it’s such a habit, now. I don’t even know how to break out of this without coming off goody two shoes. I’m just being ‘one of the guys,’ right?
No. This is injustice because I’m picking on someone who can’t defend themselves. They’re not even in the room, so I win every time. (except karmically, but that’s another blogpost. :-)
How do I feel about it? In the moment, I feel superior, secure in my place in life, and I feel buddies with…