Now more than ever, it seems the good in life is being overshadowed by the loudest among us. I am continually shocked by the growing, rageful influence of the world's loudest carnival barkers. Their noise can be deafening; their message a sucker punch to the rest of us seeking a better life for our children and for future generations. Sometimes, in my attempt to salve the wound caused by those who would send us back in time with their hateful rhetoric, I seek humour to offset the negativity of our current circumstances. Other times, I am moved by good old fashioned sentimentality; by the power of a beautiful piece of music.
This song by Alicia Keys is originally about romantic love. But to me it also speaks to another kind of love - the love we seek for ourselves as individuals through our connection to the greater collective. This connection keeps the beat of our drum moving us forward to a time when we will love ourselves so much that we won't seek to fill the void with hatred and violence. We will treat our brothers and sisters in this beautiful human family as equals.
This song reminds me that even though the world might be telling us one story, we can effect great change by reflecting back another. Whether we wear our hearts on our sleeves or a powerful message on a dress calling for the removal of a hateful flag; whether we share a meal with the homeless among us or welcome displaced refugees to our shores; whether we insist upon equal pay for equal work or demand answers on behalf of countless indigenous women who should never have gone missing - this song reminds me not to be overwhelmed. It reminds me to know what I know right down to my Ukrainian bones: That when we work together and allow our choices to be motivated from a place of love, no one can stop us.
My friends, join the chorus and dance to the beat of the glorious Ms. Keys.
Yours in the quest for bliss,
The Happiness Detective