I know I usually write about something that is more personal, about our everyday lives, but I feel I have to reference what has just happened – it feels personal to me!
I spent most of the last week obsessively following the news on the American elections. It felt like the outcome of that election would be an important indicator of future possibilities: either more tendency towards empty rhetoric, a lack of fundamental values, and self-centred behaviour; or a revitalisation of decency, working together to improve things, and a thought-through approach to dealing with problems.
Halleluiah!! Despite Trump’s ability to stir up the worst in people and convince them that his ‘alternate facts’ were true, we have a new President-Elect. And Biden may not be an Obama, but he is an elder statesman who will bring some common sense, experience, and a strong team to restore some order in American politics, not to mention the world.
It won’t be straightforward, and he’s walking into a really difficult situation, with a lot to deal with, but for me, this result is a hopeful sign. Many people may still be convinced by sound bites, superficialities, and what they want to hear, but more people in the USA have decided to come out and say that enough is enough.
Some years ago, I took some time to research the descriptions of era changes – the big shifts that happen in societies and cultures. The common theme of signs that an era change was happening was that you begin to see more of the worst behaviour of the old era, with small examples of how the new era could be beginning to appear.
The real shift begins when the new era examples start to take more hold, and the old era behaviour begins to lose ground. This can be in politics, our attitude to our environment, the way we work, or our behaviour with each other.
I’ve always been interested in the bigger picture, and I believe we have been progressing towards a new era in many of these areas over the last decades, slowly but surely, despite the obvious worst of the old behaviours that have also been happening.
Joe Biden’s election gives me renewed optimism that we’re genuinely shifting, and encourages me to continue to do what I can to further the cause of a new era based on fundamental values of compassion, kindness, honesty, thoughtfulness, applied to the way we are with each other, the way things are done and the way we are in our world.
Let’s all build on this hopeful sign, and help- strengthen a new era in our world…