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Words I've Found From Israel/Palestine

What words can there be? What can I say - what can I share of these surreal days? Of nights of war spent making love with my beloved, friend, brother - healing painful conflict patterns existing between us for years. Of a friend, a deeply gentle heart, I knew in EcoME - murdered. “But, which nationality was he?” you ask. Do you assume one or the other? The answer, given only to honor him and not to feed this disgusting circle of moral high-grounding is: Palestinian, living in the West Bank shot by armed Israeli settlers. Of mornings spent sitting around, taking turns breaking down and building up again. One crying the fear and stress, met by the rest, and then the ball passed again. Of the absolutely enormous defense mechanism my system entered into 5 minutes after I bought a ticket for a flight leaving 24 hrs later. (yes, I’ve left…). A mechanism of deep guilt, images suddenly flying to my mind of rockets flying and loved ones being killed. A sense that I am abandoning them. That I am abandoning the land. The choice between the safety of staying together and the safety of leaving to “safer” ground. A response so huge, so filled with love and sense of belonging & duty. A response so huge - it was instantly clear to me that it is a collective karmic imprint - feelings and experiences of generations. Of the sound of planes, taking off & returning to the base near my home, overhead all day and night. My thoughts of the young men flying these planes as they are tasked with leveling an entire population. My thoughts of an entire population leveled. Of our brain on stress and under threat - so entirely fascinating to see the range of responses in my friends, clients, myself. Of the terror - the thoughts that my personal safety in this land, at this current moment, might very much be dependent on the mass bombing of millions of people. Of my dear brother serving in a reserve combat unit. Of the tenuous conversations between my incredible community of EcoME folks - the Palestinians, Israelis and internationals who experienced the magic and pain of living and working together in the desert for 7 years. Of another dear brother, courageous enough to raise his voice and say the thing no one is supposed to say now in Israeli society, questioning the unquestionable: the taken-for granted-ness holiness of the army. Of my friends and clients experiencing acute trauma and shut down after hearing, seeing, and being right next to fallen missiles. Of the different parts of me: The one that wants this to stop, for things to go back to “normal,” for this to “quiet down” quickly. Of the one that actually wants the escalation, because this “normal” cannot continue. We’ve known that for years and years. And maybe now - finally - if this continues… the camel’s back will be broken and something new will emerge. Of the one that knows, more than anything, that this is a piece in the upheaval. That these are the shifts happening at the end of this civilization. Shifts that many of us have been preparing for, that we are now ready to meet and feel, all the way through to the bottom. This is the trauma work, the relational work, the conflict work, the spiritual work, the generational work. The connecting to vision and land we have been doing to be able to contain all of these pieces, to feel through the depths of the horror and the helplessness and the hate To finally bring this thousands of year long era of war to its end. Of the one that says, “Can I even say this lofty shit when millions of people are in horror for their and their loved ones lives...When most are in acute survival mode, activated to defend themselves and their people against real threats to their living?” And here I am, fleeing with thousands of others lucky enough to have that as an option. Here I am a privileged refugee - resourced, and capacious, a holder of 2 passports, leaving in physically easeful conditions, fairly certain that I will make it out, (tho I didn’t trust it until the plane started rolling) a luxury 99% of the world’s 35.3 million refugees in no way have. And yet, a refugee none the less…. Am I exaggerating? See, my mind can go into comparing the situation. I am not feeling genocide in Sudan. I am not a Gazan unsure if the Egyptians will open a humanitarian corridor. I am a middle class American Ashkenazi Israeli trained in trauma healing, feminine wisdom, and somatics - working in realms only a very small number of people on this earth have the time, space, resources, personal capacity to engage in. But, then I remember that this kind of comparing - “my trauma/my suffering/my pain isn’t as bad as yours” - is in and of itself a trauma response. My heart, my womb, my consciousness is big enough to contain all of these truths.

With love, EKL

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