In the aftermath of the distressing shock of the presidential election results, many good-hearted people have been struggling to sort out our responses. We have fears and anxieties about how we and those we care about will be impacted. We anguish about what cherished policies and permissions could be on the precipice of destruction. Our minds flow into catastrophe thinking, with good reason.
I've noticed several types of responses that I can now observe as coming from different categories I'd call energy holding patterns.
We all hold energy and use power in specific ways. And it's possible that we may float from one type to another at various times when engaged in working out emotions, beliefs, strategies and actions. Let me explain how I'm thinking about this.
The Haters, Bullies, and Violence-Prone
This is the energy holding pattern of being unable to sit with difficult emotions and complex intellectual problems. So the response to being challenged is to acting out against a perceived threat, even when the threat is not based in fact, or is simply imagined. Both this pattern and the next one are quite Earth-bound -- meaning, they are looking at the immediate situation, the reality on the ground where the problem is taking place. This energy pattern can be mired in the Shadow without knowing or caring about such a thing.
This energy holding pattern has a lighter side, too, which can alternate between being self-absorbed but well-intentioned then self-righteous, judgmental and prone to the micro aggressions of those who are unaware of their privilege.
The Social Justice Activists
This is the energy holding pattern of needing to take action by almost any means necessary when confronted with a perceived injustice. Like the pattern above, it is almost a stimulus | response kind of dynamic. Expressions of dissatisfaction must be made, voices of protest must be heard, mostly peaceful but mass disruption of the status quo must be carried out.
In addition to being an Earth energy pattern, there is also something of Fire energy here too -- a need be in active resistance or advocacy, often mixing both in ways that on-lookers find confusing or unproductive. This energy pattern may wrestle with the Shadow without integrating it into their ways of being, for it can be messy, inefficient, and distracting to do so.
The Spiritual Warriors
This is an Air energy pattern, a seeking of metaphysical explanations and remedies such as soul plans and karma. This energy holding pattern is a kind of intellectualized approach to transformation of heart and mind, based on principles of revealed universal spiritual truths and connection with aspects of higher self and higher power.
The dynamic here is one that strives to redefine or more deeply explore the problem's intertwining causes in order to respond with more effective strategies for personal and cultural empowerment.
But this Air is tinged with Fire at times in the forcefulness of expression that emanates from a sense of urgency in the need to speak truth to power. This energy pattern can get overly caught up in digging into their personal and societal Shadow, wanting to mine the understanding that fuels transformation.
This is an Water energy pattern, and I would include the various types of Healers here as well. This energy holding pattern brings the balm of love and forgiveness through acts of prayer and hopeful optimism to bear on other energy holders, in order to heal wounds and promote the values of kindness, generosity, tolerance and understanding that binds a society together.
These energy holders want everyone to feel good about themselves, be pleasant to each other, and avoid verbal and physical conflicts.
This energy pattern knows about the Shadow but finds it dangerous, distressing, and disempowering to deal with it. So the focus of this type of energy holder is to maintain a positive outlook and develop the magicks of manifesting harmony.
The Bodhisattvas and Spirit Guides
This is an energy pattern I would say is shared by the enlightened individuals who choose to try to elevate humanity's consciousness and sensitivity, and the non-corporeal spirit guides that so many of us call on for comfort, advice and protection.
Essentially, this is the dynamic of not sweating the small stuff, and perceiving most human concerns as the small stuff when viewed in the context of the timelessness of the Great Mysteries. These energy holders are mostly dispassionate and removed from the mundane fray of things like politics and society's many "isms".
But the bodhisattvas will step into Air energy to impart wisdom and the spirit guides will take on Fire energy to shield humans from danger when doing so doesn't interfere with karmic lessons.
Now, there is a complex social transformation going on that is bigger than the election results but with them at the center of it right now. It is helpful to recognize what it is more explicitly, and within the light of the concept of energy patterns.
Among those who feel relatively safe in their own social, ethnic, religious, cis-gender, class, and/or financial status, there is natural disappointment and perhaps anger when government and other powers that be appear to negate a right, privilege, tradition or norm that we have fought hard for or have come to take for granted.
This is followed by a kind of self-protective resignation to wanting to be open-minded. Nothing wrong with that, and it may be admirable to try putting on a happy face and keeping a positive outlook when it's too hard to "go there" into the shadow of deeper unacknowledged pain.
But among those who already feel marginalized by the safe mainstream in some way -- whether by race, immigrant or LGBTQ status, spiritual practices, poverty, and barriers to education and healthcare -- the call to be open-minded and to have faith or think positive is an invalidation of their daily lived experience. It is a direct message that their concerns and complaints don't matter.
In short, it is a pouring of salt and vinegar into the already festering wounds. This is a classic clash of Earth-bound and Water energy holders.
Then there is the panic level anxiety for the real and present danger to personal safety that has been given license and even encouraged by elective support. The reason for these fears and dangers are not imagined. They have been clearly spelled out, tweeted, defended, and enacted already and with growing intensity in all sectors of society and at all age levels.
People are being Othered and made scapegoats, and then targeted, insulted, threatened and attacked for the abhorred otherness.
It is not paranoia or despair, hopelessness or anger that calls this out for what it is -- an echo of Niemöller's warning. It is the Earth-Fire and Air-Fire energies of the Activists and Spiritual Warriors.