Why You Need to Get Over Your PTES – Post Traumatic Election Syndrome

Justin Kaliszewski
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Aristotle once said, “Societies get the leaders they deserve.”
 
We seem persistent in our fervent hope in the system’s ability to right the course our planet is on, perhaps because the challenges that face us feel way too big for us.
 
Nothing could be further from the truth. You are powerful beyond measure – you need only remember this truth.
 
Feeling hopeless, angry, or lost? Good. Because beneath these feelings lies the potential for action. It’s time to get to work.
 
Climate change. Inequality. Conflict over contrived differences . . . nothing is beyond our own creative capacity to change for the better.
 
The electoral system has convinced us otherwise. It’s sneaky . . .
 
“Oh, if only a President would solve this problem for me so that I might continue along the path of my pleasant monotony . . . ”
 
Sorry, citizens. Get real, yogis.
 

Our lives are not determined by what others do. Our lives are determined by what we do.

 
Survival – self-perpetuation at all costs – is the hard-wired imperative of any system.
 
This year, I tried my best to discourage hope in the American electoral system.
 
Why? Because our persistence in referring to this system as ‘democratic’ in the face of a lopsided electoral college borders on lunacy. Our system isn’t ‘broken’ – in fact, it’s doing its job of rule by separation masterfully.
 
The U.S. has become an Oligarchy.
 
I’m not suggesting we try to fix it. I’m suggesting that we accept it. And then scrap it.
 
What would that look like? I wonder . . .
 

As Einstein stated, “No problem can be solved by the level of consciousness that created it.”

 
Russell Brand suggests that we have the power literally at our fingertips for actual representative democracy. What does this mean?
 
One vote per citizen on everything from approving the city budget to whether or not we go to war with Russia using simple, existing technology similar to how we currently select the next American Idol . . .
 

 
I’m not saying this approach is right, or that we should. What I am saying is that there are options. That and that I’m not trying to fight – violence isn’t the answer, and who would we fight anyway?
 
Systems are faceless for a reason. Lashing out against a person – even a President – does nothing to loosen the stranglehold held by the system.
 
What we can do is stop playing along with it.
 

You are powerful beyond measure – you need only remember this truth.

 
Start taking responsibility, and in so doing take back the creative role of the authorship of our lives. Grow your own veggies, eat less beef (it takes 660 gallons of water to produce 1 burger!), and make personal commitments to sustainability like consuming less plastic and paper.
 
Donald Trump is the President Elect of the United States of America.
 
Get over it.
 
Our lives are not determined by what others do. Our lives are determined by what we do.
 
Remember it.
 
The way we handle ourselves as citizens has nothing to do with our purported leaders. If he doesn’t represent you, good. If we’re ever going to change anything, we will need more of the mainstream to actively take a stand.
 
We’ve all spent far too long waiting for the world to change, playing along, hoping a leader will come along to bring us out of this phenomenal mess we’ve made.
 
But, as Einstein stated, “No problem can be solved by the level of consciousness that created it.”
 
Both Donald and Hillary are figureheads created by the conditions around us – dire conditions that now require us to lead ourselves.
 
These conditions include the atrocities committed against protesters over the North Dakota pipeline; a faltering medical system; and millions of people worldwide dying from pollution, starvation, and warfare.
 

Just as the forest needs the fire, sharp conditions have the power to propel us to great change.

 
The greatest challenge of today is not who is – or is not – President, but how to heal our environment.
 
That solution must come from us . . . inconveniently, each of us. As in every single one of you reading this, and me writing especially . . .
 
Either way, unless you intend to do something else about it, do us all a favor and at least quit crying about it.
 
Just as the forest needs the fire, sharp conditions have the power to propel us to great change. Things are going to get worse before they get better, yogis . . . much harder before they get easier, Americans . . .
 
I for one wouldn’t have it any other way – at the end of the day, destruction is an act of creation.
 
Get ready to love thy neighbor – and thy enemy for that matter – as we welcome the reign of The Donald.
 

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Justin Kaliszewski

Justin is a reformed meat-head and former amateur cage fighter. He brings a lifetime of travel and world's worth of experience in battling the ego to the mat. An avid student, artist, and treasure hunter; he infuses a creativity and perseverance into his teachings, along with a distinct blend of humor and wisdom that redefines what it means to be an Outlaw and a yogi. A nomad at heart, you can also catch him at the Outlaw Yoga Littleton, CO studio and as he tours the country teaching Outlaw Yoga in studios, at festivals, and in guest appearances.

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