Did you know about the Veterans Day Moment of Silence Act? It was enacted to encourage two minutes of silence nationwide on each Veterans Day in honor of their service. This Act is definitely an outlier, for it was unanimously passed by both houses of Congress! President Barack Obama signed it into law on Oct. 7, just a year ago.
On Saturday we remember all the people who fought in the many wars of our history; this year for the first time, Military Families are included with Veterans. For the past seven years, InsightLA trained staff at area VA hospitals in mindfulness and self-compassion practices designed especially for our Veterans. The mission was to create a kinder atmosphere in the hospitals, and to offer our Veterans powerful mindfulness-based practices for healing their trauma and isolation. We care.
No matter what you or I think about war, or who goes to fight our wars, or what defines honorable service, we can understand the longing to live for a purpose bigger than just ourselves. America’s warriors are volunteers. They choose to put their lives on the line to serve and protect others – us! Wherever we stand on the increasingly divided political spectrum, we can separate our passionate, wildly divergent beliefs from simple respect for selfless service, personal sacrifice and love of country. Our mutual respect is an honorable path to peace.
I love this Moment of Silence Act — two whole minutes of national mindfulness! Two full minutes of being together in silence as a nation to appreciate our shared humanity and offer respect. Two minutes a year…imagine if we could extend this to two minutes a day. When we practice mindfulness together, little by little we realize that we and our beautiful country, our magnificent blue planet, and our magical, heart-breaking world are not separate. With more and more minutes of loving awareness, we begin to see how all our diversities are part of a larger whole, and feel the stunning unity connecting us in all our multiplicities. We, too, can inspire ourselves to live with the intention to serve, protect, and take care of life – life in the form of you, of me, of all beings everywhere, without exception!