Thursday, December 14, 2017

The grace of a winner

November 18, 2016 by  
Filed under Featured Posts, Free and Laughing

Jahwani Hinds, comforting an opponent from the losing team, teaches us all about winning with grace

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Jahwani Hinds, comforting an opponent from the losing team, teaches us all about winning with grace.

Saturday November 12, Wolmer’s, my high school in Jamaica, won a major schoolboy football competition (the real football … where feet actually move the ball, known as the “beautiful game” to 95% of the world, but to North Americans as “soccer”). It was a close match, the winning goal scored in the final 3 minutes. As you can imagine, the players, the Wolmer’s tribe in the stadium, and those tuned in from all over the world by television and the internet, burst into jubilation. The coaches sprinted onto the field, Usain Bolt-style, despite their girth. Entwined in ropes of joy, the players rolled on the ground, leaped and pranced.

But not Jahwani Hinds, the Wolmer’s captain. As he high-fived his teammates, there, cradled under his arm was a distraught player from the opposing team. Jahwani held him tight as he escorted him to his teammates and gently released him to his coaches.

The photo above of the “Jahwani moment” popped up the next day on my Facebook page, in between a deluge of posts about the US election, none of which offered any hope for the future of the world or mankind. Like many outside of the USA, I was shocked, angered, in disbelief at the result. I was still wending my way through the 5 stages of grief – denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. I knew I was close to acceptance, but wasn’t yet ready. I so wanted to wallow a little more, to fully grieve the delay of my dream of seeing the first female president of the United States. But I was getting there: in moments of acceptance of the result, I had started to see the silver lining, the hope, the knowing that “this too shall pass.” The photograph shook me out of my dark place and into the light.

The grace of the winner: Jahwani, an 18 year old young Jamaican man, who had just led his team to victory, focused on the welfare of the loser. Such compassion, presence of mind, presence of heart to do this for another who was suffering.

In that moment, I crossed to the other side, from internal darkness to light. I still don’t understand what happened in the US election, and like everyone, I really don’t know what will happen next and over the ensuing 4 years. What I do know is that I always have a choice in how I respond – with hate or with grace. And that choice is available to me whether I have won or lost. And really? Even if my side seems to have lost, if I respond with grace, then am I not a victor?

A few minute later, as if to validate my shift, I glanced at the television, and who do I see being interviewed by Oprah? Jimmy Carter, considered by some to be a terrible president, but who has post-presidency done amazing things to change people’s lives all over the world. The grace of the loser. Grace does not take sides.

So my task now to remain in this state of grace is first to guard my own energy field. I am trotting out my armory – Earth Wind & Fire music, puppy videos, Abraham Hicks meditations, Daily Word and Science of Mind readings, my laughter yoga practice, gratitude journaling, whatever I can find that’s positive and beautiful.

From this state of grace, I am able to see the points of light – young people peacefully protesting in the streets, a Million Women March being planned; 300 people turning up to escort a young black woman to class – she had experienced a racist incident whilst walking on her university campus; the young woman on a streetcar in Toronto who faced down a young man making racist threats to another man of a darker hue; my daughter who texted me to say “Mummy, as a family, we have to become more politically active.”

Does being in a state of grace mean that I do nothing? Not at all. First, “doing nothing” is sometimes good. At least I am not adding to the energy of anger and despair. Being in a state of grace is NOT inconsistent with taking action. Indeed, from this place one has clarity and conviction about what to do and how to make a real difference. And you start attracting things that support this – like this article that also popped up on my Facebook page: “25 Ways to be Politically Active

Thank you Jahwani Hinds. The future is bright with people like you in it. And there are many – at Wolmer’s and all over the world.

Comments

4 Responses to “The grace of a winner”
  1. Cecile Clayton says:

    Thanks for this uplifting blog, Marguerite. We need to recognise and hang onto the positives in these days of dashed hopes and disappointment.

  2. Wendy Chan says:

    Loved, loved , loved this article …yes I agree we all need to step out with our armor intact remembering that only LIGHT can dispel darkness . We can’t fight darkness with more darkness but only with Light . We each need to be a light .

  3. Marguerite Orane says:

    Thank you Wendy. You are so right. The worst feeling is hopelessness. When we recognise that there is always light, and that we can each be light, then hope is restored. I am always looking for the silver lining, because it is the light that is ever-present. It’s the darkness that’s temporary.

    Blessings in abundance

    Marguerite

  4. Marguerite Orane says:

    Thank you for commenting Cecile. The beautiful thing about looking for the positives, is that we get to a place where we see even more. I am very hopeful.

    Blessings in abundance

    Marguerite