Jessica, a volunteer that hosts SCSA's Women's Support meetings and a licensed social worker, penned this just prior to finding SCSA.
Fear: Darkness vs. Light
The darkness appears to have a strong hold, but does it really? If in fact light can eliminate darkness by shedding its rays into it, that means the darkness has only the power we give it by ignoring it and not addressing it.
Fear allows it to continue. The dangers are real, but fear is the real issue that allows the darkness to continue its reign of terror. It’s the underlying foundation beneath judgment, silence, and shame.
People fear what they lack understanding of, because it is unknown territory. People fear the unknown more than anything and usually try to stick with things they know, because it is comfortable and predictable with a safety net.
It takes courage to combat fear—sometimes great courage—and it is not easy. There comes a point, though, where it becomes essential to face those fears and conquer them, or else they will conquer us.
The darkness does not lurk in the shadows like we think. It is a part of each and every one of us, as is the light. You can’t have darkness without light or light without darkness, yet you must be able to understand the difference between the two.
How many of us truly have reached the level of growth equivalent to self-actualization and know our true capabilities? We are all at different levels of growth and development internally; age is just a superficial number.
The light and dark coexist within us and react on the desires in our hearts, which then lead us down the path we decide to take. You can run, but you can’t hide from the darkness or the light; they are both part of us as humans, and it’s up to us to decide which path we want to choose for ourselves.
Everything depends on how you look at things and whether you feed the light within you or the darkness within you. That is a choice we all make for ourselves, and no one can make decisions for us.
Things happen outside ourselves, but our responses and reactions to those things are still choices we make for ourselves, and we are responsible for our own destiny and outcome. No one truly gets away with anything, because God knows everything. A lot of the things we tell ourselves are lies based on fear, and we believe those things to be true.
When we listen to those self-defeating lies, they turn into thoughts that underlie our actions. Our actions lead us down the path based on not only what we think, but also the things we act upon. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. What we think we are we become, because we work toward it whether we realize it or not.
Secrecy, shame, guilt, and judgment are all areas that hide this darkness and allow it to perpetuate and collect more and more victims. Exposure is the only real way to intervene, since you can’t address a concern that is not brought to light if you don’t know that the problem exists. Perpetrators prey on naivety and innocence and use that to their advantage to manipulate the situation.
Can you imagine a world of combined efforts to stop the darkness that appears to prevail among us now by shining the light into the darkness? Where could the darkness hide? There is a power in numbers, and there are far fewer bad apples than good ones. Through exposure, give them no place to hide and remove them so they can’t perpetrate further damage.
The underlying dynamic needs to be addressed in order to solve the problem, because it’s the root, and everything else is merely a bandage that won’t cure but only temporarily treat the aftermath of the problem. It does not resolve the problem itself, and we need more permanent solutions. If you want to defeat the darkness as a problem, address it at the source or the root.
Light is HOPE, where even a mustard seed of it can develop into more. Can you shine brightly enough to give hope to someone who knows only darkness? Can you inspire, encourage, and empower persons in darkness to understand that they, too, can shine and have hope?
You can be the beacon of light that leads people out of the dark tunnel they are in and into the light of hope. Without judgment, lend a hand and lift people out of the darkness, because darkness may be the only thing they know.
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