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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Critical Connections

Dec 01, 2022 03:59PM ● By Shannon Mc Kenzie

I’m really delayed with my publisher’s letter this month. December is the “Uplifting Humanity” issue, and my intention was to write an uplifting letter. The deaths of three University of Virginia football players by a fellow student and the stabbing deaths of four students at the University of Idaho by an unknown person has thrown me into a funk and I haven’t climbed out yet. 

Both incidents hit close to home. Devin Chandler, one of the three UVA students, spent his senior year at Hough High School in Huntersville—the same high school my son attends now. I’m from Idaho originally; my mom, my brother and many of my friends attended the University of Idaho, and one of the victims, Madison Mogen, is from my hometown, Coeur d’Alene.

This month’s feature article, Transforming Our World: Working Together for Meaningful Change, begins, “With all the chaos occurring in the world today, it is challenging to remain centered and not feel overwhelmed.” It acknowledges that we have a new world to navigate and proposes that we need a new psychology to do so. Toward the end of the article, a suggestion from Margaret Wheatley, best-selling author and community organizer, to “foster critical connections” and to “connect with kindred spirits” resonated with me, as this is something I’ve felt compelled to do lately. We all need supportive people in our lives and to be supportive of others. I’ve realized the importance of this lately. 

Here's an ask of support: when you read this, please send comfort, healing and peace to the families, friends and acquaintances of University of Virginia students Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr. and D’Sean Perry and University of Idaho students Ethan Chapin, Xana Kernodle, Madison Mogen and Kaylee Goncalves. (Unfortunately since going to print, the Colorado Springs nightclub and Chesapeake Walmart shootings took place, as well as a number of less media-covered shootings around the country - equating to hundreds, possibly thousands more people needing comfort, healing and peace). 

Wishing you deeper connections in 2023,


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