Friday, September 9, 2016

Impact - Yup It Happens


There is indeed such a thing as "impact" in this world. Yes there is. We have to all admit it. You have an impact on others. Others have an impact on you. There is impact happening everywhere around us. Heck, there's even a word for it: "impact."  

noun -  "the job losses will have a major impact:" effect, influence, significance, meaning; consequences, repercussions, ramifications, reverberations.

So what does this look like, and why do so many people seem to have trouble with it?

Basically, our actions, our words, our non-verbal cues and even our neglect will have rippling effects upon the world around us. Our acts of kindness and love land upon another and then gently soothe and caress a soul. A harsh and violent act forced upon another will bring a sense of destruction and harm on a very real level.

However, there are the detractors to this idea. There are the highfalutin philosophers who say, "No one but me affects me." "What anyone thinks or says about me has nothing to do with me." "Don't take anything personally." "I am in complete charge of my life; I live at cause and not effect." I can grasp those ideals and see how these all can work perfectly ... IF YOU'RE JESUS!

Or if you are dead.

Let's get real folks. You can have the fancy philosophies, ideals and notions. And yes, you can choose how you respond to life, even in the face of negative actions and attacks. And you can do your best to create a giant mote around you, protecting you from those nasty and icky humans. You can do your best to bring your best foot (and mind) forward in the face of any hardships. This is indeed empowering on a certain level.

Expanding outward, you can also simply surrender to the fact that we are here on this awkward planet - as humans - all bumping into each other, bringing the rippling effects of the good, the bad and the ugly. And we can simply make that part of the dance. 

At this level - some outlandish designation called "physical reality' - we can admit that the impact is all around us.

  • The smash upon your head, courtesy of Maxwell's Silver Hammer, has its harsh result.
  • The shooting of an unarmed woman on the street has a rippling effect on her family and a community.
  • Kids playing with matches creating a large brush fire that takes out the homes and old photo albums of several families will create a stir.
  • The father who chooses to leave or is forced out of the life of a son or daughter will have its impact on the two young ones ... no matter how strong their minds "live at cause." 
Most recently, I couldn't help but notice a minor news story that came out of the Nevada desert where a 17-year-old girl was reported missing, helping to put some of the 70,000 attendees of the Burning Man event smack dab into a 9-plus hour traffic jam. She was OK. Though these open-minded folk may have had a choice to frame their experience, it can't be denied some of the 70,000 may have been impacted a bit.

Though I realize this may be challenging for some of the more skittish folk in our world to grasp or handle, the truth remains. We all have an impact on each other. It happens. It's OK. I think it's part of the reason we came here - to a physical world of duality, where bodies and cars and dance partners could maneuver amidst each others reality ... gracefully or not. It's in the grace where we are freed to recognize our brothers' and sisters' beauty; it's in the harsh attacks where we ultimately discover that we have lost our brothers and sisters ... and therefore ourselves.

I believe those who refuse to accept this reality are just afraid to take on the mighty (and scary) responsibility that confirms our actions do have real consequences. That can be too much weight to carry - especially those trying to escape the pain of what they have brought upon others and themselves. But even so, no matter how any of us try to escape it, the ominous, formidable and exacting responsibility exits.

Impact. Yup it happens. And yup, it's beautiful. 

James Anthony Ellis is a writer and producer hopefully causing positive vibrations around the world. He can be reached at

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