In the show Lovecraft Country, Christina Braithwhite tells Atticus Freeman that magic is more than an incantation; one needs "energy, intention, and a body." Change requires the same elements. Change is not a slogan. By the use of energy, intention, and our labor, we can accomplish genuine transformation. We expend energy trying to change people's hearts and minds. We try and convince them to see our point of view. We also put a lot of energy into changing ourselves. It seems to be an uphill battle at times. Defining the problem and defining success is essential.
An intention is a goal we have in mind. Whether it be a new job or getting healthy, or social change, intentions often have unintended consequences. Does this mean that we should not set goals? No. I am trying out having open intentions giving myself more wiggle room. I listened to an excellent talk with Minda Harts and Lily Zheng, which illustrated how good intentions could have unintended outcomes. The conversation is on YouTube and is called Secure The Seat Live 10/12 if you are interested. Minda shared her good intentions for inclusivity, which unintentionally but people in a difficult situation. Open intention means to center what you are trying to accomplish outside of yourself.
For example, I intend to make healthy choices. My intention was for myself and to be a model for my children. I try to have balance and enjoy all foods in moderation. My girlfriend and I were having virtual teatime and, she insisted we treat ourselves. A local pastry shop had its grand opening in a new location, so I figured I would kill two birds with one stone. I apparently have done too good a job stressing healthy choices because my youngest took the pastries as a form of betrayal. I had failed to provide context about my decision. I know that I often beat myself up about some of my choices. That negative energy impacts how my intentions are received.
It is a struggle between making progress and forcing progress. If I set an open intention and pay attention to where I devote my energy, I can often succeed simply by allowing the success to flow. I will use my art as an example. If I want something to come out exactly as I picture it, I am setting myself up for frustration. If I expand my intention to create and allow the art to flow through me, I end up much happier and learn from the process, which encourages me to continue to make more art. My friend commented that the things we wanted in our life, we may not see in our lifetime. I noted that at this very moment, we were living the change we wanted to see. We were two friends, enjoying each other's company as human beings, seeing the divine in each other. When intention, energy, and bodies align, the result is magical. Namaste