Greece: The Ongoing Tragedy
It has been a while since I last wrote here; it feels important to write when I have got something to say indeed and not just write for the sake of it.
The recent wildfires in Greece evoked familiar feelings that seem to be dormant for a while and yet ready to come to the surface again as soon as another 'tragedy' or very difficult event happens.
Anger, sadness and despair are the main feelings that take turns in mine and possibly lots of people's hearts witnessing such loss (of people, properties) and natural environment).
It is understandable that in difficult moments like these people want to express (almost purge) their intense feelings, say their opinion, blame someone in an attempt to reconcile with the loss, pain, powerlessness and grief.
Other people take immediate action trying to help, make things better, relieve the pain by offering or doing something that will bring comfort to themselves and those directly affected.
What does not quite sit well with me is the mentality that I read between the lines of the messages that I have read.. name ly the 'victim mentality'.
The victim of the greek government, of the wild fires, of people who want to take advantage of that area and so on.
For me this is another symptom of greek people behaving like children who do want to grow up and take responsibility of their actions. Some, if not all, the houses that got burnt in the fires were initially built illegally, outside the legal urban planning and my understanding is that much later they were somehow recognised as legal and were incorporated within the urban planning of the area.
Illness 1: not following the law and not have consequences for that: building wherever one wants without consequences and then pay to get the properties legalised.
Since those houses were build in or next to forests, did the people who bought or build them asked for all the necessary precautionary anti fire measure to be taken? or they were waiting for a magical, last minute protection from the super power greek state? (which of course never happens).
Since I remember myself every summer there were many fires all over Greece due to high temperatures and strong winds (or arsons) resulting in people being killed and properties getting burned. One could say that Greece should have been a fire expert by now in summer fires given the extent of the loss every year. Unfortunately not.
Illness 2: prevention and forward thinking are almost unknown words to greeks.
I have been travelling to Switzerland, Austria and Germany the last week while all this palavra is taking place in Athens.
I have been witnessing quite organised (not perfect) states and cities were people have created safe, comfortable and not so strenuous environments where they can live enjoyable lives with growth and development.
On the contrary, it really hurts witnessing Greece and greek people always just trying to survive driven by a 'lacking of' mentality rather than expansion and abundance in co existence with an 'narcissistic arrogance' that 'we are untouchable' and if anything goes wrong 'someone else will save us the last minute'.
I am totally aware that this is a constructed way of being, a learned and coping strategy that might have served us in the past but clearly does not serve anyone anymore and due to its complexity it is hard to easily change.
The two illnesses above and many more can be summarised into one:
that greeks have turned their backs to themselves long time ago. They have stopped loving and looking after themselves and the environment they are living in a while now. Hence, they are magically waiting for solutions to appear similar to a child waiting from the parent to save it while it feels powerless and hopeless.
I have been a 'product' of that psychology/mentality and having brought myself to the other side I can now see clearly what is happening.
The road to adulthood is a difficult and challenging one which requires lots of lessons to be learned and integrated.
One has to sit with so many fears and pains, with all the daemons personal and collective, feel them, learn and resolve them.. (a huge humanity challenge all together to become our higher selves but come one Greece.. you can do it!)
One has also to learn that there are things that humans can control and things that can not control and take action or surrender appropriately.. In the former feeling empowered and in peace that one has done all they could about a given situation and in the latter one feeling in peace that there are part of something bigger that works for the higher good.
I recognise from an archetypal point of view that Greece has a quite challenging task.. holding the path of plain simplicity, easily turned into heaven (ancient Greece-ish), easily turned into chaos (recently).
Simple beauty of the sea, sun, nature, heart; a precious empty canvas that can contain everything and we are 'failing' to appreciate and honour it.
We are neglecting to preserve and cultivate it not just only for the benefits of our own 'little greek family' (faction is very common in Greece) but also for the service of the rest of the world; in a similar way that Peru shares her natural medicines with the rest of the world.
Similarly to the rain in the UK which endeavours to teach compassion and softness to quite a 'ruthless' population, fire in Greece might aim to teach us through anger and destruction the boundaries, the pride, the owning of strength, the tough self love, the truth which say 'learn and honour who you are and what you have got and love it, protect it, share it' as a good enough parent will always do for its children..
Love and peace to all affected.
May the next summers to be talking about different things..
With love and gratitude,
Ψυχοθεραπευτής, Transformational Coach και