Answers from A Matriarch to 5 Soul Burning Questions
For Teen Vogue Magazine.
By Tia Tara Popular
Hello, I am your fairy godmother. Tia Tara they call me. So why am I writing to you? Well, let’s keep it simple: I love you very much. You’re so brave; you’re facing the world today. Frankly, I just want to be here for you.
Just before the pandemic hit in 2019, I surveyed about 100 teens (age 16-18) about their needs and what they’d like to tell adults. The top answer was: “Could you adults stop putting us under so much pressure?” They wrote about the unrelenting push to succeed, pollution and environmental destruction, and bullying. Now, just a few years later, our world has exploded and these problems were a cakewalk then compared to what you face today.
It’s hard to imagine being 16 and not being kissed for two years! You’ve to fight for your rights to breathe clean air. Now you have to fight for your right to found a family when and only as you wish. You’ve to fight for voting rights and not to be reproductively enslaved. You’ve to be careful of school and public shootings in USA with automatic weapon ownership! It sounds like I’m exaggerating! But no. It’s true. You must face older generations who have never even read a single article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. There is much much more, but why should I detail what you already know?
After writing some books, reaching out with practical skills as a teacher, with time the warrior in me grew into a matriarch. So, I decided I could start some inspiration as your green goddess godmother. While I can’t ever take away the hardships you endure, I can do my best to answer the far-reaching questions I’ve received from students in many classrooms, in my quest to understand and support you.
So here they are the five most common questions I’m asked by teens and young adults….
#1. Why are we here? (And should we bother with society at all because it feels so unbelievably depressing…)
You are here for the adventure, the challenge – to ride the wave and to prepare for generations to come. Listen to your own intuition or innate wisdom about what to do in a time of great change, be peaceful and dedicated. The best way to do this is some mediation and exercise daily (more on this later.)
You are so important; your opinions and ideals are of value and for goodness sake – don’t think “adults” have a clue what to do…So…Lead. That’s right! Believe in something and guide others: something higher, something more beautiful, something you truly want. Say it, speak it, sing it, paint pictures of it, break it down into detail, acknowledge it whenever and wherever you find it. Most people don’t change from their personalities so well defined by the time they enter Grade Three at age 10, no matter how old they are now. So lead and be a good teacher. Tell people no matter their age, what to do – gently and with compassion and firmness because you’re the teacher, not the student anymore. Every time you convince someone to do the right thing you have won.
#2. What is Love? And why does it hurt so much?
Love is wonderful and there are many kinds of love you’ll experience: friendships, lovers, partnerships, love of animals and nature, love of the world, ideals, humanity and Earth as she miraculously spins and flies through fantastic cosmos. But chances are, at some point, love’s going to hurt. Bad. At some point, you’ll misunderstand, you’ll lose, you’ll suffer, you’ll grieve. It’s going to hurt because you loved. You loved! Whether you were born with it, fell into it, stumbled on it or worked for it, you loved. Whether it was returned or not…and even when you lost someone. Honor that one you loved. Let’s just simplify it all and say, honor what you learned from each and every love you experienced, large or small, and grant yourself the blessing of having been brave enough to love.
Grief or loss will come in one form or another. Face it with grace by deeply honoring what you have learned from your attempt to love. Experience shapes you, but it’s only you who gets to decide how. Turn your experiential wisdom into power, and no one can take that away from you. Don’t give away your strength and energy by letting them make you a “victim”. That means don’t let them do criminal acts upon you and your friends. And if they do anyway, make them stop. There’s always a way to honor those you love. Keep your love alive by honoring the unique gifts of that person. Don’t let your love be disrespected by petty thoughts or acts of others. Disagree and lift up your love by loving even more. That is the only way to survive the suffering of grief and loss.
#3. Do you have a Mission here on Earth?
Yes, you have a mission. Believe it. Know your special gifts – whether you’ve got the gift of gab or the gift of silence, whatever you’re good at, this is your role. Milk it. Shine in it. And remember, you’re perfect. Every word you speak sends out ripples of peace (or any emotion) like the rain drops that fall on a lake or the stream that flows. You’ve a tremendous influence – just your very presence. Every tree makes the grove, every flower beautifies the meadow, every bird in the collective, every voice in the tribe, every one of you are more valuable than diamonds and gold. Love yourself like God would and you’ll be close enough to the stars to understand the magnificence of the cosmos and it will make you rich with experience.
#4. What happens when we die?
Short answer: you change form, the end. Or rather, NOT the end. Loads of research proves After Death Communications are real. Investigate the spirituality or science and you’ll find if you really look, that life simply does not end. Ask a medium or build your psychic powers and you’ll see. This is more real and true than most everything you see in the media. Ask those who have lost, really lost a loved one and chance are they know life is eternal, as painful as it is to lose a loved one from your Earthly life. So go ahead on and walk your chosen path, set out upon this adventure, influence as much as you can, but never be afraid of something which doesn’t really exist. Death is not an end. To be afraid of not existing is not necessary and even unscientific. If life is like a video game, the object is to survive as long as you can and get as much done as you can. So play. Stay in the game. We need you! The rest will take care of itself because your love is real and it doesn’t die – ever.
5. Can you be happy?
Happiness is hard work. It takes practice: Daily; Many times a day. Nudging up that smile, brushing off that complaint and choosing to be grateful instead: it takes focus and concentration to achieve. Being mindful in your movements, honoring your heart’s guidance, solving problems instead of dwelling on them, doing a little shadow work when you come up against triggers to discover why you might see something the way you do presently, and honestly asking yourself, “If this is an illusion, can’t I just change my mind?” Yes, you can. You can decide to be happy and act on your decision. It takes real strength and resilience – the integrity of soul to do it. Even if the civilization crumbles into dust, you can live with the Grace of Happiness and nothing can stop you. It’s your right. Own it.
Well, that’s your fairy godmother, Tia Tara advice for today, from a true matriarch who really cares about you.
Notice, “How to make a million $ overnight” was not on the list. Hey! I didn’t make the list! Besides, there are about a million videos to answer that question. And remember, if you have any more questions, you can call on me. I’m busy doing my best to be happy. Just ask and I’ll be here for you.
Ms Tara is teacher and a writer of interesting books for young adults and Founder of Danzen Movement Art