Bellamy Young on Small Acts of Kindness

Interview: Maranda Pleasant

Maranda Pleasant: Hi, how are you!

Bellamy Young: I’m so good, how are you?

MP: I haven’t watched television in fourteen years. Scandal has the best writing of any show that I have seen. There’s nothing else to compare it to.

BY: Unparalleled. It’s new. It’s a whole new thing. The pace of it is new, the structure of it is new—it’s definitely a hybrid in terms of procedural and character-driven piece.

MP: What are you passionate about in life?

BY: For me, singing. I wouldn’t make it through the day without singing. It is my solace and my meditation and my release. It lets me know how I’m processing things, what I’m processing, if I’m out of touch in some area. I will just think, why am I singing? Then I will know everything I need to know about what I’m feeling.

But also, kindness. That is what thrills me, personally. Small acts of kindness; thoughtful, large acts of kindness. I feel like we’re in a bit of a precipice, and I think that any beautiful energy on the kindness continuum will just help us fall into a lovelier place. From the fear and constriction that’s sort of always pulling us back and keeping us in old modalities, I feel like any expansive act of kindness, thoughtfulness, and generosity, helps tip the scale toward a more conscious, liberated existence for everyone. The smallest act has repercussions for the universe.

MP: How do you keep your center in the middle of chaos? Do you have a routine?

BY: I have to meditate before I go to bed, always. I have to let the day go and let the eternal in. Sleep is such a potent, liminal state, and I don’t want to drag anything in there that doesn’t need to be there. I get a lot of work done in my dreams and I don’t want to take anybody else’s work with me. We all got plenty of work in this life, so for sure I have a very simple seated meditation practice before bed. But equally helpful to me is a walking meditation—to be in nature, to not be attached to my electronics, and to just be instead of be doing. And yoga, always. The union.

MP: How do you process pain, emotional pain, when it comes in?

BY: And it does, always, you know?

MP: Always. Thank you for that!

BY: Always, right? I process it like a teacher. The more I resist anything, the stronger it gets. I have to welcome the pain like I welcome the joy. And the pain is always bringing me a lesson.  If I listen to the lesson when the pain is manageable, the pain won’t get gargantuan and flatten me entirely, because I will have received the message at the center. I receive it as gently as I can, because the cruelest thing that I do to myself is try to push myself through an experience. If I’m feeling hurt, sad, lonely, depressed, and then I shame myself for feeling that, then that’s a black hole for me. I really have worked a lot to meet pain with both gratitude and gentleness. You gotta love yourself, because when you’re hurting—you never know who’s gonna be around to do the lovin’ for ya. You gotta love yourself through the pain.

MP: Such a joy to talk to you. What is love to you?

BY: Love is a true unconditional space to me. To love someone or to be loved is to be seen, and I think, gosh, as humans, all we want is to be seen, to be heard, right? To be valued. To be respected. But mostly just to be held in a safe, unconditional space.

MP: What causes on the planet are you passionate about? Anything that’s near to your heart?

BY: For me, it’s adoption. I am adopted, so of course it means the world to me personally. But also even animals. There’s a lot of life on the planet that needs love, wants love, deserves love, in whatever capacity we are able. I feel it is a blessing, a duty, an honor, that we give the love that we have, and we share the lives that we have with our fullest heart. Souls finding each other and sharing love through this road. I foster a lot. Not humans, animals.