I swear that I did not engineer Morning Pages today. My focus in my mind was to bring together, synthesize, ideas about our interrelatedness as human beings, despite nationality, race, ethnicity, gender, culture, and all that good stuff. I began thinking about the ideas, quotes, people I would bring to bear on it, and then, I found myself thinking about what I wrote yesterday and how all the maze of ideas I had really exemplified the “condition” known as Attention Deficit Disorder.
I will repeat just a bit of this morning’s ideas. ADD was studied, labeled, and diagnosed because kids who think a lot won’t sit passively in a classroom. Education is the entity that should be studied, labeled, and diagnosed as deficient, not meeting the requirements of broad, varied, and deep thinkers who can analyze, synthesize, and connect and contrast so many concepts of life. The fact that such students don’t achieve high grades means they don’t meet the standards used to judge more passive students, who educators prefer because it’s easier to deal with docile masses. It’s also stupid; as I said, the educational philosophy and practice are deficient, not so-called ADD students. And BOOM! I’m done with that.
Over the last two years, the racial tensions in the United States have been highlighted and energized by lots of attention — both positive and negative. I am tempted here to say something about my background, but you know what? It doesn’t mean a damn thing, in this case, because my point is this: the essence of each individual human of any race is the heart, and hearts are spirit — no color. If you insist on color creating problems, you have perpetuated the problem, not skin color.
Now, I would say I enjoy diversity when it is not used as a weapon to further raise racial tensions or create divisions. I love hearing other perspectives, learning about other cultures that make me appreciate them, and celebrating life because of those who look, live, and believe differently than I do. No diversity efforts should ever, regardless of perspective, force or require others to participate in or adopt any one culture. The sharing should always create appreciation for and understanding of one another. In addition, society should not be engineered to favor one culture over another, especially in terms of opportunity or expression of culture.
Why am I passionate about this right now? Several reasons, but one of the big ones is the wonderful diversity I have seen in my new Instagram friends. I love it, love seeing pictures and comments about their lives and beliefs and cultures, especially when most of the them just share with no insistence on belief. And having said that, I don’t even mind if someone says everyone should support one cause or another; that’s okay, but don’t expect me to do it, except for the cause of self-awakening, of listening to Heart, which ultimately results in expressing love to the world.
Hearts create love because we can love when we know and live Self in a fulfilled, significant life when we heed our heart. Heart links to eternal Spirit, pure love. Haters are living insignificant or unfulfilled lives or both. Heeding the Heart changes all that. That’s why I call the principle my Grand Unified Theory of Humanity, actually it may be the Theory of Everything of Humanity.
And this brings me to the poem I desperately wanted to get to by Maya Angelou. It’s one of her well-known poems. How can such beauty be ignored in such troubled times — both racially and politically right now? “Human Family” begins with a bit of irony, because a reader might expect an African American woman to point out obvious differences in race. But no, not Maya:
“I note the obvious differences / in the human family. / Some of us are serious, / some thrive on comedy.” Love it!
I want to point out that Maya had an amazing sense of language and its power to communicate heart concepts. Her words need the spirit of the physical human to relay those deeper ideas and ideals, which is why her poetry jiggles, jumps, glides, oozes, and does dozens of other things when read aloud: “Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper shades of meaning.” Try reading “Human Family” aloud, or pull up someone reading it on YouTube.
She does get to racial themes in the poem: “The variety of our skin tones / can confuse, bemuse, delight…” As with other poems, I wish I were a YouTuber and could link you in here and read the whole poem, but since this is not so, let me get to the greater theme.
In the sixth stanza, Maya says, “Mirror twins are different / although their features jibe…” Just because someone looks just like us does not mean they are the same. What do we do with such knowledge? Can differences be tolerated?
Not only tolerated, but noted and celebrated as she does in the poem: “In minor ways we differ, / in major we’re the same. // I note the obvious differences between each sort and type,…” And then what? Demonstrations? Riots? Discriminatory practices? Lesser quality of care in all arenas of life? No, not in Maya’s thinking, for she makes a response of the Heart unequivocally clear by ending with this statement repeated three times: “…we are more alike, my friends, / than we are unalike.”
God, I wish I could have known her and shared a meal and conversation with her. So, no matter my color or your color, my faith or your faith, my ethnicity or your ethnicity, my culture or your culture, we are more alike because at essence, we are Heart. The problems come when we play on the differences to establish “otherness” instead of celebrating, which is exactly when we are walking in ego and not heeding our heart.
If any would say I, personally, don’t understand because I am privileged or I am not the right color or whatever, I call bullshit. “We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.”
This is the logic, the spirit, the drive, the guidelines that politicians, educators, social workers, every thinking leader and policy-setter should be tucking away in their hearts and minds and unfolding in their discussions and decisions. We cannot afford anything less during these times. “We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.”
Questions to consider:
How many times have you asked yourself or simply thought about the following questions?
Who am I, really?
What is my truth?
How do my actions reveal what I really feel and believe?
What would I do with my life if I could do anything?
What is my passion?
Why am I here?
How can I discover answers to any of these questions?
If you have considered any of these questions, I hope that my experiences and writing will give you some guidance. Please read my blog and comment and share your thoughts. I would love to hear from you!