"I can't breathe". Right there. The devastating connection. And the metaphor. A black man pinned down... unable to breathe. A virus called Covid-19 attacking the respiratory system, rendering people unable to breathe. "I can't breathe" is a literal and physical manifestation of oppression... which is a huge and complex machine that needs to be dismantled. It's complex, yes. But there is one connecting force that stands out to me overall: a denial of and resistance to our INTERdependence. That we need each other to survive and thrive. We've got to SEE each other to BE with each other INTERdependently. I don't offer this as an answer or a fix to anything... just an observation that connects the dots for me. As an artist and a thinker and a feeler, this is how I process life. And how I express it. Not a replacement for any concrete steps to be taken to dismantle the destructive "isms" in our society (i.e. new laws, reparations and accountability)... but part of MY work is where my heart takes me in times like these. Shining light on the possible deeper meanings and broader scope of humanity's "conscious evolution".
So my mind and heart often go to questions: like, why is interdependence such a threat? Enough to divide us over EVERYthing... even things that would seem to bring us together? If I believe that is at the heart of it all... our connection to each other... what is it in us as a society that wants to cling to unhealthy INdependence? Me-ness instead of we-ness? There must be a sense of safety in it... but IS it safety? If we are alive, we ALL have a heartbeat. That is the undeniable truth. We breathe, therefore we are alive. But ARE we? Are we really HERE? I'm talking awareness. Heart presence. If we can't acknowledge the value of every single heartbeat that is part of the collective heartbeat... well, we as humanity face extinction... literally and figuratively. We ALL suffer. We ALL cannot breathe. We must breathe together.
"Do we see the eyes... do we see the soul? If we have to break... how much more?"
A song is coming. Well... so much is coming. But from this artist, this is a part of "how I do". I have to create. I have to express. I am not helpless... and also, I kind of am. So I LISTEN. I try to SEE. And I pray for guidance. For myself. For us all. Because this is messy. We are going to stumble in our best efforts. But this isn't about making ourselves look good or feel better. It's also not about shaming and blaming ourselves. It's about being open to learning... and to listening to the oppressed voice. And right now, the black voice. Listening, listening, listening.
Let us be guided by the deep, caring God-love that is underneath everything, whether we always see it or not. Just pouring "love and light" on everything may not cut it, but it also cannot be discounted. The energy of love is a very powerful thing. And taking time to BREATHE is powerful. And really seeing and knowing that with every breath, we are breathing together. And helping each other to breathe. THAT is powerful.