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Because our stories need to be told...

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Humanity Does Not Occur In A Vacuum

Maybe you've heard this statement before.

You know, how what happens to another does not occur in isolation, but has an impact upon the entire world…upon all of us. To illustrate this, we can observe when we throw a stone into a pond. The phenomenon that transpires when the stone hits the water-- that not only is the immediate area affected or disturbed, but concentric circles echo outward from the event.

So it is with us.

When something negative happens to someone else--to a people, a culture, a country, etc. we are all affected. To be truly human, means we are moved in some kind of way by what we've seen or understood that others have endured or are experiencing. While our responses may vary, we cannot deny the effect that the observation of pain, war, starvation, and maltreatment has upon us.  This is also true of the positive. 

I won’t tip-toe around any of this, because I don’t see by doing so that it will aid our current societal concerns. It is imperative that we acknowledge our differences in culture, lifestyles, and simply differences in just being, and then to embrace these differences; to also see just how many ways we really are the same and allow this to coalesce us. Via The Joker’s Wyld, I hope to produce projects that focus on our humanity.

I’d like to present to you the interactions of humanity impacted that I and others that I know have experienced, in a manner, that while you may or may not always agree or even understand fully the context or perspective, that the hope is that I may nonetheless engage you and that this will activate a thought process, or plant a seed... a conversation that begins many conversations.

 

I will ask for you to consider.

This option was once presented to me by a professor in a university level, popular music course. His challenge to our class was whenever we heard a style of music that we did not like, that it was not enough to dismiss it as something distasteful or unpalatable. He encouraged us to listen to the song thoroughly and discover it--permit ourselves the opportunity to understand the lyrics and then formulate our thoughts, so that even if we came to the same conclusion as before, we did so by being informed, thoughtful and rational. The decision was more concrete, and based on facts and information rather than shallowness, ignorance, bias, etc.  Perhaps, the song or genre even gained a new follower, as we learned that perhaps we misunderstood, misjudged or that we were wrong, and our biases were clearly linked to other reasons, like hearsay or groupthink (this definitely takes place in art). Either way, the onus was upon us to seek the proper information and to simply not decide upfront absent of this information that we had disdain for the music without investigating it.

I will ask the same of you.

To please consider what I posit to you with an open mind. This is a good way for us to experience the world.

 

Throughout my life, I have experienced that for some, not only has the acknowledgement of other’s humanity not been easy, but often it is not desired. That the concept of humans not living in a vacuum or being islands is a foreign or distal concept. That there are those that think the problems of the world or the world's circumstances are for everyone else to handle or even that these problems don’t exist, especially if we just stop bringing them up. That if they observe another person or entity harming another, it's not their responsibility or their issue and some will say so out loud. I am compelled out of desperation and concern to address this and it has led me to this space and why we are engaging, now. Throughout my life, there has been this process of embracing those around me and learning what I can from being a member of society--how to intervene in the cycle of breaking people. I believe that it's everyone's responsibility to break the cycle of pain and brokenness.

 

Exposing a few of my inspirations for writing  and producing or my “muses”.

 

I have been involved in situations, where instead of only becoming incensed by what has occurred, I've turned to writing and dark humor--a coping mechanism, nevermind whether it is healthy or not, haha.  At other times, I simply abide in the raw, pure process of living, loving, enduring sadness or pain that's pressing upon me. This has permitted me to turn real experiences into sketches, stories or semi- autobiographical accounts and poetry. I am pressed to express these points of "humanity" because of those interactive, concentric circles rippling across that join other ripples, connecting. It is the hope that if we tell our stories that we will observe how interconnected we are and this will be a gateway to how we can begin or continue to regard one another by either seeing a similar perspective or decidedly carrying another's pain. Humans having a variety of identities, should not cause a crisis, nor be a centralizing point for separatism. Diversity is truly a merit and not a fault and being considerate and holding each other in high regard is not weakness, but a strength and a necessary aspect for the prospering of a species, a nation, a world; so is change.

With “change” I am  now brought to these final sections.

 

The photographs above are decidedly not stock photos, but images from different aspects of a full life, snapshots of “my humanity”...a world that I share with the world. They are an attempt to give broad strokes to what a life may look like to someone who is endeavouring to live 'outside a vacuum', to practice what I preach. Living outside of a vacuum has taken me across the world for the first time in my life (4,161 miles or 6,697 km), at a much older age and out of my comfort zone, to so many different realities. Admittedly, there are gaps in this collage, because there are pictures that I could not post for a myriad of reasons, (and the ones that are posted have been blurred for the most part, for protection) but all of these are from a world to which I live and love.

I am not here because I think that what I am doing or have experienced is unique. On the contrary, I believe my experiences are similar to what has been experienced by others. Similarities connect us. Yet, as I will restate, we also get to be different, diverse, and distinct and these qualities allow our interactions to be rich and fulfilling, at least, this is what they should do.

Although I have been redundant, it is with cause. I don't want to hide or live in fear of what I think is necessary to be said. I’d like to add my voice to the collective of voices that exist in our world and share with you additional perspectives. I believe that there is a bankrupting of humanity taking place, and that we need to share our perspectives with each other, so that we may become accustomed to hearing a voice or perspective that is not our own, thus normalizing what should have always been, well, normal.

The world is wide, with a sea of people in it.

 

Our journey begins here....

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