On Monsters – Imagined and Real

by jdr

This post is inspired, in part, by our latest addition to the likelihood art project and storybook – Brooklyn artist Kylin O’Brien’s http://homeworks-get.com/?mining=scan-computer-for-bitcoin-miners The Monster Project. Kylin works with monster images drawn by kids and paints them as murals BIG around town. Check it out follow link here.

I love the Monster Project idea. Why? Because often people do anything and everything to suppress, hide and avoid that which they find frightening. For kids, these may be imagined monsters that exist only in their imaginations.

But what about we big kids, otherwise known as “adults” – what do we do with our monsters, and what might they look like? Are they imagined? Or real?

One imagined monster to consider:

The big ugly monster that states we must all be, look, and act the same.

Whether this is our skin color, our trendy fashions or lack thereof, our beliefs, values, tribe, religion, type of neighborhood we live in or car we drive, this monster is telling a lie – we do not all need to be, look or act the same. This is a big, beautiful world and there’s plenty of room for all of us – the laid back, hyper-fashionable, atheists, hyper-religious, etc., and those people who fall into every category in between.

We’re not five years old anymore, so let’s drag this monster out into the light of day and chat about it. While there surely exists a lot of very real pressure to conform in the world, once we open our eyes wide enough, we can see clearly that a diverse population is a more resilient one. And once we learn to respect and celebrate our wide range of unique views, we’ll realize a less violent human experience.

What’s so scary about there being room for everyone?

One real monster to consider:

Recently, in Norway, many innocent people were attacked and killed by what might be called a real monster in our midst. It’s particularly poignant to consider this monster as part of this discussion because multiculturalism, variety, and differing viewpoints were what this terrorist noted as the triggers for his heinous crime.

What fuels someone like this is yet another monster in our midst – the imagined monster of superiority. The claim of superiority that some individuals make is what they use to justify violence and attacks on people whose opinions differ from theirs. This type of supremacy is arrogance in action.

This supposed superiority exists only in the imagination – it’s not true, it’s just an idea used to orient oneself in a world where some questions are difficult to answer, where people hold various ideas about what is right, where paradox and contradiction are part of our daily experience. It’s a fear-based model that holds the “other” as culprit rather than as a fellow human with different ideas. These variations and different perspectives do not need to incite fear and terror in us. They can be valued and recognized as part of a world that is complex, rich, deep, mysterious and – beautiful in its variety.

How about if we give up our dependence on false senses of superiority? How about if we set aside our fragile egos so we can really embrace the mysterious nature of humanity and make room for everyone?

Ultimatums, rigid beliefs and false claims of superiority stymie progress and are obstacles to humanity living its best existence.

Flexible, open-minded, creative, empowered, vibrant ways of being can bring magic to our lives – if we demonstrate the courage to let the spotlight of compassion fall on all of us, rather than just some of us.

Let’s get curious about mOnSteRs – both within and without. We learn a lot about ourselves when we explore what we think and why we think it. Then we can choose even more enlightened beliefs so we can create a more just world, a place where we can embrace each other without the suffocating pain of superiority, abject conformity and disdain.

We can, and I hope we will, make go site our OneWorld a work of art.

Love and courage to the people of Norway.


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