One ocean, one continent
It’s… interesting … as I exist in the polarised United States at this present moment on tour with Bravo Amici. It’s a different America since last year’s tour of Florida.
As previously explained, I almost didn’t get here. That experience brought it quickly home to me that it’s a different world right now, in these times.
What do I know? I’m just a well-off, middle aged (did I just admit that?) white guy who is seldom on the sharp end of negative stereotypes or racism, unlike so many others now or throughout history.
I caught a tiny glimpse of what it might be like to be on the receiving end of a negative stereotype when I was treated like a criminal for five hours in an immigration holding room in Houston. But forget I said that, it’s barely worth mentioning when held up against what else is going on in this world.
Truly, how can these attitudes continue to go on when our countries are built on years of history of immigrants changing the face of each one? I saw something recently which mentioned that in this world where frontiers seem so important, the Queen of England is descended from a German family and married a Greek Prince; the Spanish royal house is Austro-Hungarian; the Swedish royal house is French. Our alphabet is Latin, our numerical system is Arabic, our philosophy is Greek. We live in a world which was once just one ocean and one continent. A world where the same man is at the root of three major religions.
Dare we say it, Mr Trump, you are the son of a Scottish immigrant woman who married the son of a family of German immigrants. You are married to a Slovenian and divorced from a Czech.
What’s going on?!
I’m not trying to weigh in and talk politics. I’m thinking about fear, misinformation and bullying.
Pondering the realization that in many instances, diversity is not celebrated but feared.
Thinking about history… How did our countries become their own, and what role did immigration play in it? What about the origin of religion and how to respect other people’s traditions and hope that they respect ours? What about the relationship between countries and how to interact and connect meaningfully with people from countries different to our own?
Knowing that we create our thinking, and project it onto what we see around us, and then confirm to ourselves that what we believe is true, we also have to be careful about taking our thinking so seriously.
Chaos may reign around us, or our thinking may believe it so, yet we too are perfectly imperfect. If only the righteous wouldn’t lose sight of their own perfect imperfections, which connect us, not divide us. ‘Separate realities’ because we’re all unique. That’s a good thing, not something to fear or eradicate. Even in this supposed chaos, we have the ability to love and connect with others; it’s only a thought away. We live in a world which was once just one continent and one ocean, remember? ONE. Unity. Harmony.
As long as we constantly try to engage in meaningful connection and conversation with others each day and encourage them to do the same, especially those different from us, maybe, just maybe, we will create a ripple effect, and a ripple will become a wave…