Our Shared Humanity


women-with-flower

As the world becomes more interconnected with the influx of opposing concepts, we must remember that every once in while, we all stop to smell the roses.

As an American, and a recipient of inescapable imagery that correlates Muslim women wearing Niqabs with the threats of terrorism, I hope in the near future there may be a time when we consider not our differences but we’re able to see our shared humanity. A time where we may be unscathed by the terrors of war and poverty, seeing only our shared humanity to reconcile our fears. Desperate in a world with far too much darkness, my insides cry out for a reconciled community. In a world where individualism has waged and won the battle, I stand against the storm that threatens to consume me.

For those who are weary and broken, let us conjure up our hopes and dreams for a resolution. Broken against the strides of imperialism and technological entrapment, let us commence back in which we came, back to a place of harmony where mother nature serves to gain.

Susan Thistlethwaite in her book, “Dreaming of Eden”, reflects on the 1998 movie Pleasantville. Thistlethwaite, suggests that the film presents a scenario in which social transformation can be achieved through the incorporation of good and evil. According to Thistlethwaite’s review, the people of Pleasantville had a perceived perfect and good society,  projecting an image of innocence. However, after the integration of opposing concepts, Pleasantville becomes diversified. Thistlethwaite suggests, though this process inflicts conflict, resistance and pain it ultimately leads the community to become more colorful and culturally diversified. Thistlethwaite beckons her readers to recognize that their is no “perfect” society, that the knowledge of “good and evil” stems our creativity and is apart of human progression and social transformation.

As we face the era of globalization and cultural integration, like Thistlethwaite’s conception of Pleasantville, it is in the intermingling of our traditions and cultures that we will find our creative force for a new progressive society that has the capacity to overcome fear and terror. Our fragile existence may become all the more powerful when we approach our darkest fears, and find our commonalities.

 

 

 

 

4 thoughts on “Our Shared Humanity”

  1. Jolie,
    Thank you for your passionate and poetic post. I love this quote by Gwendolyn Brooks: “We are each other’s harvest; we are each other’s business; we are each other’s magnitude and bond.” Going further, we are each other, and so we need each other. By recognizing our shared humanity and then accepting and even finding joy in each other’s differences we eliminate fear – we don’t do it by building walls. Deborah

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  2. Powerful image of the offered rose. In your writing I hear how much your heart aches and yearns for a way forward that might be more complicated in some ways, but is ultimately harmonious. Your appeal to those who are weary and broken pulls me in. I can relate.

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  3. You have beautifully described a world to which we as Christians should all strive. Your words are poetic and so aptly respond to the current reality of the world in which we live. There was a time in our society when black men were the most feared men in America. Today that title has been passed on to Muslim men, and women wearing Niqabs, or anyone speaking what might be Arabic. Today, sadly we live in a world where difference elicits fear and judgment.
    Just this week, the Dalai Lama reminded us that “all world religions carry the same message of love…harmony, mutual respect, and mutual learning….” Yet at the same time many use religion to hate, spread violence and discord. But our God, every God, is a God of love. And our God would not have created or allowed such diversity if it were not intentional. So as we explore our differences and diversity, I agree with you that we should seek to find that common place in our differences, and seek a place where together we can begin to build each other up instead of trying to destroy difference in order to create homogeneity.
    Thank you for your insightful words. Peace.

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