The Ugly Side of Truthful Inexactitudes.
Child Q isn't an isolated incident. It is an incident much the same as millions of other abuses of nature, and a commitment to the sysematic dehumanisation of the body, mind and spirit.
I see, let's all avoid looking at the rather large, and iridescent "elephant in the room"...and yes, we ALL know why Child Q happened. The destorialisation of black people, the reinforcing of specific stereotypes that psychologically infect bodies, coupled with a sustained and deliberate effort of over 12 centuries of philosophically engineered beliefs. These have been securely crafted by multiple societies, defining what it is to be human. Such conclusions systemically exclude black and brown people from that geopolitical, psychosocial and chronospiritual palette.
Unfortunately, the "white" fragility so eloquently discussed by DiAngelo, again raises it institutional head and intimidating horns. These horns are there to avert the knowing gaze of millions of young people who are not content with the obvious refried-pseudo-narrative of equality, for which insitutional teeth have brutally extracted over time. However, They are no longer afraid. Now adults are not afraid. And now, Elders are not afraid. What is a government to do, when those who are supposed to be tightly coddled and warm in their blanket of dopamine-cortisol -induced-media-safety, realise how excruciatingly cold and inhospitable reality has become.
Yes, we all KNOW. George Floyd didn't die because someone was doing their job, he died because someone believed he wasn't HUMAN. (https://irr.org.uk/article/mental-health-police-deaths/) and (https://www.inquest.org.uk/bame-deaths-in-police-custody)
Yes, WE all know.
Destorialisation is now longer a StoryAID theory, it is a psychococial and chronspiritual reality to which we, irrespective of our geography and heritage, are damaged by people who believe their have the power to alter the future.
YES, WE ALL KNOW.
WE ALL KNOW, AND WE ARE NOT AFRAID OF HOPE, LOVE, NATURE AND THE INCLUSIVE RICHNESS OF BEING HUMAN AND SENTIENT.
Now we must ROAR.
To all those with whom I have collaborated, created new and innovative experiences, provided opportunities for vulnerable human beings to feel loved, culturally acknowledged, respected and valued, I am very grateful. I have, and still work, with some extraordinary far-thinking people in health, education, justice, and the creative arts industries. It is indeed a privilege to know that my purpose is recognised by you, and so have blessed me with the resources to continue to deliver this much needed work. We are in a position to encourage every human being to explore this extraordinary depth of healing, which emerges when the sentient beings experience reconnection and the rediscovery of their inner stories. I, and those I have the pleasure of working with have witnessed this phenomenon, more times than I can count.
As a result of creating safe spaces for life changing stories to emerge, I have witnessed children and young people feeling hopeless, rediscover meaning and the confidence to make that first tentative step, to reclaiming their voice. Adults, traumatised by being emotionally and spiritually eviscerated; rediscover a story which fills them with a hopeful future. Intergenerational groups from a number of cultures rediscover a way of exploring inspirational stories with each other, no longer isolated by fear, disability and trauma. Finally, businesses reconnecting with what it means to be responsible for another life. However, as I walk my path as a storyteller and narrative coach, informed by my African heritage, I am reminded that for the most part, being accorded the privilege of living as a human being, a sentient being, is still something that is still a daily negotiation.
I cry. I cry because I can breathe. I cry because, I cannot excise the slow moving images, described in detail, showing life drain from another soul. I weep, because that person who is simply walking towards a belief that the next experience will be a hug from their loved one, experiences an abrupt end to the precious life they have not yet lived. I weep, as a young life, experiences the cold brutality of hate, with no explanation, because there isn't one. But what is most painful and horrifying is to understand that I have died so many times. With the exception of time and distance, I am that person whose breath was pushed from his body. That woman, whose life is savagely taken with a single bullet. That Elder, who refused to allow a young life to be extinguished and offered theirs instead. The trauma never dies. Yet, the hope of sharing light and love must always live. Ubuntu.
I am forced to consider such ordinary life experiences such as walking to school in Thamesmead, going to church with my friends in Charlottesville, buying groceries from a store in a favela, being able to read, driving home with my loved ones, playing games with my friends, smiling, enjoying a place to life, challenging injustice, as potentially fatal activities. I witness globally, the anguish of poverty forcing me to drink poisoned water, eating contaminated food, contributing to life changing illnesses. None of this makes sense. 200,000 years ago, the Khoisan of Southern Africa, understood that you live in harmony with your environment: take what you need, not what you want. Simple. The First Nation Americans knew that the land was not theirs, it was for everyone. The indigenous Australians knew that they were part of a larger cycle of life, and they were responsible for ensuring that those who followed them were cognisant of their unique and significant role in maintaining that balance in the Universe. This is the power, beauty and wisdom of story, living in harmony with nature: living in balance with yourself.
And so, I do the work I have been called to do. To be in service of others. Helping sentient beings reconnect and rediscover their inner stories. Each sentient being deserves to experience love and to be loved, to be valued, to belong and to pursue a life that will inspire and heal some other person on this very small planet on which we all live. I see in each person, myself, a human being full of magical stories and possibilities, but I fear, as this recent history has shown (repeatedly), it will be a lifetime before I am afforded this natural experience of being human.
*Quote from the Honourable Ben Okri from his book "A Time for New Dreams" (2011)
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