Monday, December 24, 2012

Starry, starry night ...

Vincent van Gogh sold just one painting during his career.  The best of his works were done in a brief three-year period before he took his own life, "... for the good of all." 

Attempts were made to bring him back from the edge where his mental dysfunction had dragged him, but with little effect.  There was no science or medical understanding in those days for the brokenness of his mind, the chemical imbalances, the upside-down causes and effects.  The world had no place for him.  Things are perhaps a little better now.

It does make you wonder, though.  Our human world seems well-equipped for some but perhaps not for all.  At its center, the successful among us find society welcoming us and making a place for us.  Moving outward from that center though, life becomes progressively more difficult.  Less opportunity, less welcome, less of a comfortable place and more of a struggle just to survive.

At its center, success shapes more success for itself, and it does so at the expense of the larger whole. 
World trade practices favor the powerful and wealthy, while often negatively affecting people struggling to make a living.  World governance shapes itself to foster business and power, often at the expense of justice for the marginalized.

In a small African country, dad and his kids tend their prolific garden plot.  Okra (!), corn, beans, manioc; enough to
feed themselves and sell a little.  A family of six, they're working hard and making progress.  We get to be part of it
with them.  (A friend from the states provided the start-up help.)
Perhaps the next world will be better.  Or rather than resignation, might we instead reshape this one?  One little piece at a time!  What could be more fun than that?

Merry Christmas, 2012.

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