This is what the tree right outside of our front door looks like this morning. There is a certain beauty in the contrasts.
These mornings stir thinking. Most days the thoughts are not crisp and final, just moments on a path, that together, and over time might show greater clarity of where they are going.
Last night I was listening to a friend as he introduced the possibility of looking differently at some of the most volatile, violent, and dangerous elements of the divides that are appearing in the light of day here in the USA. It is understandable when people see the actors who attacked the Capital, or the police who shoot black citizens, as "bad" people. In fact we have heard the concept and metaphor of "bad apples" often used as a means of separating from "us", that ultimately just perpetuates the behavior of more "bad" people.
Our friend raised the question of how would things shift if we see people, the perpetrators of harmful acts and ways, not as "bad" people but as "sick" people among "us". How would a paradigm of sickness change how we see, and what we would do in response to sickness among "us"?
I don't claim to hold answers to the question. But I do feel it is a question worthy of pursuit.
We have the opportunity to shift our understanding that can come from living in a time of "sickness", with a viral disease that is passed from one to another among us. Noticing and addressing how this sickness spreads, and affects some of us more than others is critical, to reduce suffering and death, but equally important to heal the whole of "us".
This morning, it was the snowy tree outside of our door that began the meandering road that my thoughts travel. It triggered thoughts about, and images of, negative space, and the questions that come to my mind.
Negative space art forces us to see the whole. The images that appear could not exist in isolation.
So questions that arise for me today are:
How do we treat "sickness" among "us"?
How do we see the whole? How do we heal the whole?