Across the street from my old front porch in my small hometown, there was a blooming tree that always made me happy. It was a tree that you’d normally see blooming in this area every spring – usually with beautiful white flowers or with bright pick flowers. This tree was special. It had been spliced at some point and both the pink and the white flowers bloomed on this tree; the colors not so much interspersed but instead wrapped around the tree next to each other in a strikingly harmonious way. This tree was well known and was easily the most beautiful tree to be found in a town filled with beautiful trees. This tree was good; it’s memory so vibrant in my memory that I painted a picture of it and hung it above my bed as a reminder of its beauty.
About a year before I moved, the tree was struck by lightening and caught on fire and never bloomed again. And so many times I would walk outside and see where the tree once stood and feel sad. There were still other beautiful blooms to be seen in the colorful neighborhood in which I lived, but none so extraordinarily so as this one tree with the two colors embracing each other.
When people talk about beautiful sunsets, they describe their beauty by the array of colors that are brought out in the sky just as the sun approaches the horizon. When we move into a house, we paint the walls of the rooms different colors in order to make the house warmer and more fun to look at and live in. When we buy cars, create art, capture photographs and even clothe our bodies, we use and appreciate different colors, shapes and shades as part of what makes these things more beautiful or more fun than it would be otherwise.
We recognize all the colors as equally beautiful and contributing to the overall beauty of the things themselves. In nature, in our homes and in our own appearance and in so many other ways we embrace color fully and we see beauty when colors are combined in a way that co-exist pleasingly. We like to see colors embracing in a way that leaves them more beautiful than they would be if they stood separate. We see this in almost every way…except in the color of our skin.
I am amazed at what I see happening in the United States right now. I don’t want to speak directly to the specific things that are happening because they are all so ugly and scary. I do want to say this though…the state of our country completely unacceptable. At this point in our evolution as a society and with all of the ways the human race has advanced in science and understanding, there is just no rhyme or reason for the kind of ignorance that we as a collective are demonstrating to ourselves and to the rest of the world.
There should not be people dying, threatened, oppressed or scared because of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or any other human quality. These things are just part of our human spectrum…our beauty as a collective humanity is made more beautiful by our differences and our diversity. This is the spectrum of diversity that makes the fabric of our humanity. We should not still be deciding what’s right for each other and hating each other because of our differences. Instead we should each be seeing ourselves as beautifully unique while allowing others to do the same around us; each of us creating a beautiful bloom of our own and embracing each other in a way that makes us the most beautiful tree on the block.
“Maybe I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one.” (John Lennon)