Why do we still see in color?
When color came to film, it was a thrilling moment. When color came to television, it was a groundbreaking moment. We celebrated the richness of the colors and they’ve only sharpened over the years. Today our images are even more alive, our colors more vibrant.
Yet, while we celebrate color in the digital world, why don’t we do the same in the real world? Why do we still stop there? Why do we build so many differences – race, ethnicity, religion, class? Why?
As one who’s traveled widely, criss-crossed continents several times, and even bumped up and down on the socio-economic ladder, it’s become quite apparent that people are people, no matter what color – pink, purple, green even! It’s become apparent that our frustrations, worries, concerns, fears are so universal. That is why great art, literature, and music sees no divide. Because its message is of human emotion.
That is why health is so critical to all. Disease has no patience for such differences. It is, in that sense, most fair.
Why is it that we live in such rich, complex societies with stories that stem from different corners of the globe and yet we still hesitate to truly embrace one another? Why?
When the rawness of humanity is so universal, why do we dwell on the superficial?
A friend sent me an article this morning that delineated our inability to truly live in our lifetimes because we are too eager to please. We are creatures who oddly think of others before ourselves many times. We are inclined to bend to the wishes of family and dear friends, even if they are against our deepest desires. We gravitate towards what we are told us “right.” But what is “right?” Is it my “right”? Is it your “right”? Who came up with “right”?
And in the mad cacophony of voices in our head, we forget our own. What if we do not see the differences? What if we do not see color, race, ethnicity, religion, or class? Should we because the world does as well? Should we because our families do as well? Should we because it is easier that way – to drive in the lane that you’re currently taking?
The questions seem endless. And yet, the answer repeatedly seems to be the same — no.
In a conversation with another friend this evening, he shared his admiration for those who take the sayings like “follow your heart,” “do what you love” and really do it. He says to me, there are so few in the this world who actually do it. Many of us hear it, admire it, delude ourselves to believe that we’re doing that, but how many of us go naked with our fears and take the challenge? Very few, he whispered. That’s why it’s admirable.
But, it’s also very hard. It’s very hard to explain to others; rather it’s very tiring. And sometimes, the daily strain of that exercise just tears us down emotionally. And so we return to the “right” path.
For so many of us, the lives that we live are the lives that have been crafted for us. They are not our raw desires. They are not our original vision. They are not our first love.
We do so to please others. To fit into the sweeping definitions we are defined by. Even if they sweep our lives by.
But, we live only for a few moments, only a few years on this planet, only a short lapse in the grander scheme. Why not please ourselves? Why not be guided by unfiltered passion? Why not go blind, using only what we feel? Why not be absolutely true to our deepest wishes?
Because it is difficult?
But nothing is difficult. As I’m told repeatedly, life is simple. People complicate it.