It’s a chaotic world. If you are brave enough to watch the evening news you know that the one word to describe it is “frenzy”. It seems like a free-for-all and everyone is jockeying for position. I feel as if we’re starting to experience a universal experience of exhaustion. I was messaging with a friend of mine today and he said, regarding the new administration, “It’s only been two weeks but it feels like two years.”
On the flip side, I feel renewed when I hear about certain stories that show how the world is supposed to work. There was a young girl with her mother at a KFC. She witnessed a customer tell the employee his wanted his meal remade because it was prepared by a black man. The little girl, who goes to a Christian school, was horrified. In turn to begin the act of reparation and healing, she took the man at the restaurant cards that spoke about love and acceptance. This was a child initiating it! Don’t you think she’s way too young to feel like the “weight of the world” is on her shoulders?
Today I also heard a story about a man in the LA area who has been a foster parent to children with terminal illnesses. He wants these children, some who will die while he cares for them, to know that they aren’t alone. This isn’t about being a hero. I believe he is trying to lift the “weight of the world” off the shoulders of these young souls.
I was watching the documentary, As Is about the work done by artist Nick Cave. The documentary took him to the community of Shreveport, Louisiana. They created beaded blankets depicting their stories. In the end, during a community performance, they lay all the beaded blankets on top of him, each depicting their story and now he’s bearing the “weight of the world”. After all the bead blankets are on top of him, he rolls them up in his own beaded blanket and carries them away.
We all bear the “weight of the world” on our shoulders. True, it might only be our world, and not all of humanities, but it can still feel heavy. The meditations I’ve done over the past twenty-five days have helped me (most of the time) to feel as if that burden isn’t going to drag me under. It has given me room to create visual reflections of my pilgrimage. It continues to help lighten the load.
How do you bear the “weight of the world”? What keeps you afloat?