Over the last few days I have been battling with an irritating sore throat which has morphed into a persistent cough. I haven’t had much energy to talk, but I have caught up with writing some posts on my family history blog, Among the Branches, which can be followed here.
Writing about this particular branch of my ancestral family I am fascinated (and often saddened) by the sectarian mind, the apparent need to be certain that “we” are right and “they” are wrong. The feeling of security that comes from belonging to a group of like minded people, and the fear of being alienated from that same group, are familiar to us all in various forms. In my ancestral family, standing on principals and insisting on doing things “right” frequently led to acrimony and alienation, and much heartache.
How do we find a way to live together in our eclectic mix of backgrounds, cultures, experiences and treasured beliefs? That’s a question that’s being asked in families, and on national and global stages. I don’t have the answer!
Over the last few weeks I have also been having some fun experimenting with various art forms on a mixed media art journaling course Wanderlust 2019 from Everything Art. This week was a challenge, an opportunity to play with an eclectic mix of bits and bobs and form them into a meaningful creation. The process was worrying at times, as the variety of stuff looked very messy and unpromising. But the results were surprisingly satisfying, not perfect, but I felt they did have a final coherence which wasn’t obvious from the start.
Lessons from history and making stuff; perhaps it’s better to trust the process, the muddle and the mess, than insist on being right. Compromise will always be less than perfect, but perhaps that’s best it can be, as good as it gets, and it may even end up with a unique beauty of its own.