Thursday, August 14, 2008

Who are these people?

Who are we? Who are we, who question established precepts, argue the considered opinion of mass media, and as someone rather unfairly put it, are intellectual wankers?

But then who are we, we who are confident of our identities, our capabilities, our place in the scheme of things even if not endorsed by official authority? Who are we who observe, experience, digest, process, understand (or not) the onrushing ocean of text, images, sound, smell, touch, feelings, emotions, and still not drown?

Why is it that the artistic, the creative, the truly innovative affects us more than the money that can, or may not, be generated from it? That we mostly choose the art, and not the money, and are happier for it?

Who are we who question our own ideals, as we also find wanting the ideals of others? And if we leave aside political, economic, military and religious ideals, then there really isn't much to make a choice from other than the creative spirit.

Why do we from across countries and continents, rivers and oceans, mountains and forests, connect at a common point where our skills and abilities, our wealth and means, our status in society, our origins and backgrounds, are of no consequence? They say 'birds of a feather', 'like minds'... They are right.

But they are not us, even as they acknowledge us. And even as they do, they would rather ignore us, in many places thwart us, certainly laugh at us, even eliminate us. And the many who do this, are they who are family, community, colleagues, neighbours. We who will not go to war with them, run the rat race with them. We who will not avenge ourselves but seek to resolve conflict, find common ground, make peace.

I don't know who we are, but I am finding more of us. Are we a marginalised, widely dispersed, loosely coalesced, thinly populated conglomeration of not just thinkers but actively involved individuals who are there to balance, and on occasion, even tip the scales?

Who are these people, we who live right there among you?


I see people who are supposed to know better standin' around like furniture.

There's a wall between you and what you want and you got to leap it,

Tonight you got the power to take it, tomorrow you won't have the power to keep it.

- From The Groom's Still Waiting At The Altar by Bob Dylan in Shot of Love (1981)

No comments: