The Family of Man

Spring is officially here. The sheep are eagerly chasing after fresh green grass. The dogs and Beauty, the handsome  mule, are sleeping in the warm sun.

I was out working on the tractor and thinking about “the family of man”. I was thinking of how similar we are in our hopes and dreams, in our longings, in our drive to make things better, in our need for peace. Acknowledging that I have been more inclined to celebrate our similarities then to fear our differences, I thought back to moments that probably made that so. Wondering where the phrase “the family  of man” came from, I remembered a book of photography I had as a child. It was filled with hundreds of pictures of people the world  over depicting the wonder and the struggle of the human family and I cherished it.

From my own little corner of the world, in a pre-internet era, I was given the chance to see people like me, but different,  with their strengths and their weaknesses, with their joys and their pain and I was touched. I remember feeling proud of this family. I remember wishing the best for this family. And I guess that has not changed for me.

I think there is a kind of tuning fork we all have inside of us that gets stirred by the right stroke. What it takes to ring that chime is a different for each of us and what may make my heart sing may be of little value to you. So it cannot be, look at this, think like this, behave like this and you will feel it…Rather to feel my heart singing let’s me know your heart is capable of singing, too.

Knowing that brings me great happiness and provides a certainty reminiscent of this moment in time. Regardless of the trials of winter, the spring is here, again. And that my friends is a most powerful weapon. Knowing that the heart can sing, is singing, in the family of man, regardless of our hardships. There is no need to bemoan what is wrong; there is just enough time to celebrate what is.

 

 

From The Family of Man a collection of photography gathered by Edward Streichen: “There is only one man in the world and his name is All Men.
There is only one women in the world and her name is All Women.
There is only one child in the world and the child’s name is All Children.”
– Carl Sandburg, an excerpt of his exhibition commentary

 

Photograph compliments of my friend, Jannet Chang

 

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