I read about the death of Jonah Lomu the New Zealand rugby player with interest. I cannot write I have sadness as I did not know him. His manager commented “The world will be a poorer place without him” Will it? I hope not. Surely the world will be a better place because of the influence his career and life has had upon those who desired to follow his path, in a sport he and they love?
Its tough to face the truth when looking at difficult emotional situations. I watched a friends four year death, Sam’s fortitude was an inspiration to any one who saw her valiant fight. I remember a friend who lost her three year old child in a Christmas Eve car accident, the memory of the white coffin cannot be erased. I felt a emotional heartache on those occasions, for the rugby player there is nothing. I am careful not to follow a tide of opinion which overwhelms the reality of the situation. Its seems to me there are many who believe one has to show grief, almost as if the display of emotions is imagined to be the right thing to do. And by doing ‘the right thing’ one conforms to the requirements of society. I do not wish to be a conformist. I wish to live within my truth.
So why don’t we have a world wide and public display of grief for every child killed by the drones bomb? Is the sacrifice of the child in the pursuit of freedom and civilisation justified by the bombing? One could argue it is if we learn by it. The essay could end here if I continued with this string of thought. Let me turn it around.
In the TV Show CSI Miami the detectives says ‘I’m sorry for your loss’ – Now everyone says ‘I’m sorry for your loss’ Are they? Do I want a sorrowful police officer investigating my friends murder? No, I do not! I would like a clear minded non emotional, intelligent investigator to bring the criminal to justice. I remember being interviewed by two so called police officers many years ago. Their personal feelings came into play during the interview. I could tell neither one liked me, my educated mind was a match for their bull like methodology and I’m certain they would have found a way to charge me with the crime if my alibi had not been so water tight. These two hero’s of justice had an effect, as even today I’m unable to trust the police. ‘I’m sorry for you’re loss’ It reminds me of the two spiteful comedians who did more to propagate crime than solve it. I do not believe the sentiment. In the same way I do not feel I have to be sorry for the death of a stranger. Its nothing to do with conformity. Its everything to do with my personal integrity.
An unknown man or woman dies the family and friend grieve. Is the unknown loss less important than the public bereavement? When a celebrity dies many grieve. Statements like ‘The world will be worse off without him’ ‘She will never be replaced’ ‘One of the most inspiring actresses who ever stood on a stage’ How is this relevant to the tens of thousands who mourn them? Who or what is the ‘star’ to the ‘stranger’ fan? A clear minded reader may know the answers.
There is but one death there is no certainty after the final breath. We are certainly remembered for our lives and how we lived them. The reality is NOW, this moment, this life, this journey. To contemplate that there is anything other than ones personal reality seems to me to be a time wasting exercise. When Amy Winehouse died, I did not think, ‘What a tragedy’ I though,’What a fool’. I do not need to understand the whys of her addiction. If the opportunity arrives to talk to an addict I would use the singers death as an example ‘Look drug and drink abuser this is the real possibility, there is no fame in this woman’s death only a lesson for you to learn’ Compassion? For a drunken addict? Not in my reality. Are we born equal? Well, I do not wish to be on the level of fools who had everything and abused the privilege.
The artist reveals his imagination through his images. Placing a man in the scene where there was non. Painting a woman’s face with hypnotic eyes. A cubic family in Rubic like unsolvable puzzle of colours. An astute viewers mind wonders about what the artist is portraying. Often the artists work is exposing, even betraying the inner mind and the artist who does not have to think about how to express his ‘world‘ is often the one who excels. Do the most powerful creators of visual and vocal expression thrive upon intuition? I believe they do. Do the great creators concern themselves with technique? Not as much as one would think. What is worth considering is the artists mind is a cannibal cooking pot. It has to be because he or she will often consume the ‘normal’ ideas, ideals, morals, beliefs and protocols of his fellow humans.
Turn life into a story…
Jack Lewis cried as he listen to the news. Jack remembered watching the player in the final between his country and the opposing team. He’d hated the six footer as he had been instrumental in his countries defeat. On the way home that day Jack’s inner being had been awakened. His hate had turned to admiration and then adoration. He now understood the warrior, the soldier, the hero. His life had changed because of a man he would never meet.
Jack read every book he could about the warrior. His bedroom walls were covered in framed posters and photographs of this one man. The images had to be framed, blue tac or tape would be an insult to the status of this god of the game. These images were blurred through his tears and his emotions had turned to anger, just as they did when his mother died. Only this time, the anger would become explosive, a volcano about to erupt.
He made it to work and he did not like the way San Verit looked at him. He’d never got on with that bastard. Jack and his hero had exercised every day, keeping fit, eating the right food, training to win. No, not together, Jack knew the player would never know him, but his personal fitness was a spiritual connection to the man who lived on the other side of the planet. And that bastard San Verit with his drug taking, girl abusing, lazy waste of life abused every second of his existence. Jack could see Verit was pleased to see him in the pain of grieving for his hero.
“Sorry for your loss Jack” What did the bastard just say? Jack looked at the skinny addicted wimp. “Sorry for your loss Jack” Did he see a sneering lift at the corner of his mouth? Verit walked between the rows of racking. Nine, one ton pallets of soda crystals in each section. His foot pressed on the pedal of his yellow Caterpillar forklift, he would be careful not to be in the view of the warehouse cameras. The forks sliced through the securing bolts at the bottom of the racking post and he knew how a lumberjack felt as the tree wavered just before it tumbled to the ground. Verit would be taken down to where he belonged.
The waster died exactly one hundred and eighty seconds after being crushed by the racking and the soda. Jack knew it was one hundred and eighty seconds because he counted as the teenager died in his arms. At the inquest the verdict was accidental death, the coroner recommended the company should be fined for its lack of safety standards. Outside of the court Jack walks slowly over to the weeping mother and whispers “I’m sorry for your loss”.
Is man born equal? I doubt it. We can look up to or down upon those around us. The beliefs of superiors or inferiors prove the inequality. The artist, writer, songwriter, photographer cares nothing for status. The artist will take advantage of news, sorrow, pain, ways of life, ways of death. The creator must take advantage of everything which enters his or her mind. And with concentration without effort (intuition) will expose their inner being.