News, Updates, Musings
“A community that is growing rich and seeks only to defend its goods and its reputation is dying. It has ceased to grow in love." ― Jean Vanier
In an interview with the late Genesis P-Orridge, they said so eloquently that humanity is but one organism. If one part of the human organism is hungry, the other parts work to pass food down to the starving parts, if another part is sick, the other parts carry down medicine. It's a belief I strongly share with Genesis. More than any other vision of community, Gen's was one that always made the most sense to me. Why would we ever think we were as singular as all that. Surely, I cannot do or go alone.
I have always thought language to be that vessel of crossing towards our healing homes. What is language if not a blanket thrown over chaos, disorder, meaninglessness? Give words to your pain, indeed. But such words we built together. It seems to me a strange sort of community built around words (all communities are!) but somehow forgetting to pass along what is missing and needed in the other.
For so long people gathered at kitchen tables to tell each other stories. It was the thread that held together the past and the now. But it was also the presence of bodies, warm laughter, a shoulder to cry on. Communes carry the memory of this also: to be with each other is to be for and through each other.
Today, so much of community gets defined by the most superficial of ties. Contests, lists, ranking, popularity, dopamine hits, but without the intimacy that makes community responsive and responsible to each other, the organism suffers a chronic soul fatigue.
A body in pain is what languages reaches out to. We are not here for ourselves. Alone, we know nothing. But together, we know everything by the sensibilities that tell us what part is being left out, what part is in need.
What is community? "A neighbor is not he whom I find in my path, but rather he in whose path I place myself, he whom I approach and actively seek.”― Gustavo Gutiérrez
Yes, but how seek out a thing of which we are already are? The way we are for each other is the measure of soul in our approach. When we come to the end of whatever this life is, the only thing that will have mattered is how much of everything we carried down the line for the parts [of us] each other, that needed it most.
Step into what you already are. Do for others the good that only you can do. There is a kind of special work we are called for, language demands it. Let a poem be a kitchen table again. Listen for the laughter. Be for each other, as if there were but one, and all of it: us.