I went to lunch last week with a subscriber to this newsletter, Steve Wangh.
An artist, writer, actor, teacher, and do-gooder, Steve and I had a fascinating conversation about the current state of the world.
This phrase he said…it keeps knocking around in my brain:
“Art allows us to bear complication.”
That struck me...that we need to bear complication.
Give space, weight, and time to the things that are complicated, and not to go in with any preconceived notions, about anything.
And then yesterday, I had the pleasure of randomly running into the one and only Nancy Cranbourne (our local Jazz Dance Diva of Boulder County) and we ended up having lunch and that conversation is still knocking around in my brain too:
This notion of understanding and empathizing with those we don’t agree with, who sit far across the aisle, and how complicated THAT IS.
I recounted a time, about seeing Desmond Tutu speak…I mentioned this a few newsletters back:
He said that the idea of all of us being connected isn’t an oovey groovy one.
It’s actually real, something about quantum physics and string theory maybe?
That until we realize we are connected to everyone (Donald Trump included) on this quantum physics and string theory level, we aren’t going to move forward in a revolutionary way.
My brain sort of understands this, but my body certainly does not. Nancy and I ate chicken burgers and contemplated that abyss between the brain and the body...how to bear that complication.
We had this incredible conversation about the word “pretty” in class yesterday:
What is pretty, who likes pretty, who doesn’t like pretty, who gets to define what pretty is, and who doesn’t.
That turned into what’s weird, what’s not weird, how weird can be off-putting to some and not to others.
That conversation got complicated, and everyone who participated "bore" it, quite lovingly I thought, even though nothing got answered.
On the eve of the Jewish New Year (which I totally forgot about until a friend reminded me on Monday to eat apples and honey tonight) your dance mission is to place yourself in a complicated conversation where you find yourself coming away from the interaction surprised, and maybe even newly formed in your ideas and perceptions of the world.
And then embed yourself in a dance that is not necessarily “easy” but that is meaningful, and dare I say, complicated. The kind of dance that gives you something to consider that you may not have considered before. The kind of dance you may not fully understand, yet are intrigued enough to keep going anyway.