When I teach diversity to children I begin with colour.
I start with water tinted with the primary red, blue and yellow colours.
We know them as the primary colours because no other colour creates them, they are the source of all other colours to come.
We take a tube of each colour, and a clear water tube.
We then work from this space to mix each colour, and to add drops of water to create a new shade of each colour.
In this we create so many colours, not just through blending colours, but also by diluting colours. And we keep going until we see a rainbow of colour.
In this simple lesson we can see many things.
That whilst we are all very different we all come from the very same beginning.
So much so that we often cant even begin to think of where that beginning was, but somewhere along the line we cross, we meet, our lives connect and then blend again to make new.
In this we also can talk about not simply what is created, but where it came from.
We can see that whilst we have many pieces to us, we still stem from the same beginnings. And we can trace that back through our colours to find connections in so many ways.
It also shows us, that if we didn't have this diversity, this blending happening, nothing could have even begun. We would never have begun without the very first connection and blending.
Diversity is the beginning of life, it is at the very base of all life and a how we extend as community.
A new analogy takes a deeper connection to our beginnings.
I find another beautiful analogy perfect for creating a deeper picture in our mind of the beauty of diversity and its beginnings.
Think of a great field of rich earth— where the soil holds all of life - from this soil comes all forms of life - different flowers and trees and plants - all with their own scent colour and blossom - so different yet all from the same source - everyone of them has their roots in the same source - the same beginning - yet each becomes their own - even the soil itself is completely unlike anything that comes from it.
The plants here depict all walks of life. Men and women, animals alike - from the Earth - the same beginning source, we all grow and become from the very same essence in the beginning.
If we are seeking diversity we have to first accept we ARE diverse.
We can only accept diversity by seeing our own uniqueness. We have to see ourselves as different. See that we are all different. That we are each unlike the other not just in appearance but in so many ways.
Accepting this of ourselves is the beginning. The point at which we accept all of our own truth tells us how willing we are to open to others. If we cannot bare to look at ourselves in truth, we mirror and reflect this to those around - and we cannot bear their truth
Loving our diversity, how unique we are is essential to being able to open to the diversity of others.
In seeing ourselves as unique we then see each other as unique.
And at the same time this acceptance of difference asks us to look and find the ways in which we are also very very similar.
The threads that we carry of the same.
And these threads are common amongst all creatures, mankind included.
These threads are not of a ‘look’ but completely of a feeling and values and unity.
They see us wanting peace and harmony.
They see us wanting to nurture and care for all things
They find us wanting all to grow and that we can support each others journey in this.
In this diversity comes connection and community
We can only ever truly connect at a basic root level. From a space of our essence, our core, for this is the space in which we are alike. For the remaining pieces of us are so diverse.
So at this root level - the ground that creates us we would find a core belief as to the life we would want for ourselves and each other.
That we would seek for others as we seek for ourselves
That we find empathy for others in asking for it for ourselves
That we would find compassion as the first space of healing.
That we would unite over all of our existence thriving.
In this connection - a common connection - we then create community.
To gain community we find every piece of the whole. We bring together every part of the combined mass and we seek the inclusion of individuals representing more than one national origin, colour, religion, socioeconomic stratum, sexual orientation. We pull all of this together so that in our diversity we create the entire whole.
The paradox is that within the whole we ultimately find more of ourselves
Every generation has been built upon the one before it
Every generation builds upon the generation before it - in this way we stand upon the shoulders of our ancestors. We are built upon years and lifetimes and ages of our own becoming.
We are built upon love and emotions and fears and unity and compassion and tolerance and patience. We are all of these ingredients into one space of creation.
Our future depends upon our commitment to connecting as a collective
Some days the pain that is being endured in our world can only be described as intense. And the only way to overcome all the obstacles it will take for us to move forward, is to unite.
And the only way we can unite is through acceptance of our diversity.
That we find joy in our differences. That we find happiness and celebration in our unique cultures. That in observing all of us separately we actually find the potential to grow collective as the entire whole.
Without this - we will fail. It is almost as if we have come through a time when the seeds of darkness to breed discontent and disillusionment swept through in order to pull a part the pieces. In order to create chaos.
In putting it back together we realise we can only do so as a unit. In love with our diverse ways and in love with our own unique self and ready to stand shoulder to shoulder and take arms together and be one.
As a collective. A conscious collective.