The newborn – is who?
Let the adult mind journey into the mind of the infant.
What promises are present? (Who has arrived?)
What unique personality? What unique sensitivities, talents, and interests, now seek to develop? (What will become of them?)
What promise arrives among all infants that is not unique? What common humanity? What is the sameness of tenderness? (Where does it go?)
Let the adult mind, in open awareness of infant promise, consider:
Where does the promise go? What happens to it?
When did I learn of injustice? Who showed me this?
When did I learn I have more value (or less) than another? Who taught this?
Those who taught me – they, also, began in infant promise. Who taught them of injustice, of valuing one over another?
So many beliefs coat the grown-up infant’s promise – cover them like an armor, like thin layers of hard shellac built up across time. We hold beliefs in value-over, value-against, in cause to mistrust. Beliefs in hoarding while another is denied. We learn need to withhold information. Need to judge. Need to cast blame and shame. Need to assign and assume roles by gender, and by hierarchy. Need to calculate advantages against another. Need to market, to sell/buy the essentials: wellness, learning, food, shelter. Need to serve and nurture ‘an economy’ before serving and nurturing one another. We insist there is need to be brutal on occasion.
We need to not see that someone, somewhere, is not in position to participate. We need to ‘close heart’ and ‘not ask too many questions’ against status-quo. ‘Collateral losses of life and humanity’ become irrelevant, and eventually become irritation.
All these beliefs and needs – create the self’s need to be anxious. Self then needs to conquer anxiety, must prove its achievement.
Inside our armor minds we hope to confirm: “I am among those who have lived well.”
(We ignore implication – the comparative “among those who have lived well” informs us logically – some among us must not “have lived well”. Did we learn to shut them out? How? What have we done that holds us at small tribe ‘us/them’ rather than finding our way to the universal ‘me/everyone’ Tribe Humanity?)
What happens as the infant moves through social beingness into adulthood? We – who are reading this – were once the ‘newly arrived’. What happens to the nurturing human community that might shape our experience, and welcome us as joyful contributor? What happens to delightful talent, interest, and unique potential of so many, carried-in at birth, yet unrealized?
Buckminster Fuller: I Seem To Be A Verb, (1970) I live on Earth at present, and I don’t know what I am. I know that I am not a category. I am not a “thing”, a noun. I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process, an integral function of the universe.