All I Can Offer You is the Air Cupped in My Hands
We own the air, yet many are afraid to breathe. We must reclaim the air that enters our lungs. One way to do this is to allow our brains to flower. We own our brains, yet many of us do not feed our brains an intellectual identity, a philosophical, or metaphysical identity. That identity has been lost or beaten. It is not that we can’t think or care about these intense subjects. But for many, they have been whipped out of us. History, politics, economics have whipped our humanity out of us. We have traded in our profound power for superficiality and pettiness. I do not have all the answers for this dilemma. But I feel a purpose, a truth that is punching its way out of me. The truth to live a life of the mind, that is something we must respect and reintroduce in ourselves. Who says we are only dishwashers or gangmembers or “normal” people or safe, educated people with degrees? We cannot allow ourselves to be limited by anything. Imagination is a reality. Just look in the mirror for proof. You invented yourself!
We must extract the artistry from each other and create new ideas and identities for ourselves and our communities because if we do not, we will continue to allow others to create them for us. We must become entrepreneurs of the mind and give each other intellectual wealth. With ideas, passion, and purpose, it is much easier to sustain suffering and to hope as well.
“Of This I’m Sure” by the 70’s soul group The Main Ingredient. We would sing this song, and we knew the answers because of it: “I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m going on.” I am writing the new book, Bone Mountain, which is now 70 pages in length. I am teaching and learning as always from my best teachers: my students. I am doing more interviews, presentations, and proposals for funding for new projects and new community empowerment. I imagine a non-profit organization that does not simply promote cliché education. But I predict a new type of organization that promotes an intense intellectual identity for people, especially those who are disenfranchised. We should understand exactly why the Maya are genius, learn about and discuss the abstraction and concreteness of the concept of time. We should read Garcia-Marquez, Dostoevsky, Faulkner, and Hong-Kingston. We should listen to international university lectures regarding business and politics. We should dance 🙂 It should not be a sin to desire an enlightening. I am not here to argue to you that the truth shall set you free. On the contrary, the truth many times is a torture! The truth is very hard. Let us embrace our difficulties and learn to love them. A life of the mind is not the complete answer, but it is a process for us to feel life, both the positive and negative aspects of it.
The air is not our enemy. Reclaim your fundamental right to breathe, to breathe your own true life.
Benjamin Bac Sierra