Having spent the holidays with family and friends and seeing how we all impact one another for better or worse, it reminded me of the ancient African proverb, “It takes a whole village to raise a child.” This phrase always made sense to me on a practical level, it is quite reasonable that it would take more than just your immediate parents or care givers to help raise a human being. An extended support network would provide different points of view, resources, experience, mentoring opportunities not to mention different and varied learning opportunities.
Looking at it on a deeper level, because that’s what I enjoy doing, we all share the responsibility to raise each other. Imagine if we became responsible for everything we saw and experienced. If we lived by the notion that in order to live a fulfilling life we fill the lives of others. Through acknowledgement, collaboration, sharing, non-judgment, helpfulness, generosity, consideration, understanding and feedback.
We are so more connected than we think or can mentally understand, yet we know it on a deep level. That is why we cry in movies, because we can feel a connection to the person or character on the screen. Why we feel moved when we see a child go hungry. When we feel something for someone we don’t even know who is half way around the world. Some of us are more moved than others, only because we allow ourselves the space to really feel. That is why we have feelings and emotions, these are the carriers that remind us we are one big fat freakin’ village. Take your place with pride don’t make excuses because you don’t look like, sound like, act like anyone else. No matter what you think, it takes a village and you are a vital member of it.
So when you are moved by something that taps into your feelings, act on it.