The Hellish & Holy Complexity of Being Human

It will take more than a sentence or sleepless night to describe and process the affairs unfolding before us each day, and yet we still try.

A sleek mission statement or catchy one-liner pasted to a social post or in an email has never been able to ease the confusion and bring clarity to our identity, our story and stance, or our business, and yet we still feel the need to do this for our neighbors across the street and around the globe.

A paragraph, this post, an essay, or even a book fails to offer any convincing explanation for any of it, the war, the hate, and the violence we continue to experience and perpetuate, and yet we still read and write them.

No matter the size or scope of a crisis, I feel the groaning in my heart to know- but, why? I want to understand so I seek out answers and experts, hunting viciously for the root causes and at the very least to find someone or something, even if it’s myself, to blame.

I’m eager to find the wound, fix the fissures, and layer salve and spells so we can all move forward, make progress, and be productive on what we deem important.

We humans are quick responders, rushing in with possible solutions and our self-proclaimed expert advice. Whether it’s a tiny prick of pain in our side, our child’s midday laments, or the horrors of conflict across the oceans, we seem incapable of sitting with what is for more than a split second.

And ultimately, we leave destruction in our wake, will it always be so?

This being human is about discovering our place amongst ravaged hearts, unhealed hurts, and perpetual grief. We must pitch our tents in the wilderness of inextricable loss, unexplainable violence, and general madness. I know it looks and sounds bleak, but could there be beauty if we dwell here together?

Our purpose isn’t to find, bring, or achieve peace and prosperity, to be praised for our ingenuity and creativity far and wide, or to retire sooner than later so we can finally have freedom.

Anger, animosity, pain, and sorrow are here to stay. If we are to live fully or at all we must find a way to weave them into our generative story of hope and wholeness.

So, if you feel all knotted up on the inside, perhaps it’s a sign you’ve tapped into your purpose- learning how to let yourself be tangled up with this intricate ecosystem of life together.

If you can’t form the words or find your flow, perhaps it means you’re ready to be with and listen to the nuance in every situation and season with quiet confidence and finally welcome the hellish and holy complexity of what it means to be human.

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