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Imagination and color; piece from a 10-year-old me
Being inspired to be who our younger selves thought we could be
Recently my dad was going through a bunch of boxes at his house, and he found a journal I wrote it when I was ten years old. I read through a few of the entries I wrote, and I found a particular one pretty interesting, in that it is very insightful for a 10-year-old. I read it over and decided I still liked the ideas in the entry, so I wanted to share it with all of you. My hope is you simply enjoy reading it, but I hope that perhaps this idea inspires you to write something, or do some type of gorgeous artwork. So here it is:
Disclaimer: I'm editing for spelling, so the original spelling is not what it is here
"Right now as I drift off to the land of imagination I am holding the most wonderful box ever to be seen 'cause here in this box is anything I want there to be. I could have animals, invisible things, drugs, war. But now in this box there is color, all the colors of the world. I myself love to paint, draw, color and mold so color is perfect for my box. The first person (me being second) to have the box put war, hate, and violence in this box to hide them away forever so my colors are dark and gloomy instead of light and energetic, but that's okay with me. Color to me is a special magic with the power to kill anything I want killed like hatred, unfairness and racism. Colors are what I call bright ideas. Colors also help me and other friends and family. But that's the world of imagination. I fear what other people would put in this box."
This piece still appeals to me because of the positivity of my projections when I wrote this. There is a certain kindness in these lofty goals of trying to rid the world of racism, unfairness and hatred with the "magic" of colors. There is something sweet, provocative and inspiring in the concept of using the deep beauty of color to fight against the extreme ugliness of racism, hatred, and unfairness. I am aware we could never actually rid the world of unfairness, not in the way that we could hypothetically hope to rid the world of racism and hatred. But it's somewhat awesome to me that the younger me had these ideas, and in some way felt these negative things could realistically be abolished.
I don't want to say it's due to some sort of sweet, or cute, innocence or naiveté that a 10-year-old would realistically think that in some dimension of reality that things like racism could be abolished, because I think that takes away from the sincerity of the concept. Yes children generally have much more optimism and are able to state very lofty goals because they haven't been made cynical by the reality that things like racism are deeply rooted in so many people, and that becoming a firefighter is not something someone does with ease--though it is quite possible. What I'm getting at is that it's important to look back on the things you once thought possible and not just throw away those ideas by telling yourself "oh I was so young then. I didn't know what I was talking about." Adults tell children all the time that they can be whatever they want to be. That may sound like a lie to people who are cynical. But what is the lie in it? Perhaps we ourselves didn't do everything it took to succeed in our deepest dreams and aspirations, but that doesn't mean we run around telling kids, "yeah you may want to be a governor some day so you can help amend the homelessness problem, but just so you know, it's really really hard to do that so you probably should choose to shoot for something easier," so why should you shun your own ideas from when you were younger? If you could talk to your younger self, you would (I hope) only have loving, supportive things to say to yourself. You wouldn't put your younger self down and tell yourself how stupid you are for having goals of trying to stop world hunger or at least a hunger issue in your home town or state. And getting back to color, colors have all sorts of powers that many of us are completely unaware of. Subconsciously, colors affect how we feel, how we think, and they do it all the time. Check out this link to get an idea of just how powerful colors can be: http://changingminds.org/disciplines/communication/color_effect.htm I realize using color alone can't rid the world of racism; you can't feed the world with pink, yellow, and burgundy. Obviously there would have to be some intermediary steps from getting from color use to getting more people the food they deserve. But it's not anywhere near impossible to think that the use of color, in the appropriate context, used correctly, could inspire people to help those who need it and inspire them to help in the way they can. To quote myself, colors truly are bright ideas...they influence people to feel and think in certain ways, without them consciously realizing it. A fellow hubber also wrote on the power of color: http://sarahredhead.hubpages.com/hub/The-Power-of-Color-Colors-and-Their-Meanings.
I didn't just write this to say "Hey look how cool my thinking was when I was ten!" I shared this at first because there was something inspiring to me about it, and I thought it was written well, but also that the ideas in it were just really cool and imaginative. But I now that I've been writing through my thought process, I have also come to see that we can learn so much from our younger selves, to remind ourselves of the things we thought we were capable of before "reality" set in, before we got stuck in our lives of daily routine and just doing what we need to do to get by. As a species, we aren't going to get much done if we each only do what we need to do for us. That's also quite selfish. If you can do more than what you are currently doing, then you should be doing more. It won't just help others who need the assistance you can give them (and I'm not just talking about donating money). The experience of putting yourself out there and realizing you are so much more than what you think you are, doing something you didn't think you could do and then accomplishing it....that's more powerful than you could ever know. And accomplishing your dream may be in the form of helping someone else accomplish theirs. Just think how amazing accomplishing that goal would be?
I personally have come to a place in my life where I feel deeply stuck because I have yet to really make something of myself, to put my life to actual good use where I'm living and thriving for the greater good and not just for myself. I know I'm capable of more because I have done more. Part of writing this piece is the "doing more," trying in some small way to positively contribute to society. But I know I can do so much more, and I think you know that you can too.