Halfway There Starting Right Here

Susan Creamer Joy

Susan Creamer Joy
Paris, Iowa,
September 30
Retired Domestic Space Cadet/Current Arbiter Of Midlife Dysfunction
Not often
Artist, Poet, Writer, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend, Lover, Seeker, Follower, Listener, Communicator, Found, Forgotten, Sainted, Sinner, Struggling, Sentient, Surviving...So far, so-so....... Unless otherwise noted, all of the artwork accompanying these posts was created by and is the property of the artist.


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JANUARY 11, 2011 8:43AM

It is Not "THEM." It is "US."

Rate: 71 Flag

It begins here:

"You get your temper from your father's side of the family, not mine."

"Whatever problems you have, you can blame them on your mother."


It progresses:

"If your generation were not so irresponsible and selfish, there would be stability in our future."


We acquiesce:

"Were you a jock in high school or a nerd, hipster,  Goth, R.O.T.C. or Jesus freak?"


Soon, we learn that there is safety and comfort in numbers:

"It is the Republicans that got us into this mess and the Democrats who will get us out.  Vote for our side."

And finally we decide that if we are right, than they must be wrong:

" What does he know?  He's just a fear-mongering Christian, a greedy Jew, a terrorist Muslim." 

"I'm glad I'm not one of them."


I don't believe in coincidence.


On 9-11-2001 Christine Green, the youngest victim of the Tucson shooting, was born into a world that was paralyzed by grief and polarized by fear.  


She was too young to choose sides or to comprehend the insidious emotion of hatred.  She simply was.


On  1-9-2011, Christine Green was taken out of a world that was paralyzed by grief and polarized by fear.  The individual numbers in those dates remained the same; only their sequence had changed.  


There is an urgent need right now to look beyond the obvious and read the signs of the times.   The date of her birth and of her death each add up to the number Five.  In Numerology Five is the number of change;  more specifically, change in the midst of chaos.


I don't believe in coincidence.


The drawing that accompanies this text was finished on the day of the shooting.  I had originally intended it to be for my son, an inmate, and for all of the men and women locked behind penitentiary walls.


But on that day, as I watched in disbelief while the various camps circled their wagons and hurled blame at one another,  I realized that we are the inmates and that as long as we swaddle our apprehensions in cunning layers of division and blame, we will remain sentenced for life to a prison of ignorance, rage and loss.


Inside each of us there is a wall bound together with a mortar composed of fear and pride whose bricks are the unexamined detritus of our prejudice.  They are those hard-baked thoughts that tell us that all Whites are imperious racists,  Blacks are inferior,  Hispanics are lazy,  Jews are greedy,  Christians are simple-minded,  Liberals are Socialist radicals, Conservatives are self-righteous,  Muslims are terrorists,  Atheists and Pagans are evil,  Homosexuals are depraved,  Foreigners can't be trusted, Priests are pedophiles,  Athletes are stupid,  Actors are superficial, Intellects are arrogant, the Young are naive, the elderly are obsolete,  the Humble are weak,  the Wealthy are indifferent and the Poor are ignorant.


But most of them just say, "You are wrong, and I am right."

I don't believe in coincidence.


And I don't want to believe that a little girl who was slain by a madman; a product of our collective indifference to love, which is the object of our humanity; on a date that mirrors that of her birth, both pointing us to the message that the separatist paradigms within tribes, classes, races, religions, political parties and ideological casts have got to changehas died in vain.


For my part I would rather be taken out of this world while attempting to love and understand my supposed enemy than to remain alive while attempting to prove that I am right.

Christine Green was only nine years old.  Nine, the sacred number of harmony, Divine Will, eternity, creation, completion and endings.  She was a ballerina, a daughter, a big sister, a friend, a student and a bright little harbinger of hope.


She was not one of Them.

She was one of US.

We ALL are.


I don't believe in coincidence.

It is time to wake up. 

Illustration text:  Freedom is a state of mind.  Peace cannot exist around you if it does not exist within you.  Forgive all, especially yourself.  Happiness is a choice.  The only way out is by going within.  Now matters.  Listen to the silence.



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Well said, Susan. You have provided the most level-headed explanation of what is happening in this country. The level of hate, animosity, vitriol, and rage is staggering. We have found the enemy and the enemy is US. R
Such incredibly beautiful words to match this amazing drawing.
Love is the only answer and love only comes when one listens enough to the stillness inside to remember it.
rated with love
I don't believe in coincidence either and everyone is guilty. If you speak hate you are one of them.
Rated with hugs
Oh, Susan, this is so beautiful and so exactly right. RRR
Hefty thinking, Susan, and eloquently stated, as always.
The convergences and coincidences threaded through this episode are not to be chalked up to randomness...There is a message. But them majority of human beings won't see it if it doesn't click with their own pet philosophies.
Wonderful post. It is the drawing with its text that blows my mind. Well done, Susan. Brilliant, actually.~r
She was born on 9/11/01? Gone 1/09/11... same day the drawing was finished. I'm flabbergasted Susan. Coincidence? No.. you are absolutely correct.

"There is an urgent need right now to look beyond the obvious and read the signs of the times. The date of her birth and of her death each add up to the number Five. In Numerology Five is the number of change; more specifically, change in the midst of chaos.

Did I say flabbergasted already?
I got chills reading your post and meditating on your art. You have articulated so compellingly what I pray about daily. Thank you. Have a blessed day. Rated with a loving embrace.
Both your painting and the accompanying words show an understanding of what we all are facing. You place a mirror up for all to look in...and I hope they do.

Thanks for this, no matter what it began as, it end us being universal.
I think you and I have been sourcing and processing this entire tragedy and the bigger picture from the very same place. Beautifully done.
Actions have consequences. So do words. To stone-age conservatives: Think ONCE before you rant.
Number nine is powerful, but I won't elaborate at length verbatim; so long as there's the US vs. THEM mentality existing there will always be hate. This little angel didn't die in vain.

The man is mentally ill. The media makes a mockery with its hypersensationalism.
The mantichora of hate has come upon us through violence in an attempt to bemean the masses. It will slough our interest away from all issues and divide us through petty fights in a blame game. The slothful humans of this world will then not be capable of tackling the previous problems of the world before this epoch. While Ikhnaton had Atenism to occupy the minds of his people, the leaders today have the promise of a change will never come under the current system.
Powerful. Maybe it will help me. I am one of them. I am angry, disgusted, disillusioned.
Reading posts like this feel good.
I love the words on your painting!
Hate breeds hate. Nothing mysterious about it. Your artwork and sentiments are just what we needed today.
Your illustration speaks volumes and your words add complete substance. We have to pay very close attention to what is right there in front of us or we are never going to get this humanity thing right. R
You are a wise woman, Susan, and so incredibly creative.
Thank you so much for this excellent post. I don't believe in coincidence either. Let us hope that this is indeed a sign of positive change.
You are absolutely filled with talent and heart.
In my heart, I am standing and applauding.
Remarkable, Susan. Remarkable Susan.
So well written. It gives me goosebumps and you know what that means...that this is the truth. I can never get over your amazing artwork. -R-
You take my breath away again, Susan. I wanted so much to point a finger, to blame someone for senseless violence against someone who fought for the things I believe in, but the truth is, I couldn't. It was one screwed up, out of his mind crazy kid with a gun. Whatever the contributing factors, the villain is his madness. I lashed out at my conservative friends. MY FRIENDS. They don't share the same ideals as I do, but they are good people who want the best for the country and the world. I am ashamed at how desparately I wanted to assign a deeper blame.

I'm shocked. I'm hurt. I needed to read what you wrote. Thank you so very much for writing it.
This helps me so much. I have been struggling to understand all of these horrific recent events and this really brings me clarity.
Very interesting about the dates of her birth and death.
No coincidences.
Your good heart and wisdom are a beacon in these confusing times.
Bless you Susan, bless you.
Stunning. In insight, words and painting. . .
I hear you and this is not coincidence either.
madness has many identities.
Beautifully, beautifully said, Susan. The heft of your theme requires two strong arms and a firm back to carry. And this line so perceptively anatomizes complacent thinking: "we swaddle our apprehensions in cunning layers of division and blame, we will remain sentenced for life to a prison of ignorance, rage and loss." (And "swaddle" is just the right word choice). We always seem to make the blame point elsewhere, don't we, and we need to bring that elsewhere home.
Eloquently stated from a loving point of view. The beauty of this piece is only outshone by it's wisdom...Thank you, Susan.
Interesting. While I have heard all of those prejudices you list by group, and I've heard slurs to all of the groups you mention, I've never heard the slur attached to the same group you've listed (except, priests are pedophiles).
You could play pin the slur on the group, and it'd all sound the same and be just as ridiculous... as we all can be just ridiculous sometimes.
Nice post.
thank you, we were on the same wavelength today...
Thanks Susan, yes I too believe she was there for a reason and she will be back. There is something very special about that little "OLD" soul.
Beautiful and very wise. And very, very hard to do.
Thank you, Susan. There's a lot to hold onto here.
Your right.
Interesting find in Numerology.
Love your painting!
Best Wishes,
"Inside each of us there is a wall bound together with a mortar composed of fear and pride whose bricks are the unexamined detritus of our prejudice. They are those hard-baked thoughts that tell us that all Whites are imperious racists, Blacks are inferior, Hispanics are lazy, Jews are greedy, Christians are simple-minded, Liberals are Socialist radicals, Conservatives are self-righteous, Muslims are terrorists, Atheists and Pagans are evil, Homosexuals are depraved, Foreigners can't be trusted, Priests are pedophiles, Athletes are stupid, Actors are superficial, Intellects are arrogant, the Young are naive, the elderly are obsolete, the Humble are weak, the Wealthy are indifferent and the Poor are ignorant."

When read all at once, all together, it exposes exactly how childish all these accusations sound -- because they are.

Superb work!

Wow. Incredible post. There is nothing left to be said and everything left to be learned.
I haven't read through comments so not sure if this has been suggested. Surely there are newspapers that would print this, hard copy and online. I posted to facebook and I see others have too, but really, this needs to be seen far and wide.
You've said it so beautifully - all that needs to be said, Susan. Now we need to do.
You know me and FB, so when I tell you I 'liked' this and it's posted on my acct, you know how much this means to me. ttyl.
"...fear and pride whose bricks are the unexamined detritus of our prejudice."
you write an eloquent argument, susan, and accompany it with a beautiful painting. i'm entranced by your artwork.
You have pegged it yet again. I applaud you.
Further, I would assert we are in a crisis dating back to when our misunderstandings took their form more often than not via war.
Let our minds be clear and remain so, and we are then transported by peace. Your artwork reminds me there is a forgiving nature I can access inward which I must attend to. I thank you for it.
I would love to see this in print elsewhere. Simply too good to be missed.
Your message is really perfect and I can see your 2011 will be very centered. Happy 2011 Susan!
Brillant post, Suze. Very powerful, and so well-written. You're right: it is time for change with a capital C. All kinds of change. Like you, I don't believe in coincidence. I like that you repeated that. It really is quite incredible.

I LOVED this post and the art work is really great. What amazing work! Oh, by the way, is that supposed to be Ben Kingsley? If so, I take it it's inspired by his role in Sexy Beast as the sleazy, bigotted mobster?

Triple, quadruple, quintupled... Rated!
I don't think there are any coincidences either ....and I think I am one of "them," by OS standards. There is no doubt significance in her birth and death dates, however, I think to say or imply that she is a martyr for "change," is a bit of a reach considering she was a child and the shooter was a lunatic. Possibly a more in depth look at the numbers surrounding her and even the shooter may give us more understanding?

I love your drawing/painting. Because so much of it has specific meaning, as you described in your post, I am wondering what the 3 sections of the glove represent?

A wonderfully peaceful post.
Amen. I walked into my classroom of 8 & 9 year olds on Monday morning and just wanted to hug them all.
Beautifully composed.

It's difficult to see 'Love' developing anytime soon when there is a constant stream of hate emerging from the different pulpits- Christian, Muslim and Jewish. And they are all supposed to have a common father, Abraham.
Pogo should have screamed it.
He was correct.
Susan, I joined Open Salon just to tell you how much I appreciate your blog. Someone I know shared this post on Facebook earlier in the week and I'm so glad to have been introduced to your art (written and drawn/painted).

Thank you.
I always click on your name to admire your artwork. Reading your words stirs me every time. I hope your son is doing okay.
One love, one family.
There aren't many original artists anymore but you have your own style.
I admire your talent, and I respect your opinions. However, at this moment in our history, I don't believe that those who share my political views can afford to be respectfully civil in the face of opposition that cares not a wit for truth, let alone civility.

The false equivalency of Left vs Right is perhaps best expressed by the fact that Keith Olbermann, a purveyor of at least one side of the truth, is gone from the airwaves, while Glenn Beck, a pathological liar, remains on a propaganda channel spouting hideous and dangerous filth. I'm told Nazi allusions are over-the-top; I'm sure people said the same in Germany in the Thirties.

Am I dividing into Us and Them? You betcha, and in my view, to do otherwise is to be tacitly complicit not only in bringing about the end of this country, it is as well to be tacitly complicit in bringing about the end of reason.