“Remembering Ourselves Home”

“Instead of being taught to protect yourself from things or people who might do you harm, you may have learned to distrust your own feelings, boundaries, and reactions. If you grow accustomed to overriding your responses, as you get older, you stop being able to recognize intrusions and violations. Over time, you may have delayed reactions to poor behavior if you were taught to be accommodating above all else. You may have even found yourself dwelling on moments in which you wish you’d said or done something differently. But having a wounded instinct is becoming more common as a direct result of our disconnected culture. The more we live in virtual realities, where our connection to others is mediated by technology, and the more we subscribe to a human-centric way of life, the less we are in direct conversation with each other, our own bodies, and the natural world around us. As we fall out of touch with the physical world, our impulses for even basic things like hunger, thirst, and touch are ignored for long periods of time, often resulting in mental distress and physical disease.

I believe we have more than enough creativity to solve the problems of our times, but we have to make a perilous trek into the wilderness within to reclaim it. There is a stand of the undeveloped jungle, a place of indigeneity within each of us, that can never be domesticated. It is a borderless land, beyond personality and convention, even beyond thought, where pure creativity arises. Like the signature song of a tropical bird, the spiraling of an arbutus tree, the evening scent of a jasmine bush, there is an essence in each of us intended to be expressed. Few make the trek into this creative wild because the path requires great vulnerability. To come into our true originality, we must surrender the layers of numbness we use to protect our hearts.”

Excerpt from “Belonging: Remembering Ourselves Home” by Toko-pa Turner

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