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Tuesday, December 08, 2020

Finding the big picture


Regarding conflicts, often times the problem is that there's just not enough space and resources for all involved. When I think of old conflicts, such as the messy divorce and trajectory of my parents and step-parents, I try to imagine a larger space in which they exist.

I try to create enough space in my mind that each person can have their own cohesive existence. Each one of them has a story and is part of a family. I trace those families back to Los Angeles, Canada, Hungary, Armenia, Bessarabia and more.

There is immigration that is a new start, but there is also continuity in religions: Judaism and Christianity, artistic continuity of architecture, cultural traditions of cooking and languages.

There are tragedies both personal and on larger scales. The Jews and the Armenians. Pogroms and genocide. But drawing out even further, there are empires and nations collapsing and forming. 

Judea and Israel, Canaan. The Assyrian empire and the Seleucid empire. Biblical narratives of judges, then kings: first temple, then second temple, then collapse and diaspora.  Resistance to Christianity and tenacious survival via consistency of literature and practice.

Likewise, the Ottoman empire, growing then collapsing and forming Turkey. Armenians caught in between.

Drawing back this far, one sees a bigger picture, and perhaps some actions, while locally selfish and inscrutable at times, sit within a larger context that holds them and provides a certain kind of explanation.

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