Sunday, April 25, 2010

My First Cartoon

Part of my quest has been about integrating all of the things that İ am passionate about into my everyday existence. After graduating with my Bachelor's in art, İ began the art game, you know, making art and and putting it into places like galleries where it would be seen and hopefully purchased, allowing me to repeat the process over and over. As soon as İ had some initial success in that game, İ found that İ was quite dissattisfied with that game. Around the same time, a dear friend told me about an course in the Conflict Resolution program where she was studying for a Master's degree. The course was titled 'Art and Conflict Resolution'. İt was essentially an intro to the field of art therapy. This course, combined with my disenchantment with the art game İ was playing and my interest in social justice led me to enroll in this Master's degree program, where two years later İ graduated with a degree in conflict resolution, convinced, like many well-meaning fools, that İ could change things from within and chose to do so as teacher. İ got a berth on the SS New York City Board of Education and sailed away from Portland, Oregon for NYC's sunny shores. 8 years later, İ am still a teacher with a passion for social justice, but now living in Turkey. İn my life now, İ am circling back for another crack at the art game, retooled and refueled.
İ present here my first crack at a cartoon, which some will contend is political. İt is still a bit rough, but İ am pleased with it as a draft. Though dated now, it was prompted by the news that our Commander-in-Chief had brought home the gold and made us proud with the Nobel Peace Prize. My first reaction was, 'What for?'. All İ could think of were the announcements of more troops being sent overseas, more unmanned aerial attacks on villages in Pakistan and more money handed over to the military-industrial-media-congressional complex. As the nominations for such prizes come many months before the award is received, it seemed to me that the award was being given for the hope that well-paid speech writers were able to impart to the masses. Hope was just around the corner, where it seems she always hides, lying in wait for the next sucker to fall for her siren song. The fix is in. The deck is stacked. The House always wins. Now, to go on mixing my metaphors,you may ask, 'Would you like some more bitter with that coffee?'. To that İ answer, if it opens my eyes a bit wider, İ will take all you got.


  1. Yes. The continuation of war on behalf of the u.s. is disappointing from the president who was to offer hope.

    When I think of the mountainous regions of the Middle East, I identify with the nomadic tribes and small villages. People are living there. The war is killing some of those people and affecting all of the people living their lives peacefully.

    In more urban areas, the destruction of ancient artifacts is extremely disturbing to me in addition to the humans who are affected.

    Greg Mortenson's work with education in rural, mountainous regions is work that touches me. Directing energy toward the seeds of enlightenment is the work for everyone, and can be accomplished by each of us when we can be quiet and reflective, and then inspired. The inspired mind warms the heart and charges it with a new beat that then leads the body to action.

    When we allow ourselves to be distracted we lose our inspiration and can be diverted into any way, without bringing our mind along. Then anything can happen. It's not, "if you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything," - it's, "be quiet now. Let the inspiration." Not that we all have to be in a prayer modality every waking second of the day. But that is the root: the quietness. That's free. From there, smart choices can happen.

    So I'm talking about the political and personal. The manifestation of our fears, our unguided impulses then rationalized. So we can begin with quietness and navigate toward warmth and meaning, or we can remain in the mix of pinballs reacting to any random forces around us. Like free radicals creating a medium of disease, rather than a glow of being that emanates freely. Without a hiccup or being hooked into an entanglement. If there's a distraction, we can choose to return to quietness to find.

    Beginning with fear, then acting, we look around and without the heart or inspiration, the mind melds to what it sees, and begins to offer reasoning to explain it. That's backwards. That's what's happening in war.

    In addition to the quiet/ reactive kind of ignorance, there is the cultural and monetary ignorance that is more visible and disgusting. And we are getting used to it. We're past getting used to it. Feeding on distraction leads to mindlessness, fear & waste in addition to immense pain that hollows out our bones & pulls the life from our bodies. At any time it can all be shifted back to inspiration through tiny permutations of experience & reflection. Then, Zap! In an instant! Particles of thought...waves of thought...particles of thought...waves of thought... hmmm...

  2. I grok what you are saying about quietness and learning to be with our selves and our own thoughts, turning off all the distractions and tuning into the infinity within. Glad to know that you are a teacher, I take comfort in knowing that you are sharing such ideas with those around you. Thanks so much for your thoughtful commentary.

  3. Thank you for the inspiration. And now also a new book to read.