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  • Betty Girardeau

The Lessons Are There To See


There is such beauty in diversity. It is something we know and understand by just looking at the natural beauty of the earth. Successful art, music, and, yes, even recipes, are good because of the balanced use of color, sound, and ingredients. Few of us would be happy for long in a sterile environment. Psychologists emphasize the importance of variety to stimulate the growing brains of children. And each of us knows how awful it is to be bored. Healthy individuals are usually ones who make sure they have a variety of interests and things to do. But the "ying" to this "yang" is a fear and distrust of things and people who are different from us. Obviously, there are times when this is important, even necessary for self-preservation. But I tend to think that some of us allow fear and distrust to have more power over us than they should. How do we find a healthy balance between the appreciation of diversity and the fear of difference? That's a million dollar question which has been asked over and over for centuries with many people suggesting various ways of dealing with the dilemma of finding balance in our lives. John Heywood, a 16th century playwright, musician, and author penned many witticisms that still have merit for us today. His proverbs frequently show an understanding of how difficult it is to be human. Today as I was thinking about the necessity of diversity and how events in recent weeks particularly have shown how difficult it is sometimes to embrace it, I remembered one of Heywood's quotes that I think is one of which we may need to be reminded. "There are none so blind as those who will not see. The most deluded people are those who choose to ignore what they already know".

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