Jan 15, 2022Liked by Mike Murawski

The older I get, the more I HATE change for myself, but not necessarily the actual changes that currently engulf us at this particular point in time. Frankly, I was prepared to ignore this post, since I didn’t believe I had anything to say about change. I have been through so many changes in my life that I often forget how those changes affected me and my perception of those around me. Thanks for reminding me that ALL of us are “agents of change”, whether we want to be or not.

First of all, my body and my mind change from one second to the next. I cannot stop time, nor the advent of change (aging). I will not be the same person in 10 minutes that I am now.

Secondly, the language we speak is in a constant state of flux, and thus, through language we are constantly exposed to change. Read a book written in 1920. Compare it to a book written in 2020. My children learned different meanings for words and a different syntax than I did and my grandchildren will do the same. For example, what does “tranny” mean to you?

Thirdly, and most importantly, great societies, great cultures, etc., like the Roman Empire, extinguish themselves because of their unwillingness to accept “change” as a necessary part of existence. The Roman Empire did not die at the hands of the barbarians, as Pat Buchanan would have us believe. In fact, it started to die as soon as the Roman Senate installed a Caesar, believing that this act would stop “change” from occurring. Too bad, so sad. It obviously didn’t work. Change is inevitable. Deal with it.

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Jan 7, 2022Liked by Mike Murawski

Mike, thank you so much for this powerful messaging as we experience this particular moment of transition. The date change from 2021 --> 2022 always feels so arbitrary, but I value it as an opportunity to mark a transition. I am very drawn to your ideas around care being not just people to people, but people to planet. The quote you added from Loretta Pyles resonates with me right now, as I just led a conference workshop with the Teaching For Change Black Lives Matter Curriculum Fair. My focus and goal during the workshop was to use the artwork of Alma Thomas and the natural environments she painted as a way to foster empathy among place, rather than people. It was powerful to be with a group of educators all thinking about meaningful spaces/places/natural spaces for them and to sit with that space and explore it through color. I am repeating my workshop for the national Teaching For Change Black Lives Matter Curriculum Fair in a few weeks, so I am going to look into Pyles' book in case there might be ways that concepts from the book can further strengthen the connection between empathy, place/planet, and justice. Thank you again for taking such care in creating words as a bridge in this moment of transition. -Dena Rapoport (National Gallery of Art, DC)

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