I am not strictly about the ugly nor the beauty of humanity. I’m about the truth of humanity as I see it and as it is. That truth encompasses every aspect of who we are collectively—good, bad and indifferent. Some days the sadness will show through and other days the beauty will show through. Always, it will be authentically how I see as well as how it is.

To ignore the ugly denies someone who is suffering the right and power to be freed from their oppressions and pain. Ignoring suffering to focus on beauty shows that what they feel doesn’t exist simply because I choose not to give attention to it. My not giving attention doesn’t stop the pain of a soul on the other side of Earth. My desire to live the life of a flower child who only “attracts” beauty does not feed a starving child or stop a bomb from dismembering a living being.

Equally, to ignore beauty denies someone who is enjoying the pleasures of life the right to allow love and light in. Ignoring beauty to focus on suffering says that what the lover feels is irrelevant in the face of pain. Not giving attention to beauty does not stop beauty from being real and a worthwhile experience to desire. Beauty is necessary in this world filled with ugly. It is all we have to keep us sane and creative.

Seek balance.

We should strive to give attention to all that exists so that healing can find its way into our near future. We shouldn’t judge harshly the person who sees and highlights mostly the beautiful or the ugly, telling them to see more beauty or look at the pain. They are on their journey, seeing what allows them to survive this existence and their “now”. Humble understanding is what we should reciprocally give to each other.

It all needs to be seen. If humanity intends to grow, neither reality can be overlooked simply because one or the other discomforts us, fills us with guilt or shields us from pain. Nothing of this life can be ignored, no matter how ugly or wonderful. At the same time, our judgement of the path of others serves only to show how little we’ve learned on our own path.

As we strive to additionally see the world as it is, not merely as we are, we should go within.Visit ourselves inside ourselves and find in that place the child that is both filled with wonder and awe at life, and also afraid of the bigness of existence and how fragile we are, how small we sometimes feel in the face of a power structure and the seemingly untouchable cosmos.

We are here together. Now. Tomorrow you will wake up and find that you are 80 years old and closer to exiting this planet. Will your existence revolve strictly around you? Or will there be a shared existence that provided balance to you and everyone around you? Will your awareness of everything that exists propel you to affect change?

It is all a question. The answer? I don’t pretend to know. All I know now is that I inhale and exhale and think and remember and feel. It all washes over me.

But I am free inside that part of me no one can see or touch. I see the landscape, the sun and the storm. I walk toward it all.