REFLECTIONS: ART, HISTORY, & LIFE.

Welcome to this edition of my blog. I usually do not write about anything socially or politically sensitive. Today, my stance is not a political one, but a plea for us all to be more understanding, accepting, and loving. There are many things to be changed in this world for the betterment of all. With that said, I am passionate about art in all its forms, I love all people, and I dream for the day when we can all live together in peace.

Art reflects events and people. History is the story of those events and people. Each person has his or her own life history.

All forms of art are interpretative. Not everyone will like, agree, or understand certain art pieces. It is important to understand the message that the artist is conveying. Personally, I often have difficulty understanding some pieces of modern art, but I accept and respect the artist’s work.

I may not agree or support certain actions, social behaviors, or laws, but I will not harm another person, destroy monuments, nor burn buildings. I will follow the examples of such people as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, Gandhi, Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed, the Dalai Lama, Leo Tolstoy, Susan B. Anthony, Nelson Mandela, and Mother Teresa. These are just a few of the people in history who brought positive changes to the world in peaceful ways.

History is not always pretty. It is too-often filled with killings, torture, invasions, subjugation, and domination of the few over the masses. Yet, with all its faults, history has produced some of the world’s greatest artists which arose out of the Middle Ages (Michaelangelo, Bernini, Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, to name just a few). Inventions and medical advancements historically have come from various countries answering the needs of people.

In 3500 BC, the wheel was invented
In 1600 BC, modern alphabet invented
In 20 AD, printing was invented
In 105 AD, the first use of paper.
In 1088 AD, the first university was founded.
In 1215 AD, the sealing of the Magna Carta
In 1509 AD the watch was invented.
In 1825 AD rocket steam locomotive built, the start of railroads.
In 1905 AD, Einstein’s theory of relativity was published.

I believe that we are to treat everyone with respect, dignity, and kindness. All religions teach the basic concept of the Golden Rule:

Buddhism: Treat not others in ways that for you would find hurtful.
Christianity: Do to others as you would have them do to you; \
Confucianism: Do not do to others what you do not want to be done to yourself.
Hinduism: Do not do to others what would cause pain if done to you.
Islam: Not one of you truly believes until you wish for others
what you wish for yourself.

Judaism: What is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbor.
Native Spirituality: We are as much alive as we keep the earth alive.
Zoroastrianism: Do not do unto others whatever is injurious to yourself.

It is important for me to ask myself, “what am I doing to help others? am I respectful of those with different opinions? do I not harm others?” In the song, Imagine by John Lennon the lyrics are my mantra:
Imagine all the people living for today…Imagine all the people living life in peace…Imagine all the people sharing all the world…You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one, I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.

I welcome your comments. Thank you, Karen Ingalls the dreamer.






FATHER, DAD, PAPA, POPS, DADDY, ETC.

It makes no difference what name he goes by, a father’s role is the same. In his book, Iron John, Robert Bly uses a Grimm Brothers fairy tale to describe what it means to be a man and a father.

The more involved a father is in his child’s life, the more likely his child will be a responsible member of society. In my opinion, three important roles of a father are to be a protector, leader, and teacher all with love in their hearts.

Studies on father involvement and child well-being found “significant associations between positive father involvement and offspring well-being…” (Paul R. Amato and Fernando Rivera, “Paternal Involvement and Children’s Behavior Problems,” Journal of Marriage and the Family 61 (1999): 375-384.) There are many cases where the biological father is absent due to divorce, death, or single parenting by choice. Yet, daughters and sons need a mother and a father or male role-model to provide important psychological and emotional development.

“A loving and nurturing father is as important for a child’s happiness, well-being, and social and academic success as having a loving and nurturing mother.” (The Importance of Father Love: History and Contemporary Evidence,” Review of General Psychology 5.4 (2001): 382-405.) In the television series, This is Us, the father is portrayed as a sensitive, strong, loving man who teaches and listens to his children. Despite his untimely death, his influence continued in their lives.

Fathers spending regular time alone with their children translated into children who became compassionate adults. (Richard Koestner, et al., “The Family Origins of Empathic Concern: A Twenty-Six Year Longitudinal Study,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 58 (1990): 709-717). A common activity between fathers and sons is throwing a baseball to each other. In the movie, The Natural this is an activity when life and personal growth were taught. I know fathers who took their daughters out for a meal, on a short get-away, or a few hours spent together at a sporting, cultural, or music event.

On this Father’s Day, let us focus on the traits of a kind and loving father, who protects, leads, and teaches his children. Let’s bring these traits to our own family issues, our community’s problems, and our country’s challenges. Martin Luther King, Jr., Charles Darwin, Theodore Roosevelt, Thomas More, Nicholas II, George Bush, Sr, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama are just a few of many who were and are fathers that exemplify how a man needs to fill the role of fatherhood.

It is important to celebrate those in our lives who have been our fathers or positive role-models every day. Let us honor their roles not by just buying them neckties, shirts, books, etc., but by living our lives with dignity, compassion, peacefulness, and love.

Thank you for spending time reading this tribute to fathers. I welcome and appreciate your comments.