Change is in the air. We put it there to breathe it in and invite its fallout to permeate our every cell. We are asking for it in every structure of the world we live in. Education, politics, banking, medicine, environment, thought and science are in all of our prayers and pleas to change, evolve and embrace the whole picture and person.
The Renaissance period we read about contains numbers of prolific thinkers, poets, painters. Few of them were recognized as leaders before their time. Few were recognized as leaders at all. None would make the Fortuitous 500 in their day. Their ways of thinking, writing, and painting broke most of the rules and rewrote the future for those who would study their legacies and begin realizing the brilliance of their teachings.
Leonardo, Michelangelo, Copernicus, Brunelleschi, William Byrd, Shakespeare, Marlowe, Francis Bacon, Galileo, are a handful of change makers. Reading about their personal lives is like reading tales of upheaval, misunderstanding, frantic and frenetic spurts of expression, destitution, and depression.
How did they cope with their lives? How did they continue pulling their creations from blank canvases while many shook their heads at such insanity? What drove them to give of themselves sometimes giving their very lives? How did they continue their devotion to callings that were unseen by the masses?
If they were born today, what would we do with these kinds of people? How would we handle them? How would our current systems of education handle them? Could they write a business plan, be considered for a business loan, have the credit history to qualify for a home mortgage? How would science categorize the worlds they paint, write about and lived in? What would we label them? Altruistic, Artistic, Autistic, ADD?
Who might these “types” be among us that are coming in large numbers into our lives, homes, schools, and systems? What might they bring that we aren’t seeing, aren’t ready for, and aren’t ready to change towards? Their minds are misunderstood, as shown in A M Baggs’ YouTube (watch the whole video). Their spurts of expression are difficult, sometimes terrifying, misunderstood and painful. Their and our frustrations run deep.
What I’m suggesting is that we could be in the midst of that change we are all asking for. Renaissance in itself is defined as a "rebirth" or a "reconstruction". The broken and decaying systems of education, politics, banking, medicine, environment, thought and science could be signs that a massive renaissance is underway. Like a season that comes whether we are ready or not, change is here. We’ll choose when we’re ready to shed the layers of old systems. We’ll choose how to prune the old systems allowing for new ideas to awaken in full bloom. And in this season of change, each of us gets the choice to “see” these explorers, pioneers, visionaries dressed as altruistic, artistic, autistic, ADD, types. While we’re deciding when to choose to see the change happening around us, they’ll continue pulling their creations from blank canvases and wait until we see the brilliance, rebirth and reconstruction they may be bringing, ready or not.
As the Founder of The Arts Organization, TAO Metaversity, CEE, Artist Studio Suite, Wendy Adams Mendenhall focuses on experiential education to (re)awaken the Artist in all of us. With a background in graphic design, corporate communications, retail, and an ongoing "passion for observation," she works with teachers, authors and artists, to further the recognition and utilization of their art in the 21st century." She is committed to the union of teachers throughout the world, a global curriculum and global campuses. She is a Huffpost blogger, lives in Salt Lake City, UT and is available for travel wherever and whenever the sun shines. Featured images by Jeff Clay