The Queen's death represents one thing to a British or Scottish family and those whose ancestors remained loyal to the crown. Canada remained loyal to the crown for much of our history, and we are still shaped by that template, products of that stamp.
The Queen means something else to a freedom-fighting woman in Kenya. She represents something different to those who have lost everything to the crown she wore. Everything. Family, land, language, identity, and entire cultures were wiped out. Gone.
Those that survived did so by integrating into the dominant culture the crown dictated. (Just as the Scots had to do when England invaded their lands)
Usually, this is accomplished by force, which begins with threatening violence or perpetuating it.
Next, subdue the women and strip them of their rights, even their own bodies or thoughts.
Next was child abduction to indoctrinate the children with self-hatred and obedience, to be loyal to the crown, the motherland, or the emperor or god.
In just three generations, you can construct a society that will conform to whatever rules the current leader wants to put in place.
Read history books or watch international news today and tell me you don't see that pattern everywhere.
Many of our siblings experienced horrific events and terrifying subjugation under the orders of the crown she wore. Generations are still recovering from the blow the crown dealt in their arrogant belief that they owned the world. She didn't give much of it back under her reign and fought against people demanding their freedom.
I understand she was loyal to her ancestors and all the generations who held that royalty template in place. I mean, look at all those old castles all over the islands!
I understand she did her best to keep the old ways strong, as she was sworn to and duty-bound to do.
I doubt any living soul today would have held up as she did.
Under the pressure of thousands of years of wars and history, all that responsibility on the heads that wore that crown must have been crushing. But she held her head up and held firm to what she believed was her duty to those she was raised to think were 'her' people. She upheld the 'traditions' as she knew them, as a wisdom keeper is meant to do.
I would have crumpled under that weight. I'm honest enough to know that about myself. In fact, I wouldn't go near an incarnation like that for anything, even to end an era. I like to believe I would have done a better job and would do what was right in her position. Maybe pay back some of the debts of my ancestors, but I'm not even doing that in my own real life, and neither is almost everyone else.
Life is woven of all perspectives. We are not right or wrong in our view, but it's easy only to allow one picture to dominate, and we are trained to do that. It takes skill to hold a few perspectives at once, especially if they seem to contradict each other like the Queen's legacies do.
We share diverse and different histories, and our lineage ancestors have had an incredible variety of experiences across this planet. Our personalities are woven of those experiences and the choices our ancestors made; We are woven of their stories.
We have forgotten that we are ALL children of creation trying to figure out how to live with planet Earth. We have a hard time acknowledging that all these perspectives are valid, yet, we know that what each honest person is saying they are experiencing is their truth. If we can really open up to someone else's perspective, to listen attentively to their story and the history that shaped that perspective, we can begin to heal our gaps.
It's a gift to each other as we include new stories in our knowledge base and get a deeper picture of an event. The more perspectives we have, the clearer things look, like a bird's eye view. The more we learn about each other's stories, the more we find compassion, commonality, and community. We begin to remember we are siblings.
We are the Homo Sapiens that survived the last glacier. So many ancestors did not survive. They call some of those ancestors' ghost DNA'. We, alive today, are the descendants of these pockets of people who found a place to survive the last great cataclysm.
Our ancestors' families survived alone, cut off from others, some of them for hundreds of generations, as ice encased the world. Each isolated pocket of surviving humans developed distinct languages and customs, wisdom and knowledge that were shaped by the landscapes where they were hunkered down for the long winter. Our genes shifted and adapted the surviving families to climates that were foreign and hostile to our central African Elders. And they carried on.
Our different ancestors survived and created unique bodies, minds, and spirits that matched the challenges and advantages our diverse landscapes gave us. The Earth itself is what shaped us into individual cultures with unique customs, bodies, wisdom and skills. Even the traits we don't like in ourselves were there to offer whatever it took to survive the worst!
Most of our relatives died during the crush of ice the Earth was under, along with the animals, plants and magnificent forests. We are all that's left of our kind.
We, the direct siblings of the great homo sapiens, need to understand each other; we need to accept that a multitude of realities and experiences make up the stories of this Earth and be inclusive of all of them. As distinct and different as a mammoth is from a great blue whale, none of us experience the same world. Only together can we weave an accurate picture of the reality we have made here. It is hard to be vulnerable enough to let our hearts see what is, but that's how we can heal life into what could be.
I am afraid there will be many who celebrate the Queen's death, and there will be many who will mourn her loss. I have already seen the memes circulating on social media.
I am trying to hold many realities the best I can, and I am open to holding more as stories are shared with me. Siblings reconnecting after literal ages have gone by, sharing our painful stories and beginning to heal the fragmented family, is how it looks so far to me, from this perspective.
My lanterns are lit for those who love the Queen because I know this is difficult. It's challenging for those who knew and loved her personally, who called her kin, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Those who called her friend or companion and those who looked after her all her life will also be grieving her loss. And those who loved what she represented to them, those who held her as an icon or an inspiration, those who believe they knew her somehow, knew her true heart, will all be grieving too.
So my Lanterns are lit for all who love her.
And my lanterns are lit for all who are truly angry.
I grieve for their pain and the pain of the ancestors they carry with such strength and dignity that my heart breaks and swells at once. I witness their courage and fortitude and am in awe of their resilience. My lanterns are lit in solidarity and hope.
And even the attention seekers and grandstanders who light fireworks of hatred just to get noticed. Even those who delight in cutting and wounding with their words, guns, and bombs. Those gleefully leading pitchforks and torches to publicly shame and harass targeted people and their comments, both online and increasing real-life violence and vendettas. Especially those who pay desperate people to do all that and more in their corporate name, fanning the flames of hell. Well, something deadened your souls at some point, so lanterns are lit for you as well.
This is the opinion of Krow Fischer not Red or the Council or Wendy. Just to be clear.