Humans.

We walk among them.

We also work among them, shop among them, conduct studies about them and regularly eat dinner with them. In fact, many of you reading this are one.

My children are humans, too, or so I've been told.

Humans are complex. Wrapped into one person are joy and sorrow, seriousness and silliness, and an innate sense of wonder about the world around them. Some hike up to the highest mountains just for a new perspective; others dive deep into the ocean or into the pages of a book.

Some go deep into the human psyche. A lot of curiosity stems from a desire to find ourselves. We often think if we figure out the world around us, we just might figure ourselves out too. In ways, we are all the same. Though we share different passions, we know what it means to have a torch for something burning deep inside.

We all experience love and loss in different ways for different reasons, but the joy and pain associated with each are relatable across the land. Happiness, too, is an individual journey but a destination we are all in search of. With everything humanity shares, our differences are what makes us precious to behold — each birth brings into the world an individual with a unique combination of personality and flair. No two people are the same, and we don’t always realize it, but this is a gift to society.

Coming in all different shapes and sizes, humanity is a flavorful recipe made to order with varying dashes of sugar and spice. Humanity is also colorfully served with skin tones ranging from extremely light to extremely dark, and hair colors from blond to magenta to cornflower blue — not all are natural, but still colorful nonetheless.

People also have individual areas of strength; what some are good at others are not. Like math, some are terrible at math while others aren’t (and then some failed college algebra three times before skidding by at the end of the semester before graduation). Some are athletic and able to run long distances, and others are more short distance runners — like sprints to the fridge.

Most interesting is the brain. This muscle works the entire body; each one is filled with different likes and dislikes, ideas and opinions. Moving one foot in front of the other, curling the fingers to grasp a cup of coffee, or opening the arms to embrace another person the brain is in command of our movement. Yet it also possesses the ability to compose music, write poetry, or cure disease.

The heart is another curiously important part of humanity—linking to personal relationships and passionate causes. From the heart is where the greatest human acts derive. It reaches into despair and pulls out hope where no one else can see it. It steps forward to help when everyone else is backing away. Heroes are born in the heart of humanity.

When the heart and brain collaborate, crowds gather to watch them work.

Hearing them speak, listening to them sing, or watching them swish a paintbrush around a canvas — masterpieces come from the elbow grease of the mind and heart.

Used in the wrong way, unfortunately, the same pair is also capable of inflicting pain like none other. The skill of forming words of beauty and encouragement also comes with the capability to use sharp words to point and stab. The differences that make us special are the very thing tearing us apart.

Dulling the many colors and flavors that brighten our species is no way to find common ground, even worse, to seek and destroy opposing opinions is the exact way to cause a divide.

When those who see the world differently come together all in one place, like Facebook, it’s a verbal battleground. If we seek to cancel out our differences, no matter what those are, we are sure to find a combusted society.

If you mix a box of colors, do you know what you end up with? Dark gray — and that seems kind of boring to me.

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