Regardless of where I am, I am in relationship with other humans and the world we share. It is easy to take these relationships for granted. Over the years, I discovered, children and youth embrace differences more readily than adults.
Through the use of satire, made up words, and unusual characters, Theodor Geisel, better known to us as Dr. Seuss, took a stand against bullies, hypocrites, and demagogues. In this way, I think his characters depict pluralism we live in. Yes, there is no Lorax, Yertle the Turtle, or Cat in the Hat, but we can learn to appreciate and defer to their beautiful differences. Even within differences, I find more similarities and common ground with others, a sense of community of humans.
We need this in the world we co-inhabit with other sentient and non-sentient beings. Too often, people who masquerade as leaders tell us to see difference as a problem, to exploit Nature, and to separate ourselves from our better angels. Perhaps our better angels are Thing 1 and Thing 2.
I retrieved the Thing 1 and Thing 2 image from Clip Art Mag.
I took this picture Sunday at the Japanese Friendship Garden. Even in the midst of an urban setting, like Phoenix, we discover spots where nature and humans co-exist in almost perfect harmony. In truth, we are never separate from nature and humans. It is only in our thoughts we are separate, somehow superior. When we are present and mindful, we recognize there are no boundaries.
Here are four of my favourite Dr. Seuss quotes:
Today you are You, that is truer than true.
There is no one alive who is Youer than You.
Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.
Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.
So be sure when you step, step with care and great tact.
And remember that life’s A Great Balancing Act.
LOOK OUT FOR THAT SEUSS JUICE!
Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
DR. SEUSS….IS STILL ON THE LOOSE! :d
Lovely rhyme Jonathan
Really appreciated this charming tribute to Dr. Seuss, including your favorite quotes. Fun to think of Thing 1 and Thing 2 as our better angels. Thanks, Ivon.
You are welcome Jet. Thank you for stopping by.
I think it’s great to find harmony with the world and ourselves and how we all connect. And who doesn’t love a dose of Dr. Seuss? Haha. Great post!
Thank you Parker. Yes, Dr. Seuss adds to each day.
Dr, Seuss is a favorite of mine. The Grinch is a special favorite as he said, “I must find some way to keep Christmas from coming.” I read these stories to my first graders so many times!
We used them in junior high to show the power of language and imagination. I also emphasized his role as a social justice advocate.
Who doesn’t love Dr Seuss 🙂
Love this….and the quotes are awesome…kid relatable, and for adults too!!
I think children who grew up with Dr. Seuss might be adults who still appreciate Dr. Seuss.
You’re right. There’s much to appreciate.
“Don´t cry because is over. Smile because it happened”. In a twisted way I myself have that philosophy about life. You learn.
I only saw that Japanese garden in San Francisco, but it seems Phoenix has one up on Frisco, it is a HAPPY garden
It is small, but that might add to its charm. I tend to get lost in big.
You always add to charm
Great choice of Dr. Seuss quotes! And you were in Phoenix? Wish you’d made it down to Bisbee. We could have met for a coffee/tea.
Emilie, that would have been nice. I will try to remember for next year. We come down annually. How far is Bisbee from Phoneix? We are on the west side of the valley. It was good to get away from the snow and cold.
It’s about four hours. Look up Bisbee online. Sweet little artsy town.
I will look it up and plan differently next year.
Quotes are brilliant!
Thank you Alexander.
Pingback: Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss — Teacher as Transformer | By the Mighty Mumford
“When we are present and mindful, we recognize ther are no boundaries”, I should keep that in mind more often, I only apply it in extreme circumstances. Hence it is good since I go from 0 to 100, but is not stable.
Great post Dr. Prefontaine, and always a pleasure to read all your other writings here in wordpress.
Thank you Charly. I try hard to remember the words of Thich Nhat Hanh: “we find the extraordinary in the ordinary.” It is challenging to follow that way, but, when I am present, it is rewarding.
I have to catch up. I cannot believe I did not observe Dr. Seuss this year. I must video tape myself reading one of his stories to my grandchildren. I must have been too distracted with other things. I love Dr. Seuss.
Dr. Seuss taught many children and adults how to love what Paulo Freire calls “unity in diversity.” We are each different and we should celebrate that and what makes us the same, our humanity.
Followed Paulo Freire throughout my career and had the pleasure and honor of attending a conference where he was the keynote.
I would have loved that. I am reading Pedagogy of Hope (re-reading) for an article I am writing with a colleague from North Carolina. It has be so enjoyable to read about hope at a time like this.
Hope is always good for the soul.