The past year has been rather peculiar. Surprisingly, amidst all that chaos I found a retreat in small moments of clarity. For the first time, I was able to put in perspective what it means to belong, as well as the role I play in my community.
This journal touches on revelations of a sense of belonging at personal and communal levels.
A sense of Belonging
We are social creatures, being a part of a community not only nourishes us, but it also validates our very existence. There is usually a very thin line between the need to ‘belong’ and the need to ‘fit in’ somewhere.
To belong means we have taken the time to understand who we are and what we value. We present our whole selves to our community without a doubt in our bones that we are valued, and should we need a hand, our community will lend us one without judgement.
On the other hand, to fit in means that you tweak your personality and mum the voice within just so this elusive version of yourself is accepted by a group of people you often admire. Here, nothing is certain because you have given away your power.
I don’t know about you, but my social media is often packed with ideologies of what it means to be a wholesome person or a person who is valued in this or that sense. The beginning of the Girl Gone Authentic journal was really the beginning of reclaiming and redefining my truth without the million other voices telling me how to be and how to do.
Ironically, I always found myself spiraling into a picture-perfect way of relaying the truth within me. In turn, I ended up with accumulated anxiety centered around a self-imposed popularity contest. A bright and bold highlight of my need for approval and acceptance. In other words, I was trying too hard to fit in to this community I was creating.
Fortunately, a counter-narrative emerged. In chaos, I found a stillness that renewed my spirit. As I spent more time with my family, I experienced a profound sense of belonging. Flawed as I am, they accept all of me. I’d say this was the beginning of reclaiming my humanity.
You see, the power you place on the relationship you have with yourself and others directly affects your values. Once you get to this realisation of what it means to truly belong, there is no going back to who you were. Instead, you cultivate a dire need to tap into a reality of total freedom.
Before the year that was 2020, you may have been inclined to say the world had become a smaller place to exist in. At a whim, you could travel from one continent to another, take a picture and off to the next place. All that, and still, there was much spiritual, emotional and even psychological detachment.
This isolation became even more apparent as the borders shut down. For the most part, most of us realised how lonely we really were – a symptom of how overconsumption of information and constant busy-ness were temporary space fillers.
We’ve seen how social causes were pushed forward. In all continents, people came together to fight for an ideal world. Conversations that were often had in hushed voices finally came to light. This is evidence enough that the loneliness that came out of being isolated drove us to our natural and basic instinct: belonging in community.
We are remembering that it is deeply rooted in each one of us that we belong to each other. In acknowledging this, we can come together to forge a stable world our children can inherit.
Fulfilment and purpose begin with authentic self-restoration and pours out into our environment. What kind of community do you wish to create? Where do you belong?
Words: Khumoetsile Seamogano
Wearing Morii Design
About Morii Design
Morii Design fosters sustainability and community craftsmanship through emotive creativity. Driven by the desire to preserve age old textile dyeing and embroidery techniques, Brinda holds workshops in rural India. Here, the community co-creates unique expressions and translates them into wearable and decorative art. Each piece of fabric is therefore a shared poem between the designer, creator and owner.
When asked about purpose Brinda Dudhat, Co-founder and and designer at Morii Design profoundly states that: “I find the things made by hand the most meaningful. I believe there is a beautiful connection between our hands and the brain and it is manifested when one creates something using hands. I have felt this while making abstract paintings and while doing intuitive embroidery, my brain is guiding my hands, it is a different language of internal communication, and I find this process most immersive. I nurture this creative process through my work for Morii.”