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Let me introduce myself and my life's work

Updated: Jun 5, 2021

Hi I’m Meagan, and I would like to share my personal story with you. In 2020, everyone’s life was flipped upside-down. The COVID pandemic forced a lot of people to rethink many aspects of their life. It was a very difficult time for many, losing loved ones, jobs, houses, access to community services, all with stress levels going through the roof. I lost some employment, missed out on gigs, and seeing friends and family. I was not very hard hit. Luckily there was also a brief moment on Vancouver Island in the summer where we had few cases so small gatherings were not so nerve wracking. Oddly enough my "life being flipped up-side down" process started about eight years ago, and this crisis was neither shocking for me, nor luckily, all that life altering. I feel for everyone whose life was badly impacted and for those who lost loved ones. We're not out of this yet and it is still in my neighbourhood too. Although many days my husband and I consider moving out to even more remote islands, we currently live in a beautiful spot on Vancouver Island and are content. We always joke that we started our social distancing process many years ago. It feels like moving here prepared us for the pandemic and for what life would be like when it was over.

On days when I feel depressed or down, I have to snap myself out of it and remember that I am so blessed to be where I am in the world. My ancestors risked their lives so that we could prosper here. No matter what level of poverty or illness I have experienced in my life, I still have always had a place to sleep and food to eat. Not to mention clean water, clothing, transportation and most comforts. I am aware that many people around the globe live in desperate poverty worse than I will ever fully grasp. I am also aware that a lot of this poverty is inflicted on them because of the North American way of life. We have become accustomed to consuming more than our share, saying that we somehow "deserve it". Many of the poorest countries are so because the leaders of the developed world have manipulated their governments and finances for centuries. We all know by now that all North American land was essentially stolen from those who inhabited it. For what? For our big houses, technology, diamond engagement rings, cultural fads, vacations, and gasoline for our vehicles, boats and big boy toys.

Somehow, as the privileged class, through our cultural indoctrination we feel like we deserve to have all our dreams come true. I think that what we deserve might more resemble prison camp, world order collapse or at least a heavy kick in the pants. I’m not here to condemn or blame anyone, I only want to hold up a mirror so we can see ourselves better. Change only seems to be brought about through discomfort, and as we dissect our way of life, we are entering new territory. The most important thing in this journey is to keep an open mind. Whether you believe in the Bible, or Origins of Species, we all need to remember that every book ever written, was written by a person, and until recent history, usually a man of relative privilege. Humans are flawed and biased, and there is not a single book in existence that is completely objective. Everyone who writes a “his” “story” book is out to prove a point and only has a limited mind and personal view. As scholars, we learn from our teenage years how to write a convincing theory based on our beliefs, leaving out the arguments that cause conflict. History is written by the victorious, and catalogues of books that coincide with the limited beliefs of the day get passed down as “knowledge” by the elite group that pushes them and discredits alternative views. Therefore what we know as “history” is taught differently by every person in every corner of the world. The only truth is what’s happening in the moment, and even those who are living it only see what they can see.

Why do I think my point of view is important? I don’t really. The truth is my mind is so full of questions that I need to let them escape somehow. I feel compelled to write about this experience and I have no particular expertise except my own life. I grew up in a middle-class, white family in a small town in Northern Canada. My scope of the world was quite limited until I moved away, went to University, spent some time abroad, went through major life crises, and started to experience the realities of humanity. While working on a degree in Latin American studies, my eyes were opened to the impact my way of life had on the world. Manipulation, mass murder, and thievery on the highest scale were some of the methods used to secure our “freedom”. The violence with which our forefathers obtained the wealth of the Americas made me feel sick. Could it be true that the only reason our society is so affluent is because our leaders treacherously manipulated the finances and well being of what they considered to be inferior cultures around the world? I have always been an introvert, an observer of human behavior, always interested in the back-story, the motivations behind a certain action. I have also experienced what some might call evil, and others might call serious mental illness; a darkness within humans that at times feels inescapable.

It is exactly because of all of these thoughts that I have started some life projects. One is to keep creating art, visual and tonal; two is self sustainability; and three is to write and talk about the hard topic of the human condition. Through my coming blog "The Well-Intentioned Cannibal" I want to share experience through my lens and hopefully connect with people that have similar and hopefully different experiences. I don’t want a narrow “echo chamber” view, I want to hear all stories. However, the one thing that is intolerable in the conversation is pride and righteousness. The first thing every human needs to do is humble him or herself. Pride is what got us into this mess and if you come to me thinking your view and life are superior, you will only prove how far we have to go. So if you are intrigued, please get in touch. If you don’t know yet what to say, come back soon the for the many ways I hope we can share and express ourselves. Until next time, From beautiful BC.

Meagan Maria

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