FORGIVING FATHER

Forgiveness 12″x9″ mixed media on paper

Growing up with violence in relationship with my parents was chaotic and crazy making.  Untangling the mass of anger, resentment, confusion and pain through religion or psychotherapy never got to the core.  It all seemed to stay stuck in my head.  My thoughts have often concluded that I would never understand my father.  He grew up with extreme violence and racial discrimination as one of Canada’s Indigenous peoples.  James Gosnell, a Nisga’a leader said we were “beggars in [the wealth of] our own land.”

I was reading Krishnamurti’s “Think on These Things,” when I realized I’d been attempting to understand my father from a child’s mind, from the one who felt as though I was always outside of parental-child relations.  When I read that we must revolt against the conditioning of this society, I came to understand that is what my father was doing through his alcoholism and with his grade four education by becoming a journeyman carpenter, a commercial fisherman, a BC Ferry employee and so many other accomplishments that had him working to assist with his financial commitment as a father.  He was revolting.  It wasn’t in freedom and peace.  Nevertheless, there it is.  And in understanding, in seeing–forgiveness moved from my head to my heart.  The movement was magic, supernatural, outside of myself.
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Acrylic transfer, acrylic paint, molding paste, pan pastel and lace fabric.

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