Symbols are powerful. Pictures can say in one second what 1000 words can’t fully describe. Icons, both the ones on computers and the people who’ve been canonized, are essentially shorthands for things we want to remember that are important. A visual reference for what’s in a file. A physical reference for a kind of life.
The power of symbols also subverts deep learning, nuance, and the kind of breadth of experience that makes up life. Think about conversations in the realms of policy or institutional indoctrination. They are reduced to talking points. Essentially text as symbols. Catch words and phrases, that mean so much more that we don’t have the time to get into right now because there is a commercial break coming, or I don’t feel like typing more, or who’s going to read anymore than this, or do I really have to explain everything again?
Yes. We do have to explain everything again. And again. And again. Until the social fabric of our communities is repaired, reconciled, and healed. Until we realize that interpersonal relationship is more powerful than legislation. Until we have a way of being resilient enough to acknowledge the existence of a multitude of expressions while pursuing a path of truth and love.