Life Lessons From The Short Film "Joy and Heron"
As our kids were growing up @dandalion and I developed a liking to animated movies. Our youngest Sam looks forward to the weekends of watching full length animated film from when she was two years old till now that she just turned ten. It was the search for something that we haven't seen (I don't think there's a lot left in that category) that led me to this short film.
At four minutes and fifteen seconds length, the entire story can be summarized quickly as, a loyal dog depending the fishing bait of his owner from a pesky heron. That summary however will not be accurately complete. As it turns out, the dog did not have a full understanding of the heron's circumstance and intent.
The film, as short as it may be resonated with me in multiple levels; as a parent, as a Steemian, and as a person who tries my hardest to understand people but more often than not fail miserably. I will attempt to extract lessons from this film and relate it to our experiences in Steemit.
On Post Length
A dialogue does not have to be extremely long, but it has to be long enough to make sense.
For several months now, I have kept my posts to be as long and as detailed as I could. In my interactions with other Steemians, I also advocate writing long-form contents. This film tells us however, that we don't actually need a full length movie to delivery an important message to the viewer, the same way that we may not necessarily need a 2000 words post if say 600 will allow us to make the same impact to the readers.
Still, if this films was any shorter, the message wouldn't have been as clear. I used 600 above because that will be about a four minutes read.
On Discord & Resolution
Discord springs mostly from not taking the time to understand each other.
In this short film for example, the dog thought it was depending the bait from the greedy heron. As it turns out, the theft wasn't motivated by greed. Theft itself is never justified regardless of motivation. As seen in the movie, the heron actually figured out a way to pay the dog back for its kindness.
By nature we are quick to judge others. We question what everybody else is doing, but see our actions to be always justified. It is only when we start to truly spend time to understand each other, and try to position ourselves in the other person's place that we get to appreciate what pushes them to do as they do.
We've managed to create labels for everybody; spammer, greedy self-upvoter, self righteous, reward pool rapist, etc... At some point I was even called a scammer for what I've tried to do for another Steemian who was suffering for a rare illness. In a community like Steemit where reputation is extremely important, we ought to be careful in ruining someone else's reputation as much as we are careful not to destroy our own reputation.
What is the Solution - Symbiosis
Symbiosis - the relationship between two different kinds of living things that live together and depend on each other - The Learner's Dictionary
In his National Geographic article "No Nemo: Anemones, Not Parents, Protect Clownfish" John Roach wrote this:
“For protection, clownfish seek refuge amongst the tentacles of sea anemones. The tentacles contain harpoon-like stinging capsules called nematocysts that the anemones employ to capture prey and ward off predators.
In a yet-to-be resolved biological mystery, clownfish have mucus on their skin that somehow protects them against the sting of their host anemone. As a result, the clownfish are able to stick near their host which is avoided by most other fish in the sea.
The clownfish gets protection by hiding sting-free among the tentacles. If you remove the clownfish, large butterfly fishes will eat the anemone.”
In the film, the dog and the heron seemed to have figured out a symbiotic way to co-exist. We've got to be able to do the same as Steemians if Steem is to amount to anything the world will have difficulty leaving unnoticed.