The other evening, I had the good fortune of attending a screening of "The Music of Strangers", a documentary that follows Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble. I was even luckier to hear him play the opening song, "Going Home" less than 20 feet away from where I was sitting! (Side note: it's excellent and you should go see it!)
In the film, Yo-Yo speaks of his journey to find his own voice with his music in the world. How do you carry on the cultural roots with which you grew up, while also growing with them, letting them evolve and live on in the future?
The theme of home--defining it, searching for it both physically and mentally--is ever-present in the musicians, many of whom have had to leave their homelands due to war and violence. It resonated with me as my time spent living in Beijing has often left me seeking my own definition of home over the past 15 years.
So how do we do this? How do we find our place? We're all human, all seeking at the core the very same things: peace, love, our tribe.
Here's Yo-Yo's take on it: If we live, act and search with authenticity and a genuine desire to find our way to "home", we will build the connections to our shared humanity.
I personally feel incredibly blessed by the community that I have found through starting and growing Em & El Organics--customers, fellow vendor friends and entrepreneurs. You all have made my own journey the greatest and most rewarding challenge I have attempted. I love seeing longtime customers at shows and starting friendships with new ones. I relish the conversations with other business owners, who actively brainstorm ideas and solutions to problems.
The mere act of building Em & El has given me the chance to more fully step into my own voice, to be proud of who I am and what I love. I am grateful to you, my tribe of adventurous people, as you remind me to be authentically me--a wooden boatbuilder, a sailor, a world traveler.
So here's my hope (and I'm counting on you to tell me when you think we're getting off track around here): that Em & El Organics continues on this journey to grow with authenticity and a genuine curiosity to explore the world with an ever better understanding of our voice in this world.
What do you think? How do you find your voice and tribe?