Visit to Ground Zero Memorial and Metropolitan Museum of Art: The Worst of History, the Best of History
Yesterday I visited New York City. Our first stop was the Ground Zero Memorial. I had not been to the site since the Towers were both standing. Although we all have been reflecting upon and absorbing the horrific event which happened over ten years ago, each in our own way according to our personal experiences, I did not know how I would react to the site.
What was most noticeable to me was the diversity of the names on the Memorial. There were victims of many nationalities, languages, creeds, and cultures. The sheer number of people lost is staggering.
Later in the day we went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I love that the admission fee is only a recommended price. That policy indicates to me that this heritage belongs to everyone, regardless of ability to pay. Anyone can see these beautiful works of art.
The sheer size of the museum makes it impossible to see everything. We focused on the recently opened Art of the Arab Lands, then the European Impressionists, then Asia including China, Tibet, Korea, Cambodia, and India.
The visit was an interesting contrast to the morning's experience. Now we were seeing the height of culture, some of the greatest achievements and most beautiful creations of humankind. Each culture has a unique expression of what is most beautiful, meaningful, powerful, and enduring.
Our diverse cultures, which once developed along seemingly different paths (although with much interaction), all share one world. If war does not cease, and violent conflict does not end, we will all suffer the consequences together. Hate is a fire which devours everything in its path.
As our race, the human race, has created all these beautiful works of art, can we now create a world culture, diverse in its expressions, but united in one family? It is my hope that we can.
We ate lunch at Candle 79, which is "the" vegan restaurant in Manhattan. I ate a black bean pumpkin seed burger with polenta fries.
Ancient Near East