So last night, Res Life hosted a showing of Grassroots Films “The Human Experience” down in the Harper Center, and all were welcome. More than the quality of the film and the message it projected to the audience, there were a few things that dumbfounded me. First, the amount of students in the audience was overwhelming. Sure, there were facebook notifications and email reminders about the 7pm showing on a Monday night, but even through the nasty snow and midwest winter weather, the Harper Auditorium was full of students who wanted to see this film.
As a journalism student, I think that I looked at the film through different eyes. I paid attention to the methods in which they gained information, and reflected on the power of the words and pictures and videos that they experienced on their trip to find the meaning of human experience. I think that my other major (theology) integrated itself into my experience of the film because I was inspired by the faith of the Ghanians and the strength that all of the people profiled share. The recurring theme with every person in the film was that of their purpose in the world and that God put them here for a reason. One homeless man said that if God wakes him up in the morning, then there’s something for him to do that day.
I think that the messages from the film that I found most inspiring and world-shaking is that of the mentality of people who seem to have nothing. As a Ghanian cleric explained, “one who has faith in God has everything” and they do mean that and live by that. These multitudes of people who, in our opinion and experience have “nothing,” really do have all that they need and find joy in life itself – for no other reason than life is precious.
I think that the film rocked the worlds of many students watching, humbling us and making us think about our actions and what we stress about on a daily basis. The struggles that we are having in life, the fact we stress about how Creighton didn’t give us a snow day, or worrying about plans for the weekend — pales in comparison to the struggles that people all over the world face. Yet the profound thing is that these people profiled don’t stress nearly as much as we do, and they more of a right to than we do on any given day.
The film made the overall point that the human experience is something that is shared by every single person on earth because of our innate connection of human existence. As one of the Americans in the film said of the Ghanian population – “They accepted me right away, just because I was a human being.” It’s something to think about, right? What does the human experience mean to you? How can we, as privileged westerners, do something to be in solidarity with those who struggle to survive but hold an immensely strong faith?