Craftivism, Activism, and Love.

Every Sunday I look forward to getting the Brain Pickings’ newsletter delivered to my inbox. I feel like every week there is something that resonates deep within me, and says things in ways that I could never quite pinpoint or elucidate on. This week’s was no different.

One of the posts mentioned was called The Science of Love: How Positivity Resonance Shapes the Way We Connect. To learn more about “positivity resonance,” please go check out the full post .

Perhaps counterintuitively, love is far more ubiquitous than you ever thought possible for the simple fact that love is connection. It’s that poignant stretching of your heart that you feel when you gaze into a newborn’s eyes for the first time or share a farewell hug with a dear friend. It’s even the fondness and sense of shared purpose you might unexpectedly feel with a group of strangers who’ve come together to marvel at a hatching of sea turtles or cheer at a football game. The new take on love that I want to share with you is this: Love blossoms virtually anytime two or more people — even strangers — connect over a shared positive emotion, be it mild or strong.

At the level of positivity resonance, micro-moments of love are virtually identical regardless of whether they bloom between you and a stranger or you and a soul mate; between you and an infant or you and your lifelong best friend. The clearest difference between the love you feel with intimates and the love you feel with anyone with whom you share a connection is its sheer frequency. Spending more total moments together increases your chances to feast on micro-moments of positivity resonance. These micro-moments change you.

Don’t let the quotes I pulled from this post mislead you (entirely), as it definitely is a champion of “the necessary physicality of love.” And, I am, too. However, at the end of the day, I like to think of craftivism as part and parcel love letter to the world, as sometimes in your love letters you express anger or regret or shame or any number of negative emotions before you begin to roll over on your back and expose your soft belly underside, the squooshy, mooshy, lovey dovey parts that mend all things back together and show that, no matter what your discontent, love still remains above all.

Whether you’re making quilt squares to donate to charity or creating protest banners and leaving them in public places or making xstitch pieces to voice your anger or knitting mittens for the homeless in your spare time or realizing that crochet is saving your life… it’s all a love letter to craft, activism, and craftivism.

And, in that, there is infinite beauty and depth and heart and soul and love.

When I started all of this I did so as a reaction to the negative connotations of the word “activism.” I never knew that I was really wanting to connect “love” to activism more so than craft! Because each time we do something that helps others with our craft we are creating our own “micro-moments” of love in our own hearts that maybe we’ll either give to ourselves if we need it or to others. We’re cultivating and harnessing love and care as we open dialogues and our own hearts with what we make with our hands.

As craftivists we are lucky enough to have a process in which to heal us, and a product with which to help others. We are lucky to have the time to let what we’re making sink in and resonate deep within us as we make it, and then lucky enough to have the chance and the freedom with which to share it. The process warms our own hearts as much as the products warm the hearts (and bodies and souls) of others. And, in that, I find infinite love and am happy that there are others that feel the same way.

Thank you, in helping to send your love letters out into the world in whichever way you see best. Thank you for creating more “micro-moments” from which to draw love, feel love, and be love. By willing to express your inner thoughts and then share them with the world through craft, you are creating the conditions of love and acting as a reminder that activism can be a 4-letter word, just one filled with joy instead of hate.

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