The Power of a Hive Mentality in Today's World

Colorado Jill
Image by soufiane koraichi from Pixabay

In 2008, Matt Willey had a life-changing experience with a bee.

In his interview with American Lifestyle, Willey shared that a sick bee flew in his window and landed on his rug. Shortly after, it died. After doing some research, Willey learned that sick bees do not return to the hive because they don’t want to transmit their illness or disease to the rest of the colony.

Instead, a bee will fly somewhere else to die, which happens quickly without the protection of the hive. A bee will sacrifice itself to protect the health of the community.

This behavior may initially seem sad, but when you think about it from the perspective of every bee working to protect all bees, it is powerful. The hive mentality of working together for the greater good is something worth promoting.

To raise awareness for this fascinating insect that plays an integral role in our ecosystem, Willey created The Good of the Hive, a global art project.

He has committed to painting 50,000 honey bees in murals around the world. Why 50,000? That is the average number of bees in a healthy, thriving hive.

“The hive I am creating is a metaphor for us all…no matter your color, nationality, religion, gender, age, or economic status. This piece of art is an idealized picture of health to focus on as we work toward solutions.” -Matt Willey

To date, Willey has painted 8,734 bees on murals worldwide. In the United States, his art can be found in North Carolina, Washington, New York, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Florida, Tennessee, California, Louisiana, and Washington D.C.

Go here to see photos and locations of his murals.

The Good of the Hive started with bees but has grown into raising awareness for everyone’s health — animals, humans, insects, and the environment. We share this planet, and if each of us works for the collective good instead of our self-interests, we can make a difference.

The actions of one can impact us all.

There are countless ways to protect our hive including planting trees, reducing energy consumption, conserving water, recycling, cleaning up our community, protecting habitats, raising awareness, and speaking carefully and kindly to others.

When you see a bee, whether in real life or on one of Willey’s amazing murals, remember this creature works for the greater good of its hive.

What are you doing to protect your world?

This article was first published on Medium.

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Outdoor Explorer | Animal lover | Fun Seeker | Community-minded Writer in Colorado

Colorado Springs, CO

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