The other morning I was putting the finishing touches on an article I’ve been writing for a future issue of Conscious Life Journal. I am grateful for yet another opportunity to share my thoughts. However, this article was challenging as I was asked to write about what we do in our hours of despair. Where is Spirit/God in these times?
When I look around this planet, I, like you, cannot help but feel the anguish. Especially true in the aftermath of the killing that occurred at Parkland High School in Florida. (I will not use “shooting” because that is not what it was.) Prayers, comfort, policy change, mental health support…keep reading the memes and the comments. Only one thing will happen. Two weeks from now we will return to our safe, little corners of the planet and nothing will have changed.
I am a pacifist and that makes me vulnerable to all types of comments and lectures and so I usually keep quiet. I don’t believe putting guns on the street for the mentally ill to grab hold and say “Let me show you what it’s like to be me” serves any purpose other than showing us how serious the situation really is. I don’t think putting armed guards in front of every school in this country will prevent someone from breaking through the barriers if they truly wish to cause harm. That just happened the other day in my home town. Armed guard at the door, child with unloaded gun inside.
Someone wrote a comment in reply to a post about this most recent mass killing that there appears to be a connection between these killings and psychotropic drugs – indicating that this is not an easy situation based on current laws. There appears, actually, to be a stronger link between mass killings and AR-15s. Millions of men and women are on psychotropic drugs and yet only a handful (by comparison) of men are committing these acts.
To make the “situation easier”, let’s try prohibiting the sale of weapons of mass destruction, provide better access to healthcare for the mentally compromised, and teach every child (and adult) the repercussions of bullying and the value of acceptance. If all of that were in place we would not be mourning the fact that more than 400 people (mostly children) have been killed in this country while attending school and more that 150,000 children have been witness to that horrendous fact.
But rant all you want. Lament all you want. These incidents will continue to occur until we recognize that the answer to how we are supposed to live is not found in using violence to cure violence. The answer is found in how we react in the aftermath of these violent attacks. It is found in the outpouring of love, compassion and the need to comfort that we experience. Whether they are natural disasters or man made ones, this is the lesson we keep ignoring. Love until the hate disappears. Until we recognize it, begin to incorporate it into our daily lives, begin to impress it upon our officials and each other, NOTHING will change.
It’s time to change the story. Actually, it’s long past time.
And, in all seriousness, have you not yet seen how violence – in word and action – is destroying what is left of this planet? What role are you playing? When you think it through all the way to the end, what is it that you want? How will you help to bring peace to a planet that has lived from a place of hatred for so long? What are you actually doing besides reading posts like this? Do you have the courage to truly love until the hate disappears? How many times will I need to talk and write about this until someone listens?
So, I will end this rare rant in prayer:
“God, please think through me, speak through me, act through me.”
I think I’m gonna need to repeat that a bit more often …
From my heart to yours, Diane