I have been happily and randomly off the grid for a few days. I return and notice French tricolors all over the place. Oh no, I thought, what fresh horror has visited France? We non-French don't notice France unless something horrible has happened to France. Just how we roll since about 1900.
(Insert social network pabulum and platitude here over crrent events in Paris.)
That out of the way, please remain calm. Hold your leaders accountable for their reactions to this. We must not let chaos lead us to acts of further terror and hatred--eye for eye nonsense. Your morning Starbucks does not depend upon the suffering of people in the Middle East, I promise.
Think about what you're not thinking about. How we live. Conduct ourselves. What we condone, even celebrate that causes suffering and bitterness and fatal hatred across the world.
So few humans are born "evil." It takes a biological malfunction to create a psychopath, they aren't made by belief in a particular god, or because they present with a particular skin color, or arrive with a particular geographic or linguistic origin.
We can do better. Cleaning up the mess and burying the dead? Yes, we have to feel our anger and wish for revenge. And we must have our revenge.
What form will the revenge take? Does blood call for blood? Must it? Always?
If you have children, look at them. Would you wish upon them an experience of suffering that you'd give to others because hatreds led to violence and death? Is that what you'd wish upon a child? Anybody's child?
Somehow, in whatever way, we have to figure out a way to stop being lazy and greedy. We have to evolve our god to meet the challenges of our crowded world.
We have to love. More. Better. Generously.
Yes, we will always have to clean up the mess. Bury the dead. We are finite, we end. Sometimes we end because of the violence of others. It happens. A lot. More than we notice or hear about.
Today, we notice. Today, we will hear and read a great deal. We will be angry. We will know what hatred feels like, both extended toward us, and from us toward others.
We cannot win a war of hatred versus hatred. Nobody wins that war.
Clean, feed, and teach your children. Clean your home. Pay your bills. Do your job. Be your roles. Hold others accountable. Hold yourself accountable. Not with hatred and negative judgement. With encouragement. With love.
Create boundaries, yes. Defend them. Not with anger or with hatred. With determination and certainty. The boundaries will be challenged. Broken. Inevitable. Boundaries exist because they matter, and they are daily broken. Being broken does not make them matter less, their breaking highlights the purpose that founds the boundary. Our purpose. Who we are. Because we choose this. Guided by love. Not hatred that leads to breaking of boundaries.
In other words, if you'd find the action hateful to your land and home, do not inflict the same upon another's land and home.
We can do better. We can be better. Amid inevitable blood and death, we can be better. We don't face a population of psychopaths. We face people. Like us. With children who our actions and ideas form and create.
Nobody deserves to die for just going about his or her day.
In pursuit of our need for revenge and justice, how much more death would you create?
When do you win?