“We don’t even know how strong we are until we are forced to bring that hidden strength forward. In times of tragedy, of war, of necessity, people do amazing things. The human capacity for survival and renewal is awesome.”
— Isabel Allende
Well, work was very busy today & I didn’t get a chance to write my Friday post at lunchtime. Bad for my creativity since Paris, and the world, are reeling after a serious of almost certainly coordinated terror attacks has left possibly over 100 people dead. So, I’m too numb to write tonight, and the only thing I could think to do was repost my Je Suis Charlie post from January 8th. And I’d recently used the above quote in conjunction with the anniversary of September 11, 2001. Not feeling very original at the moment, but I’m certainly feeling the parallels.
My heart goes out to those in Paris tonight, and in the days to come. There are no easy answers with terrorism – the easy answers are what terrorists want and expect, but the world has gotten far too small and interconnected for those easy solutions. Which aren’t really all that easy, and really only serve to breed more hatred and distrust. But, somehow, love and common sense, and a shared humanity have to prevail, or there really will never be a just peace in the world.
“We often think of peace as the absence of war; that if the powerful countries would reduce their arsenals, we could have peace. But if we look deeply into the weapons, we see our own minds – our prejudices, fears, and ignorance. Even if we transported all the bombs to the moon, the roots of war and the reasons for bombs would still be here, in our hearts and minds, and sooner or later we would make new bombs. Seek to become more aware of what causes anger and separation, and what overcomes them. Root out the violence in your life, and learn to live compassionately and mindfully.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh
The following is a repost from January 8, 2015:
Not a huge fan of Salman Rushdie, but I can’t disagree.
As with any mass murder, there are no words adequate to express how I’m feeling. My heart goes out to the victims’ friends, families, other journalists, cartoonists, satirists, and everyone challenging the status quo.
We should all challenge the status quo – all of the time. If we can’t accept challenges to our beliefs, then those beliefs are not real. If every challenge is seen as a threat, then it is the force of our convictions that are lacking, not those of the challenger. We only change, grow, and deepen our own understanding by facing challenges – not by shooting the challengers, or bombing them. This applies not just to religious beliefs, but to everything that we believe. All the time.