Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Some rays of Hope

I got to pondering some ideas that were aligned with a comment someone left me. It seems apparent we need another revolution. It would be nice if it weren't bloody. And I think is started in Colorado already. But I'll come back tot hat.

On February 15, 2003, the world staged protests to the war in Iraq, which at that time had not quite started. In more than 100 nations, over 30 million people took to the streets in various ways to say no to war. Today in America we see Cindy Sheehan again saying no to war. She is unfortunately, a mother who lost a son in a war that has no nobility, no just cause. Again, people in America at least are rising up, and if the polls are accurate, then the majority say that the war is unacceptable. But then, aren't all wars?

Working for peace isn't easy. It means more than the absence of war. Children that grow up hungry have no peace. People who cannot get the health care they need have no peace. People who work minimum wage jobs and choose between rent and food, or rent and heat, have no peace. People who are working three to four jobs to live the American dream, and are one misfortune away from losing it all, have no peace.

Most importantly though, if we harbor in our hearts anger, hate, or violence, we will never have peace. I am still haunted by the question film maker Michael Moore asked at the end of Bowling for Columbine, "Why is America so violent?" The issue isn't the presence of guns or lack of them. It is the predilection to use them.

Gandhi said once that our thoughts determine our words, our words determine our behavior, our behavior our habits, our habits our values, and finally our values determine our destiny. In Buddhism it's called karma. The destiny of someone is the result their actions, or the result of their habituations. Which is why in Buddhism they stress the practice of developing compassion, as the most famous mantra, om mani pedme hung, is used in.

This compassion is what the next revolution needs to be about. Repressing the anger, and pain is not the answer, but much easier to do. We need to know why it is there to properly eliminate it. We can no longer tolerate any ignorant person, any starving child, any poor, regardless of where they live on the planet. We cannot tolerate any further development of means to kill one another until we have funded research to find the cures for diseases, funded all our schools, erased poverty, and insured that the citizens of this planet have access to health care if they want it.

Sound utopian? Damn right it does. But Gandhi was right. We all need to be the change we want to see. And that starts in our own minds.


Blogger Bruce Larson*Moore said...


well*said and very well*written.


18/9/05 13:28  

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