Compassion, Culture, Humanity, Kindness, Society, Violence

Beyond #Hashtags and Petitions: Time for a Change of Meme

maxresdefault“We’re left heartbroken yet again in the wake of deadly acts of violence against police and our fellow citizens. Our hearts go out to the loved ones of all those whose lives were taken.” said a note from that I found in my mailbox.

“Together, ” it went on to say, “we at reject the notion that violence is inevitable or must be tolerated. These are the times that can divide us, but we don’t have to take sides. If you believe in peace, understanding and justice, we are on the same side. We can make a choice to join one another in solidarity, and work together to build the world we want to live in. Right now.”

I read on eagerly for proposed solutions…

Continue reading

Compassion, Culture, Kindness, Peace, Reason, Society

Coexisting With or Without the Bumper Sticker

We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.  -Martin Luther King, Jr.

165212878_7f8aa6cb2a_b I took my father to lunch this past weekend, and when I came out of the restaurant, and passed behind my car to get into the driver’s seat, I discovered someone had removed my Coexist bumper sticker.

It was a magnet actually, but had been on the back of my car for quite a while.    I was very fond of it.  I liked seeing it on other cars, and always knew when I saw it that we had a sort of camaraderie of hope as we drove along on our parallel ways to wherever it was we were going.  It was nice to park next to another Coexistance fan. I knew they probably wouldn’t ding my car, or be a parking space hog.

Continue reading

Compassion, Culture, Humanity, Kindness, News, Peace, Reason, Society, Violence

Islands in the Sea, Connected in the Deep

Morality is often regarded as a creation of reason, an affair of concepts and principles; but it may be that the imagination is a more necessary foundation for morality than reason, because the injustices that we are asked to relieve and to abolish are most often injustices that we ourselves have not known. The narrowness of experience is one of the primary impediments to compassion. We will never give help if we cannot picture need. 

From The Syrian refugees and us,  by Leon Wieseltier

islandWe are like islands in the sea, separated on the surface but connected in the deep, said 19th century philosopher, William James.

One could also say the sea that separates us is sometimes angry, hurling tsunamis of the overwhelming grief and heartache of war, terrorism, poverty, disease and madness, against our isolated shores.  But it is not the world that generates those metaphorical waves, it is we humans who inhabit it,  and we also have the power to calm the sea.

Continue reading