We've all seen the terrible
images of tragic violence in Israel and Palestine
over the past few weeks. The terrorist attack on the
USS Cole brought the violence a little closer to home
for Americans. When you read the news, you can't avoid
the bloodshed and hatred in the Middle East, the Balkans,
Africa, and so many other places throughout the world.
Contrast this with the writings
of numerous authors of the "New Age" movement who
maintain we are on the cusp of an evolutionary change
in humankind to higher consciousness. This idea is
roughly analogous to the Christian concept of an approaching
millennium. Only the emphasis is on mankind changing
from within, not God enforcing an external change.
New Age authors come from
diverse backgrounds: Buddhist monks, Jewish rabbis,
Christian priests, psychiatrists, psychics, physicists,
educators, etc., all share this idea of an evolution
of consciousness. Are humans really evolving to a
higher state of consciousness?? If so, then why are
people still fighting over tombs and sacred rocks?
When will we finally overcome our medieval mind-set?
I have a message to the leaders
of the militant ethnic groups, the over-zealous Israeli
policemen, the terrorists: Renounce Violence! Your
violent acts will only attract more violence. More
violence to yourselves and the people you claim to
be fighting for. To the Israeli and Palestinian so-called
religious and political leaders: teach peace!
What kind of religious leader
would incite violence in the hearts of their followers?
If you are guilty of inciting others to violent actions,
you will be held accountable for their actions, as
well as your own. You abuse the name of God, you abuse
the name of Allah, when you advocate or condone violence
in their name.
To achieve a higher state
of world consciousness, we must learn to forgive the
unfortunate incidents in the past. Let it go. Nothing
can be gained from focusing your hate-dominated thoughts
and emotions on the negative past. By doing so, you're
doomed to perpetuate the cycle of violence. The negative
energy generated from your thoughts and feelings spawn
more negative emotions in the world around you. From
your thoughts, more violent acts are created.
I understand how much it must
hurt to watch either your young policemen, soldiers
or students killed before they reach their prime.
It may be your brother, your father, your son. I understand
the almost primal desire for revenge. The burning
anger that blinds rational thought and leads to animal-like
responses - like beating a dead body beyond recognition.
I've experienced those same emotions, and it frightened
me. I was no longer in control of my actions. Think!
Don't give into the anger.
Not only are you creating
more violence in this world now, but you're condemning
yourself to more violence in future incarnations.
Are you a rock-throwing student? Great, next time
around you'll be one of the Israeli cops shooting
at the rock-throwing student. Are you an Albanian
burning the house of a Serb family living in Kosovo?
Wonderful, in your next incarnation you'll be a Serb,
and be chased from your home by a vengeful Croatian.
We all need to make the conscious
effort to stop the violence now...or it will continue
to spiral on, out of control. Look back through history,
nearly all of the uprisings or revolutions that were
brought about violently, even to fight for some "social
good" only resulted in failed systems and even more
violence. Look at the horrible consequences of the
October Revolution in Russia. Tens of millions killed,
and the people still suffer more than 80 years later.
If you really want to change
the world, do not fight, love! Only by loving those
around us, unselfishly, will we truly make a difference.
I realize the people who need to understand these
words are too busy killing each other to read them.
However, this message still applies to the "civilized"
people who are reading it.
Maybe our actions aren't as
violent, but are we spreading hate and dissension
in our own community? Do we treat people poorly because
their skin color is different, or they speak with
an accent? Do we ignore our neighbors because they
don't worship at the same church we do? Do we make
fun of homosexuals or lesbians or straight people?
We need to change our pattern
of thought, our pattern of speech, and our actions
to reduce and finally eliminate our ignorance and
prejudice. We need to teach our children to do the
same. Parents and teachers have a great responsibility
to teach tolerance and respect. How? By words, but
mostly through actions. You've heard that actions
speak louder than words? I think our actions speak
so loudly, others around us can't even hear our words.
Young people observe the way adults interact with
others and mimic their actions, that's how prejudice
and hatred are perpetuated.
Wherever we live, first we
first need to change our own hearts. Then we need
to be an example of love to those around us. Only
through our collective individual efforts, will the
evolution of humanity take place. Only then will we
create a world beyond fear, hatred, prejudice, violence