What is humanity doing? Where have we gone terribly wrong?
The news flattens me, daily.
Robin Williams’ suicide.
The plight of the Yazidi, annihilated by a terrorist group calling itself the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. The Yazidi aren’t the only ones dying in droves at their hands. Or those dying at the hands of the Militia operating there. I often wonder what kind of a religion can so effectively remove empathy and compassion from the hearts of its followers, and rationality from their minds.
I read an in-depth article on Edward Snowden published by Wired magazine. It was fascinating to read about how in the name of security and self-protection, the basic rights of so many civilians are being violated on an ongoing and daily basis (and there is apparently no monitoring mechanism in place to keep the honest people, monitoring the honest, honest).
I read about the latest happenings in Ferguson and what feels like a shift in what is viewed as fundamental human rights, sides being taken and so far from meeting somewhere in the middle that it feels like pre-MLK era mindset.
I think about the situation in the Ukraine, and wonder how someone could think that plundering a tube of mascara from the luggage of the downed Malaysian flight would be a good, ethical, thing to do. Who would want to use someone else’s used mascara anyway? The depravity goes on an on.
If I were god (if there was a god and I could step into god’s shoes for even a moment) I’d wonder where my children (if in fact we were in some way, directly or indirectly, the offspring of such a creator) had gone wrong, or more importantly, I would question what kind of parent I was, and where I’d failed with my parenting.
Clearly all of the various religious writings and all of the institutions upon which they are based, have somehow failed humanity. I think, perhaps, that humanity has essentially failed itself.
Have we not learned anything, over the many millennia that we have inhabited this green and blue dot?
My heart breaks. I want to keep the faith. I want to believe in humanity’s capacity for great and wondrous and beautiful things.
But daily my heart sinks. I turn to the little things that make me smile, like my writing or making little bits of art, or a walk around the inlet right by my neighbourhood – surrounded by green, with feet rhythmically pounding the dirt trails. I feel a little better, even if worry flares up about the tons of nuked water from the coast of Japan flooding the Pacific ocean and somehow affecting (in a way which we have yet to adequately determine) the ecosystem we rely upon and of which we are by our presence within it an integral part.
Then I get THIS in my inbox.
The sentiments oddly reflect my own.
The paralysis of concern combined with the inability to know what empowered action to take is a weighty one. What DO we do when we feel disengaged and downright helpless?
Maybe taking small, measurable but consistent, steps is a place to start. Maybe it all starts at home, in our backyards, and maybe, given time, the effects will ripple out wide enough to effect global change.
And to quote something from Jim Carrey’s commencement speech he gave earlier this year:
“Take a chance on faith — not religion, but faith. Not hope, but faith. I don’t believe in hope. Hope is a beggar. Hope walks through the fire. Faith leaps over it.”