All this talk of more bombing in the Middle East is ridiculous. We simply can not continue in endless wars, for many reasons. First of all, we can’t afford it, but more importantly wars don’t work. It’s a leftover (maybe hangover) of macho caveman behavior. Beating our chest and then beating up the other person solves nothing. We only create enemies and perpetuate more violence.
Who started the trouble in the Middle East? Warring factions over there blame each other. We blame Muslims for the 9/11 terrorism, but we (the USA) were meddling in their (Middle East) affairs for fifty years before that tragedy. We needed their oil back in the 1950s to satisfy our endless appetite for fast cars and “the good life”– at ANY cost. We didn’t care if we had to topple a regime or two to get it. Just like a school yard bully, we were on top, riding high for awhile until the oppressed got pissed and took revenge. That’s the way I see 9/11. It was already an act of revenge, but we turned it into a major war that has cost nearly TWO TRILLION dollars and ruined countless lives– American, Christian, Muslim and more.
What has this solved so far? “Absolutely nothing” as the old song song “War” proclaimed back in the 1960s. Now we have hawkish political candidates who want to double down. Totally ridiculous! The only hope is when one side is brave enough to de-escalate tensions.
Honestly, think about any conflict you’ve ever been engaged in, when has violence ever had a successful outcome? If you kill someone there will always be consequences. It could be anything from your conscience driving you crazy, to death, if a family member believes in “an eye for an eye”; or depending on your religious views, eternal damnation. Just imagine the revenge that will come from recent police brutality. We’ve seen that hatred escalating on both sides.
So, what is the solution when we hate someone (or a group of people) so much we want to kill them, or wage war? The only answer is forgiveness. WAIT, don’t blow me off yet. Hear my logic.
When we hate (or hold a grudge, or crave revenge) we are only hurting ourselves. The other person or group is not affected by our feelings of hatred, WE ARE! It makes our heart or head pound and increases our blood pressure. (I’m sure a medical professional could explain this is detail, but you get the point.) We are mad, angry and our face is flushed. If we follow through and physically harm “the other” we might feel some satisfaction for a brief time, and then what? Psychopaths might get off on it, but the rest of us usually feel miserable, especially if we do this repeatedly. The other possibility is the harmed come after us and we are injured, maimed or killed. Not great results, eh?
By forgiving the “bad guy” we discover several things. First, we feel better after letting go of the rage and anger. Our blood pressure and “fight or flight” response settles down. We feel lighter, free-er, and in time even joyful. And, after all success is happiness, not misery. Hard to be happy when we’re full of hatred and anger. And one thing I’ve learned: Our freedom is founded more in love than in hate.
Just some food for thought during this time of Thanksgiving.