This morning I am torn between a simple offering of images from a weekend of deep spring celebration, and an unsettled feeling of nausea in response to the most recent, and significant, event in our nation’s history. I don’t want to start a fire storm, and the issue is so complex….my own feelings about it are so complex…that to truly do it justice I would want to write a well thought out, five part series. Instead, I will say this, as succinctly as I can. And then we’ll move on to the eye candy.
I was initially surprised, upon hearing the news that Bin Laden had been killed, to realize that our process of justice was a bullet in the eye. I waited with open-ness to hear what President Obama had to say. As he took the podium and began to speak, the mixture of emotions continued. And in his last words, I felt my heart plummet into my stomach.
The cause of securing our country is not complete, but tonight we are once again reminded that America can do whatever we set our mind to. That is the story of our history. Whether it’s the pursuit of prosperity for our people or the struggle for equality for all our citizens, our commitment to stand up for our values abroad, and our sacrifices to make the world a safer place. Let us remember that we can do these things not just because of wealth or power, but because of who we are, one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. Thank you. May God bless you. And may God bless the United States of America.
I took off my glasses, sighed, squeezed my eyes. I thought, “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.”. I thought, “Just WHAT, exactly, do our actions abroad truly say about our values?”. I thought, “Which God are we congratulating ourselves with? The one that said thou shalt not kill?” I thought, “What is our true definition of justice?” I thought, “If America can truly do anything, I think we can truly do better, on a lot of fronts.” I thought, “Ten years ago Bin Laden attacked us on our homeground, an action which created a deep wound, a trauma in our american psyche. And for the past ten years we have been in reaction to that event. A reaction that, among many other things, led to a war on false premises in Iraq, where we lost over 4000 soldiers…a thousand more than were killed in 9/11.” And then this morning I read that the CIA chief thinks that Bin Laden’s death will spur new terrorist attacks and I thought, “Violence always begets violence.”
Knowing what I do about how politics work, I don’t even know that we had any other choice than to kill Bin Laden. What bothers me the most is that among all the other people that the U.S. kills daily, in our “international relations”, is the self-congratulatory tone of the intentional head-hunting of a human being.
I saw this poem scrawled on an art installation in the days after 9/11…in a shop window, ties and high-heeled shoes hung suspended, falling to the ground like the workers of the two towers who jumped to their deaths. Written on the window…
promise me this day,
promise me now,
while the sun is overhead
exactly at the zenith,
Even as they strike you down
with a mountain of hatred and violence; even as they
step on you and
crush you like a worm, even as they dismember and
remember, brother, remember: man is not your enemy.
The only thing worthy of you is compassion –
Hatred will never let you face the
beast in man.
One day, when you face this beast alone, with your
courage intact, your
eyes kind, untroubled (even as no one sees them),
out of your smile will
bloom a flower.
And those who love you
will behold you
across ten thousand worlds of
birth and dying.
I will go on with bent head,
knowing that love has become eternal.
On the long, rough road,
the sun and the moon
will continue to shine.”
~Thich Nhat Hanh
Saturday…deep connection with women friends, bouncy castles, a walk in Tilden park, creek exploration, a cave…
Sunday…Beltane, faeries, flower crowns, wagon walks to the park, sunshine, sidewalk chalk, wishes…
I had visions of Fern wearing her Faery Queen crown all day. Alas, it touched her head for maybe a total of 30 seconds. This was a last ditch attempt while making dinner to at least get a damn photo.
What richness and fertility are you calling into bloom in your life?