Peace and Anti-War
Tens of thousands of people gathered outisde the Japanese parliament building on Sunday to reject plans put forth by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that would see an aggressive expansion of the nation’s armed forces despite a long-standing constitutional mandate for a “defense only” military posture.
In celebration, honor and recognition of Independence Day, it seemed appropriate to write about none other than “freedom”. Now, freedom is a concept that can mean many different things to many different people. One might consider freedom only in the context of nations, war, government and politics. Others might narrow it down a bit further to a persona level and say that freedom is in fact a state of mind and that true freedom involves taking full responsibility over the choices you make in your life.
Rev. John Dear: Like millions of others, I’m grieving the death of the nine church folk killed in the unthinkable massacre inside Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church on Wednesday night. My heart goes out to the families and friends of the dead, and the church members, and I offer all my condolences, prayers, blessings and love.
As with many things desired, the indoctrination which we have received in school, church and the like “teaches” us that someone else is responsible for giving it to us and, if we don’t have it, then someone has taken it from us. This leads (intentionally) and inevitably to the ridiculous activities of fighting for peace, destroying for prosperity and many other expressions of insanity.
Everyone has to practice nonviolence. Everyone. From the people on the streets to the police, to church ministers and parents, but also our media spokespeople and elected officials. Including the president. And the military. Everyone, everywhere. The days of war, killing, shootings, bombings, torture, executions and nuclear weapons are coming to an end. The days of violence are over. Everyone has to practice nonviolence. That is our only future–if we are to have a future.
There are less than one million people, world-wide, who wish to maintain the present system of exploitation. There are 6.9 billion of us. Numbers difficult to grasp so let me re-state it so: For every one of “them”, there are nearly seven thousand of us! The minute we act together is the same minute in which their system of exploitation will cease to exist. This is why “they” spend billions on black propaganda and carefully staged acts of terror aimed at dividing us against ourselves…Once we grasp, however, that it is not WE who are doing these things but that we are ALL victims of the self-same theatrical propaganda campaign then it becomes much easier to solve the problem. When we all grasp that we have been conned into believing that any particular group, nation or whatever is “out to get us” and that the only ones who are truly out to get us are the self-appointed “elite” who’ve been exploiting us all along then we can act together to eliminate our sorrows at their source.
As you are likely aware, some of the people in power (or as I prefer to say “like to think they are in power”) never seem satisfied with what they have. They are obsessed with making money and gaining even more power, and asserting control. Think of these people as the ones who like: the Trans-Pacific Partnership; endless wars (because they make money and get laws passed that get them more control); and knowing everything about you and controlling everything you do. This is part of the “Patriarchal” mentality that has been with us for quite some time. This energy transmission/prayer seeks to go against those efforts. Most of us, irrespective of our religious beliefs or level of commitment to one or another religion, know how to pray. You have likely prayed for yourself and your loved ones at one time or another in your life. Hopefully, you have made prayer a regular part of your life.
Empathy allows us to make a psychic and emotional connection with another person, to actually enter into their mind-space. The separateness between you and the other person fades away. Your ‘self-boundary’ melts away, so that in a sense – or to an extent – you become them.
Last week, imprisoned American pastor Saeed Abedini was able to see his father while in an Iranian prison, and the two were able to pray and worship together for hours without intervention, according to his wife Naghmeh.
The thing is, whether apart or together, peace can only come if we are willing – truly willing – to see, hear and feel the other person. And remember, being ‘right’ offers no peace. Understanding the other person however, does.
In the wake of last week’s attack on a Copenhagen synagogue, a group of young Muslims in Norway have organized a Shabbat “Ring of Peace” around an Oslo synagogue to, in the words of its 17-year-old organizer, “extinguish the prejudices people have against Jews and against Muslims.”
The “We refuse to be enemies” movement has the participation of Arabs, Israelis and Israeli Arabs united in their longing for peace. The slogan has turned into an international social media campaign against the unnecessary deaths in the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the need for peace in the region.