Pacifism makes sense (if you actually want to live)

Posted: June 2nd, 2010 | Author: admin | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »
Atomic bombing of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945.
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pac·i·fism [pas-uh-fiz-uhm]
  1. opposition to war or violence of any kind.
  2. refusal to engage in military activity because of one’s principles or beliefs.
  3. the principle or policy that all differences among nations should be adjusted without recourse to war.

When it comes right down to it, war is pretty stupid. Even “just wars”, which some may very eloquently, intelligently and convincingly argue that we are morally bound to engage in, are in the end stupid. As are wars over resources, ideology and religion.

Some may argue that we humans are “hard-wired” for conflict. That may have been the case 50, 500 or 5000 years ago but it is not necessarily the case today. It is a documented fact that the brain is “plastic” and re-organizes or re-wires itself based upon internal thoughts and desires. If we want war to cease being an option than we all need to truly believe war is not an option. If we want the cycle to end than we must end the cycle. And that starts with us, as individuals.

I have mentioned this before, an incredibly wise man once told me “do not fear the evil in the world, just concentrate on doing good.” Concentrate on doing good and it will change you. I challenge you to experience this wonder. You may be very surprised how life looks on the other side.

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An opportunity to be like God.

Posted: September 29th, 2009 | Author: admin | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

I have a few thoughts after the culmination of the Jewish New Year and the practice of asking God for forgiveness. In a perfect life, one would be so completely in the moment that all acts and thoughts of ill, greed and other assorted malevolent behaviors would be caught and neutralized before any damage was done. That is certainly something to aspire to, but in the interim honest objective self-reflection and acknowledgment of our thoughts and actions is all that we have. So digging deeply, feeling the empathy and truly asking for forgiveness is a very positive process. But it is only half of our responsibility.

The second part is the absolute necessity for us to forgive. Holding, feeling and reacting to the ills directed at you not only keeps them alive, it nurtures them and allows them to consume you.  One of my favorite Buddhist sayings is “Hatred is like a hot coal, the longer you hold onto it the more intensely you are burned” -I actually want to get that tattooed to the inside of my forearm so I will remember to live it, but that is a post for a different day.

Forgiving is about asking for something, forgiveness is about giving something away. All religions ask of God. Here is an opportunity to be like God, all you have to do is forgive.