Sleep baby sleep

If I wasn’t praying for Somalia,Iraq,Syria,Burma, the Ugyurs, Muslims in Central Africa, do I have a right to object to others lamenting their allies? Isn’t that… Hasad? Envy?

If I’m angry with the oppressive powers that started this global fire, why am I denying those who were killed or maimed or lost loved ones – many of whom are Muslims – why am I denying them my empathy?

Is it because I buried my empathy when Somalia,Iraq,Syria,Burma,- were burning, and now the smoldering embers are being dug up by people showing the solidarity and empathy I should have showed, but cowered away from? The world is on fire and I want to bury it so that I can go back to sleep.

“Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.” 

― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

rusty hopes

Chained bicycle

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In every community, there is work to be done.
In every nation, there are wounds to heal.
In every heart, there is the power to do it.
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Marianne Williamson

Rwanda

I’m watching Hotel Rwanda as I’m typing this, and I’m completely devastated and in tears over the horrific events. I imagine being a Tutsi in Rwanda, having the West withdraw all of its troops and only get their foreign nationals out, while leaving us to be slaughtered because we don’t matter. Because we are Africans. In 100 days, 800,000 Rwandans were slaughtered with machetes – children were especially targeted to hamper the next generation of Tutsis. So much hate. As I’m watching it, I sense an urgency to look away. To watch it and not do anything. Not write about it. I realize it’s because I avoid my own pain and seek pleasure to plug my feelings, so how would I be able to do anything for the atrocities that occur today? We are so heavily vested in entertainment, here in the West, and there is a heavy price to pay for our hedonism. We pay with our consciousness, we pay with our compassion, we pay with our determination – we pay with our lives. We remain zombie-like, awaiting the death of our bodies, carrying around the corpse of our souls.
In one scene, Paul Rusesabagina (played by Don Cheadle) who is the hotel manager that saved 1,200 Rwandans by hiding them in the hotel, asks a reporter how the world would remain apathetic when they watch the horrendous footage? The reported replied; ‘ they will see it, say how horrible it is, and return to eating their dinner.’
How familiar this sounds. Likes and retweets appease the gnawing guilt and frees the conscience to indulge in ignorant bliss.

I just realized how connected we are as humans. I realized how important it is for me to overcome my fears and wounds that cripple me, because there are countless humans suffering all over the world, counting on ‘someone’ to do something. And while I can’t be the someone to rescue all, I can be something to someone; if only by a word of comfort.

Indeed, the only change we can make is the one within. And it’s the one most neglected.

Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
Leo Tolstoy

And what exactly is meant by changing oneself to change the world? Is it to pose as a role model to be followed? To inspire? No. It has nothing to do with the desired outcome, for that is to pursue selfish agendas and feed egos. It’s simply about embodying the things that are lacking in this world or the things you want to see but aren’t. It’s simply about being a beacon of light. A lighthouse. Not thinking about amassing crowds and followers, or gain fame and money in order to do something. No. It is to awaken what lies dormant in all of humanity; hope. When Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr., or every other revolutionary set off on their first steps they never fathomed to create such lasting change. They did it because it was intrinsic to them. Something within them deprived them of their sleep at night, deprived them of peace of thought, inflicted searing pain in their gut when they saw the rampant injustices around them.

We all have something to do on this earth, and the magnitude of this purpose is irrelevant. When you conquer your inner demons, imagine what injustices you could conquer in this world? When you heal your own pain, imagine what pain you could soothe in this world? You get what you give in this world, and that will either be your reward or your punishment. Give love, get love. Give indifference, be invisible and unloved.

The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.

Jim Morrison

Be inspired : 15 quotes about injustice

1.When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always.  –  Mahatma Gandhi

2.Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth. – William Faulkner

3. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.- Martin Luther King Jr.

4. Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities – Voltaire

5.We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

6. In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousand fold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations- Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

7. Instead of hating the people you think are war-makers, hate the appetites and disorder in your own soul, which are the causes of war. If you love peace, then hate injustice, hate tyranny, hate greed – but hate these things in yourself, not in another.- Thomas Merton

8. I guess the only time most people think about injustice is when it happens to them.- Charles Bukowski

9. I am a person who is unhappy with things as they stand. We cannot accept the world as it is. Each day we should wake up foaming at the mouth because of the injustice of things.- Hugo Claus

10. The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.- Albert Einstein

11.The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.- Edmund Burke

12. The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men. – Plato

13.How easy it is to judge rightly after one sees what evil comes from judging wrongly. – Elizabeth Gaskell

14. God did not create evil. Just as darkness is the absence of light, evil is the absence of God. –Albert Einstein

15. The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but

shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more,
but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and
smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees
but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more
problems, more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little,
drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too
little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom. We have multiplied our
possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and
hate too often.

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life. We’ve added years to
life not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but
have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer
space but not inner space. We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We’ve conquered the atom,
but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but
accomplish less. We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more
computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we
communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small
character, steep profits and shallow relationships.

These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but
broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway
morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything
from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the
showroom window and nothing in the stockroom.              –   Bob Moorehead

Pan & Zoom

” You pardon yourself if you do wrong

But other than you are left unpardoned;

You see in his eye a speck of dust;

Whilst in yours a tree trunk you see not!”

 

Muhammad ibn Maqatil

From the ways of our pious predecessors pg.107

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