Monday, December 15, 2014
Even the Strongest Armor...can fail you
So once again, two innocent people are dead as a result of a deranged, angry, sickened mind. I am referring to the hostage taking here yesterday in Australia at the Lindt Cafe in Sydney. This country waited and watched yesterday and into the night as these events unfolded. We are still waiting for details and answers, but we do know this. The outcome was tragic for the families and friends of the two hostages that did not come out alive. Our hearts ache for them.
And what of the man, the perpetrator who held these people against their will inside that cafe? Why do I not feel bad about his death? Does anyone? Should we? From what we have learned about him so far, he was not a law-abiding citizen. He was known to police and was involved in an ongoing legal battle and has been charged as an accessory to murdering his ex-wife along with his current girlfriend. He was convicted of writing offensive letters to the families of dead Australian soldiers, among other offenses. Clearly Man Haron Monis was a loose cannon, who finally came unhinged yesterday in Sydney. It is almost impossible not to judge him.
This sort of event is not unique. People come unhinged everyday all over the world. They do not necessarily act out in such a violent manner, but often they do. As I sit here in the peaceful comfort of my home and tranquil life, it is difficult to fathom the minds of these lost souls and relate to them in any way whatsoever. While I am tending to my flowers and herbs in the garden, or creating a healthful recipe for dinner, or walking through the park and appreciating the beauty of nature around me, there are people all over the world on the brink of madness. The contrast is so vast between people like "them" and people like me. When we are jolted out of our peaceful existence by events such as this, it is easy to allow the actions of a few to weigh our hearts down with sadness, anger and grief. It is as though suddenly, all the negativity that has led a man like that to such a severe state of hatred and anger begins to cross over to us, like an energy transfer. It is difficult to feel any compassion for him or to feel sorry that he too died. We tend to see him as a worthless human being. Maybe he was.
Maybe. I do doubt however, that he emerged from the womb as the evil perpetrator he grew into. What led him, or others like him down the wrong path? These are the questions I cannot answer. What is our fascination with these murderers and criminals in our midst? It is as though if we can have some insight into their inner workings, maybe we can spot it in someone and then avoid them, or get them, before they get us. I suppose it is a form of self-preservation. Know thy enemy and all that. But, no matter how much we may step out into the world with all our armor on day after day, you never know when there will be a mad man standing next to you in line at the coffee shop. The two innocent people who did that very thing yesterday, despite any armor they may have been wearing, are still dead. It could have happened to any of us, so all I can suggest is we all just better embrace every minute, every hour, every day and let go of the endless list of worries or grudges or fears or whatever negativity you may be hanging onto and go for the joy...
...whatever that means to you. Today. Tomorrow. Next week. Next year.