Let me start this post by saying that I’m not interested in getting into politics on this site, but sometimes something comes along which, in the interest of continuing to address non-dualistic ideas, I simply can’t ignore.
There has been an e-mail circulating the internet lately entitled, “e-mail of the year” suggesting how wonderful it would be if a president of the US (from either party) would give a speech that would begin with detailing two lists of countries. Those that stood by us during the Iraq war would be on one list and the countries that didn’t on the other. The speech goes on to inform those countries that didn’t stand with us that they will no longer receive foreign aid from the US. Well, the rest of the e-mail goes on in pretty much the same vein, promising to hunt down those who dare to hurt us and kill them, guarding our borders with guns, all in the ‘noble’ purpose of solving our country’s problems. Really distasteful stuff. Below was the response I sent back. I thought I’d share it here. If anybody has any ideas on how to stop the madness, please let me know….
“There are many reasons why I think this e-mail is terrible. It perpetuates the “if you’re not with us you’re against us” mentality, which, I feel, is juvenile. I get that people are fed up with a lot of things, but this is an angry knee jerk reaction, which is divisive and puts us in danger of losing our humanity.
Whether we like it or not, countries are made up of people not governments and to deny humanitarian aid to people because they’re not important to our so called agenda or because we don’t like their government is wrong. You can compare that (sort of) to boycotting BP and putting their employees at financial risk because you don’t like the corporation (although it’s time for these BP workers to start re-evaluating their principles and make changes to get away from this corporation – or work to change it, or maybe going to work towards greener forms of energy – but I digress…)
And to make matters worse, people who consider themselves good Christians probably put this e-mail together, which is completely hypocritical. We can’t consider ourselves apart from the rest of humanity – everyone and everything is connected, that’s just the way it is. I have come to view the world and the people in it as one, not separate entities. What we do to each other we do to ourselves. Separation is an illusion and e-mails like this stir up hateful emotions, which I can never condone. So you see, my problem with this e-mail goes way beyond politics.
(I know I’ve used this quote before on this site, but I can’t help myself, so here it is again) Albert Einstein said, “A human being is part of a whole… (but) he experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” I’d rather live my life this way than the way suggested in that e-mail.”
2 thoughts on “Stop the Madness”
That email is pretty vile. Some people seem to really enjoy that sort of wickedness. You do a nice job here of showing the spiritual vacancy of this repugnant political argument.
I actually reference this post in my comment to your “Resolving the Standards of Decency” http://tyrannyoftradition.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/resolving-standards-of-decency/