Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Don't You?


Many of us will come together to pay our respects to those lives lost on 9/11. We will remember families and loved ones, watch documentaries and read articles that will tug at heartstrings. Days will pass and we’ll go about our business, never giving this day a second thought until next year.

Just like funerals we show up, pay our respects, do the whole hug and kiss thing, and the, “I haven’t seen you in such a long time, but think about you” routine and then when it’s all said and done, we move on until the next family member or friend bites the dust.  We lose interest, and quickly. We say we want to stay connected, but we don’t make the effort.  Why?

When the events of 9/11 occurred I distanced myself. I could not relate to what was going on. I think for a few years after I was in a fog, maybe just a bit in denial. I would later learn that I just didn’t want to deal with it, that it had nothing to do with me (or so I thought) because I didn’t know anyone closely effected. Please don’t misunderstand me, I was scared and sad, but I just didn’t cross the line that would penetrate the inner sanctum that keeps me solid and strong.

For me, it’s not just about 9/11. It’s about everything prior to that day, year, decade, century and beyond. This day requires I think about history as a whole and how we have the opportunity to make or break it. Horrific events are pieces of a much larger puzzle that we need to be viewing if we truly care about changing our planet for the better.

9/11 makes me think about the bomb we dropped on Hiroshima, the African Americans we enslaved, the Indians we bamboozled, the Holocaust and our denial before acting, the Islamic religion we shun because of ignorance, Syria, and the many other events that quite possibly could have seen a more positive outcome if we didn’t live in fear.

I could go on an on, but this is not a contest, and one horrific event doesn’t trump the other. However, they are very telling of how we put our faith in those we hope have our best interests at heart. As the years pass, I don’t believe this is always the case.

I’ve become disillusioned by so many who choose exclusivity, when we need to be all-inclusive. If we become the latter we can prevent another 9/11. We can then open our minds and hearts to diversity, appreciating and understanding what the other person brings to the table that will accelerate the reclaiming of America for all and not a select few.

I’m sad many can’t move on, forgiving, but never forgetting. Those pieces of the puzzle I mentioned earlier require us to do just that. However, never forgetting is not an option because remembering is our power.

Today, I mourn the loss of 2,996 people who perished on a day they never saw coming. Those who died in an instant were lucky because as I write this I am thinking about the people in the planes who had minutes in complete angst over their unfortunate demise. My heart is broken over those devastating scenes I saw on the news of people jumping to their deaths to escape burning. An image that stays with me is of two people holding hands and jumping out of a window, something I find incredibly painful.

I have a very skewed view of organized religion because of the manipulation and intolerance that often ensues. So many (especially the so-called Christians) have made a mockery of that which was meant to produce constant love, not for some, but all. However, I know within me lies a faith in the human spirit and my own ability to overcome those things that bind me. My conscience is my guide, teaching and leading me when I take in all that is good and expelling the negative.

It requires me to find forgiveness. That’s the problem with the world today – we don’t forgive. We want to claim religion as our guide and God as our own, without realizing what God is about, which is unconditional love and forgiveness.

As hard as it is to say, I feel sadness for the hijackers too who were manipulated into a false sense of self, which was born out of extremism. There is no excusing their actions, but I do take pity on their souls – to not only speaks of hate, and that’s a waste of my time and energy.

So, here we are, another sad anniversary. We’ve launched the “War on Terror,” and what do we have to show for it but death, destruction, poverty, causalities, hate, ignorance, intolerance, splintering and fear.

Do I feel safe? I’m not sure what that means anymore. I never feared that which is outside the great U.S. of A because I have always known my country has my back. However, I am more concerned by those Americans who’ve almost become their own little terrorist machines.

Conservatives and liberals have become too extreme, overzealous with their interest in dividing and conquering, thus manipulating the true meaning of 9/11.

Let’s all take time today to look and work with the pieces of the puzzle of history. I’m a piece, and you’re piece and we must all fit together. Of all days, today demands this of us.  I want to live in a world of peace.  Don’t you? – paerki

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Share your views, thoughts and opinions in the written word. Snap photographs so that your eyes can travel back in time, remembering the happy and sad moments that made you the person you were, are and became in life. But, whenever possible, capture video to enhance the memories you leave behind, so that others may pass the essence of your life on to future generations.


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"I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires." - Susan B. Anthony

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