Boston, April 15, 2013, fear raises its ugly head again, the fear which breeds violence, the violence that is breaking our world apart. The fear that is a terror, that terrorizes, that kills and maims exploded in the crowd. The crowd, an international gathering of people, was joyful, cheering, laughing, talking. The runners were running. Then bombs placed by an unknown person or persons burst out into the crowd leaving three people dead and many wounded, some very seriously. This is the horror that the few can inflict on so many, so many.
The Boston Marathon embodies the loving spirit of humanity, the collective coming together of people from all walks of life in a celebration of life. It is that sense of the collective, the loving acceptance of our diversity, the understanding that within that diversity we are all connected that was attacked. We don’t yet know who did this horrific act or why but surely once discovered we’ll hear expressions of hate and fear.
In a culture that has become more and more enamored with violence in the past few decades, it is not surprising that the hate brought about by shutting our hearts to love and connection expresses itself so violently. Our children grow up on a diet of violent video games and junk food. Our politics are polarized and paralyzed. Our military drops bombs on wedding parties. Our president claims the right to kill anyone, anywhere if it is determined that they are a threat to us. Our priorities continue to be bombs, prisons and war instead of health, education and creativity.
And yet we must all work hard in these times not to fall into despair, but to hold onto that vision of the loving spirit of humanity, to remember the people who rushed in to help, to cherish the inherent goodness of the majority. Love must be stronger than hate, though on days like this day in Boston one can doubt, one can doubt.
I love an image that emerged from the next day – early morning runners out and running, refusing to be rendered motionless by fear. And so must we all remain true to our belief in the power of love, not allowing fear and hate to close our heart. Love is stronger than hate and oh what an amazing world it will be when we finally can live that truth.