by "stirrer" Craig Lock
"Those who make a peaceful revolution impossible, will make violent revolution inevitable."
- rather wise and prophetic words from a great leader, John F Kennedy
I wrote this piece some time ago just before the start of the Iraq invasion) in a "moment of passionate motivation and/or inspiration")*, so after seeing the horrific images on television of more daily bombings in Iraq and the killing of ever-more innocent children in Baghdad, my heart bleeds and that is why I sending out my thoughts in an attitude of sorrow, as well as a sincerely feeling that I should express my opinions...hopefully to make some small difference and a better world sharing these personal thoughts (as all I can do is write).
* Incidentally, after being published in Shelley Lowery's Article Announce, a doctor in India advised me that he was inspired to forward copies of my article on to President Bush and Mr Blair just before the onset of the Iraq war (though I very much doubt they got read - it's nice to know that some of my writings are appreciated and perhaps make a small difference in people's lives). Thanks, Shelley for your great work in bring writers and publishers together.
Author's Note: I feel "these eternal truths" mentioned in this piece are even more evident in today's ever more chaotic, intolerant, divided and unsafe world (thanks, President Bush!). Incidentally, I was a great admirer of your President and the way he handled the aftermath of 9/11. Unfortunately, with most of the world united with the US (and behind them as a "global superpower") in an outpouring of sympathy, I believe he totally squandered a wonderful opportunity to unite world-wide forces of good to mobilise against the evil of terrorism...and so lead countries in a spirit of global unity to help build a better and safer world. Like the great majority of people OUTSIDE the USA (apparently about 85 per cent, I hear), through his misguidedness in linking Iraq with Sept. 11 and instead of choosing a united front against world terrorism (with the world behind him), I believe your "perceived 'Texan cow-boy' of a President" (at least from this distance) has done a great disservice in protecting the citizens of your great country. I truly believe his fixations, arrogance, inability to admit mistakes, misguidedness in foreign policy, Christian fundamentalism and zealousness, inflexibility in understanding other cultures, insular (zenophobic - big word, eh?) thinking and stubborness (enough "weaknesses, vices, character flaws" for you?) are a great danger to the future security of the modern world... and yes, the security and stability of your own country, the USA. The incumbent President's legacy to humanity, I believe will be that of a more violent, chaotic and divided world, when the USA should be widely respected as the sole Super-Power and the world leader of nations. I truly hope that your great country can regain that trust and respect in the world one day.
As misguided, misinformed and "insular in his thinking" (from his "limited world view regarding other cultures - their values and beliefs") as I feel your President was, I can appreciate the decisiveness and courage he took in making his momentous decisions regarding the war in Iraq. I accept that he acted in utmost good faith (and integrity?) at the time; as we're all human and make mistakes; however some people are doomed to repeat them. Personally, I can forgive your President in helping to create a more dangerous world in which my beloved sons will grow up and live; yet still love and pray for him (for guidance) ...and respect him as a fellow human being with prejudices, weaknesses and frailties, like all of us. (Incidentally, I truly believe God can turn our weaknesses into our greatest strengths, if we just TRUST).
"My strength is made perfect in your weakness." (II Corinthians. 12:9)
Enough politics, and stirring with your personal opinions, "meddling" Craig!
"Those who fail to learn from the lessons of history (whether from lack of wisdom, misguided religious zeal - in order to leave a lasting legacy, or from a "limited world view") are doomed to repeat it."
The Universe operates on the basic principle of cause and effect. Every action of ours has a consequent REACTION. The unshakable Law of the Universe: Cause and Effect The "Law of Nature" = Growth.
Our thoughts create our reality - the HIGHER the BETTER (but don't be so "airy-fairy" spiritual, you're no "earthly good"). So let our thoughts (lofty), our actions and our lives be mirrors of the better society, the better world we'd like to create in the future.
Plant seeds and you get growth (in business and in life). Plant good thoughts and you get good results. Plant bad thoughts and bad things happen. Plant conflict and you get conflict. Plant violence and you get violence ("An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth - tit for tat" - the cycle doesn't stop - "violence begets violence" - witness Israel and Palestine today). Plant help and you get help (from other people and other countries).
So why not then do all we can to help the hundreds of thousands of suffering and innocent Iraqi citizens (particularly children and women)?
Plant "lofty" thoughts and you reap "high" results. Plant great thoughts and you get great results. Plant a spirit of reconciliation and you get reconciliation (An enemy is just someone, who does not understand you... and who you do not understand... YET)... Talk, mediate, enter into negotiations - "positive/constructive engagement" with one's enemies (even "tyrants")... and you could be surprised how common are our ideals and aspirations, as human beings inhabiting planet earth. People just want to live in peace and do the best for their families. Plant forgiveness and you get forgiveness. Plant thoughts of peace and you get peace (and with all resources FOCUSSED on peace you get focussed results, ie. economic GROWTH and PROSPERITY in countries and in people... for ALL - and not just the military!). Plant faith in the future and you get even greater faith... and less poverty in the world Plant hope and you get more hope and less "poverty of thought" AND love (which is spiritual in nature - a spiritual energy) Even when wronged and terribly hurt by others, plant love and you will reap love in return... because love is the greatest and most powerful force in the world... to accomplish absolutely ANYTHING!
So why not like Jesus Christ, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther-King, Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi and Mohamed (many of them of different religious beliefs, by the way; yet ALL "great-souled people", united by a common spiritual bond of LOVE for one's fellow man) in our own small way reach out to help others (even 'ordinary' Iraqis) to make a better world. Each one of us 'ordinary citizens' (insignificant though we may feel) has a responsibility to raise the standards of our societies, our countries and the world. It's up to us fortunate enough to be living in democracies to tell our leaders that we want the bar to be raised in what we will and will not tolerate.
The Power of ONE: As "children of God", each person CAN make a difference (I truly believe that and that is my reason for sharing this piece publically)...a slightly better world than before you arrived on this planet.
"Instead of barriers and walls, let us build bridges... rather than barriers and borders, let us look at distant horizons together... as citizens of a shared humanity."
"Let each one of us build bridges rather than barriers, openness rather than walls. Let us look at distant horizons together in a spirit of acceptance, helpfulness, co-operation and peace. Let our leaders look at the future with a vision - to see things not as they are, but what they could one day become." - craig
Let us FIGHT the "war of evil" with passion - with every ounce of our energy, the way the military fight in times of war. Let us FIGHT FOR PEACE with every fibre of our being ... yet in a spirit of concern and even love for our fellow inhabitants of this planet.
Do that and I gurantee that JUSTICE WILL eventually prevail. The evil forces of terrorism and "tyrants" WILL be eliminated by all reasonable countries working together in a spirit of peaceful co-operation. I think it was Einstein who said that the great problems of this world can only be solved by a higher level of thinking (or consciousness) than that which created them. A very wise principle... and yes, practical too, eh!
There IS a SPIRITUAL SOLUTION to any "seeming impossible" problem.
God, let our light shine to illuminate a darkened world. Dear God, broaden our horizons for all the rich promises you have in store for each one of us, Your children. In so doing, you will promote better understanding and acceptance of others... and so enable us to build a better world for ALL peoples.
With action, great faith, LOVE of others, the right SPIRIT and God's help, we WILL one day WIN the "War against Terror", the "War for world PEACE"
Lord, raise our Spirit of Humanity and bless ALL the inhabitants of this world.
Craig Lock ("Peace Campaigner and Distributor") <a href="http://www.craiglockbooks.com" target="_blank">http://www.craiglockbooks.com</a> <a href="http://www.craiglock.com" target="_blank">http://www.craiglock.com</a>
"The greatness of a nation consists not so much in the number of it's people or the extent of its territory as in the extent and justice of it's compassion."
- Inscription at the Horse Memorial in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, for horses killed in the Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902).
P.S: Jesus Christ challenged the conventional thinking of the day (as He no doubt would today). As Christ said 2000 years ago, "Love thy enemies". It takes a great person of incredible strength of character to do that in the face of the deepest hurts... but I truly believe it is the ONLY answer to the greatest problem (lack of attempts at understanding other people and cultures). The immense problems of this world cannot be solved at the same level of thinking that created them. If we put all our resources and imaginations together and do it right, with total commitment in a spirit of love and acceptance of others... then other immense and seemingly insoluble problems of the world, like violence and poverty will be alleviated.
We human beings CAN and WILL eventually solve them in this often very cruel, diverse, mysterious, yet still incredibly beautiful and magical world. With action by ordinary people + great faith, NOTHING is impossible. Do all you can with every fibre of your being, then simply TRUST. Life is a miracle... and we have to trust not man or countries, but God for justice to prevail.
I am reminded of something Mahatma Gandhi's said not long before he was assassinated:
"When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible; but in the end, they always fall. Think of it, ALWAYS."
"There is only one thing that has power completely, and that is love. Because when a man loves, he seeks no power, and therefore he has power. Only strive for power if it is not at the cost (expense) of other men (people). Power corrupts. You have to be pure and righteous first, before one can attain power. I believe that love is a greater force than power.
Powerful and moving words from that great South African humanitarian, Alan Paton, who wrote the beautiful work 'Cry the Beloved Country' in 1948.
"Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire." Pierre Teilhard de Chardin "Love suffers long and is kind. Love does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. And now abide faith, hope, love; but the greatest of these is love."
1 Corinthians 13
"When the world is filled with love, people are overflowing with hope." - Craig Lock
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