I’ve been aware of the Cold War from early childhood. The Berlin wall went up when the year I was born. I was taught through the media that I hated the Russians, and the East Germans as well. I hated Communists and Communism. Had no tolerance for Fascists. At least until I gained the age of reason (about 12 years old) and began to wonder why the Russians hated us and we them. In WWII I was taught that we had Russia’s back, but ever since then they have secretly hated America. Why, I always wondered.
About the same time the Vietnam war ended. I can remember watching the news with my mother as the last helicopters were leaving. The horror of that moment hit me. Women trying desperately to at least save their children, pushing them toward the soldiers and safety. How amazingly awful! That a parent should have to abandon their child to the unknown, rather than almost certain death. I can’t imagine the heartbreak of a moment like that.
I remember when I was a couple years older and the Irish were fighting the English, or the Catholic Irish were fighting the Protestant Irish..I never quite understood who. The IRA would blow things up. Terrorist acts, just like the fanatics. And then Carter got peace in the Middleast, but of course that didn’t last.
And now we have been fighting in Afghanistan more than 10 years! Longer than WWII, Korea, or Vietnam! And why? Because Americans hate Afghanis? Because Christians hate Muslims? Because of hate.
I don’t understand hate. It doesn’t serve a good purpose, so is it natural to humans? It would appear so.
I don’t understand how a religious person can say, “It’s God’s Will.” or something about his mysterious ways. I learned by the time I was 13 that I didn’t dig this spiteful, or uninvolved god. What kind of mystical dogma gives them peace when another soldier is killed just because he was different from you. Didn’t believe in the right god. I couldn’t balance this in my own moral core. What kind of god do I need help from? Why should I have the freedom to pray directly to god, until I got into a church, then I needed a translator in the form of a priest. Repeating the same dogma that was spouted during the Inquisition and Holy Wars.
I don’t understand War or Religion, in fact you cannot separate the two. Without one the other cannot exist. Have you noticed? Why is it old men and women send the young men and women to War? Well, for one thing, you can better control a young person. They’re used to following directions from teachers and parents, they fall easily into listening to the patriotic talk and taking it to heart, when they should be dancing at sock hops.
How does the world keep repeating this wanting of revenge, for isn’t that what our war with Iraq was? And Afghanistan. Revenge for those killed in 9/11. Take entire countries (people in the millions) to war to avenge thousands. How is that sensible? Why is logic dead? The war mongers are usually also the bible quoters. “An eye for an eye” they say, and do not want to hear you ask, “Is that what Jesus would have done?” Because that answer would be NO. That is NOT what Jesus would do, not the Jesus I was taught about. He was kind, giving to the unfortunate, caring for the ill. Do you really think that a man who (supposedly) went quietly through his torture and death because it pleased his father, would want entire countries warring?
And why does everyone have to go along with it? The presidents and kings and elected officials decide whether or not to go to war. No survey is taken. No vote. No, our government officials decide for us. This is surely the same in every country. The religious pray, the priests pray. What do they ask for? or do they ask? “Dear god, please, not another war”? Or are they praying, “Let us defeat our enemies)?
Myself I meditate on peace and try to be a good human in my part of the world, and try to spread the word. Oh, and I don’t watch the news, especially CNN (but I’ll leave that for another blog).
Marx said Religion was the opiate of the masses. Pious people falling off the cliff like lemmings. Marx is also quoted as saying, “The first requisite for the happiness of the people is the abolition of religion.” I’d take it a step further and say, Peace could be had by the abolition of religion.