Violence in Mumbai, love at home

My condolences to all who have lost loved ones to the terrorist violence in Mumbai. Most of those killed and wounded have reportedly (and not surprisingly) been Indians. But tens of westerners, including US citizens, Brits, and Israelis have also been killed, many of them having reportedly been directly targeted. Each life lost is equally shocking. Each is a loss to the universe.
I’ve had the huge joy of spending much of the past two days with my one-month-old grand-daughter, Matilda. Holding her, and breathing in her baby softness, is a wonderful and restoring thing to do in a world marked by far too much violence. She is so special in every single way. And she has two extremely devoted and capable parents.
But as I appreciate this little person’s special-ness, I am also acutely aware that in a sense she ‘represents’ every other baby, every other person in the world.
All should be equally loved and equally supported.
Unimaginable to think that a baby like her could be targeted for punishment if she happened to be in Mumbai, or in Gaza, or D.R. Congo at this time. Our world is a terrible fractured place. Fractured mainly by the woundedness of all those who wish– and do– violence to others.
Hatred can only ever be overcome by love.

2 thoughts on “Violence in Mumbai, love at home”

  1. Your statement is probably intellectually accurate as it is emotionally or philosophically important. For example, researchers have long known that the most effective method to prevent youth violence and criminal behavior is for young people to bond with healthy adults. Other research repeatedly shows that peer and community influences along with the perception that come hell or high water “I will make it” has more to do with preventing violence than most other factors.
    We do not apply that knowledge in Washington DC where about 300 people die each year. We do not apply it in Afghanistan where almost all sources of tribal and community leadership are dead or have become refugees. We do not apply it in the isolated Pakistani ghettoes of England and Europe that have produced the 9/11 terrorists and the London bombers.
    Oliver Roy, the distinguished French scholar, talks about theses underlying causes in NYT columns and in his books. He says that they cannot find attachment and fulfillment no matter how economically successful they become.
    Too often, we choose to repel the people that need to be brought closer. “You are with us or against us.”
    Bob Spencer

  2. Powerful observations….
    Found myself caught at the Philadelphia Airport yesterday, talking for just a brief few minutes to my son, the Lieutenant, just as he was at the Atlanta airport awaiting “export” to Iraq. Talk about fractured hearts….
    I’m still thinking of him as the irrepressible infant, fearlessly, yet adorably exploring underneath the kitchen sink and cabinets, in our UVA Copeley Hill apartment, — a quarter century ago.
    Now today, we have Jessica, Keith’s one-year-old daughter, here with us for a gathering…..
    Yes, the love still flows.

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