Tuesday, 13 January 2015

The Pen and the Sword

Image result for a writer
Je suis une machine à penser

I don’t need to review last week’s events in Paris to understand worldwide shock and sadness.  In the hearts of mankind, good and evil live side by side and engage themselves in a power struggle. It’s a struggle that is as old as the hills and like truth it will never go away.

Man is the sum of many parts – body, mind and soul – but he has not yet fully learnt to integrate or refine the intricate mechanisms that make up life enhancing character and talent. Too often one or more aspects are neglected or sacrificed and the journey towards authentic power is rarely begun.

However, when man chooses to access his authentic power and develop his talents for a higher purpose, you can be sure that he will face many obstacles. The powers that claim to rule our world are mostly corrupt – they restrict the truth and allow lies/misconceptions free rein. Creative artistes - writers, poets painters, sculptors and dramatists in every era have been responsible for pricking global consciousness and fuelling the fires of change.

Words and pictures are proven weapons in the war on terror. Words touch us and break down our egoistic guard whilst an image leaves a lasting impression. There are no shortage of visitors to art galleries all over the world who wish to gaze and mull over the enlightened offerings of the greats: Van Gogh, Monet, Michelangelo, Picasso and Shakespeare.

History reminds us of the Renaissance Period where new thinking was ushered in to raise human worth. Human beings started to be thought of as something more than cattle or chattels. Human suffering was depicted in literature, art and drama brought to the masses. Love and tragedy, pathos and piety were written, drawn and acted out.

Words have power, they move and disturb our psychological sediment.  They have to be used with care and consideration. However there is a point of zero tolerance and so words (like the truth) hurt feelings. If we are in touch with our authentic power then we will ask difficult questions of ourselves: do we wish to be hurt by the truth or take comfort from a lie?

Living the lie is what most people opt for otherwise we’d have better human relations, governmental and religious systems. I don’t wish to dwell on the motivations of individuals who find problem solving down the barrel of gun. Picking up the pieces of man’s inhumanity  to man, we face the onerous task of dealing with the less enlightened who believe violence will further their erroneous ambitions!

The less enlightened have less than loving thoughts that include not loving their neighbour, not forgiving their enemy and, worst of all, using a sword/gun to silence a perceived threat. Destroying life is easy for the undeveloped mind and constructing a better world challenging to even the most developed.

As long as mankind believes in the sword as a solution then they will continue to die by it. In time, they may decide to lay down the sword and other dehumanising objects and take up a more humble instrument, like the pen, that can still pack a (metaphorical) punch!

Forgiveness is the spiritual strategy but it challenges equally as the war on terror. Anyone who wants to see the power of words can log in to YouTube and watch the sentencing of serial killer, Gary Ridgway (known as the Green River killer responsible for the murder of 48 women) in 2003. At the end of the trial, each of the victims’ families spoke to the perpetrator directly and many of the messages followed a similar theme. Their words were laced with the deepest vitriol for these heinous crimes, except for one.

One grieving father in a powerful moment says: God tells us that we must forgive, as hard as it is. So you are forgiven, Sir.” Only then do we see the stony faced Ridgeway show a glimmer of genuine emotion akin to remorse.

Evil is evil.  It is not religious or patriotic. Putting good words and appropriate action together to enhance mankind and rid itself of savagery is the struggle that any sacrifice is worth. Though the cries of the bereaved will pierce our hearts, the war for lasting peace continues. Through the penship of mighty scholars, authors, poets and ordinary heroes will  words be sown, to live by and be healed. I think, therefore I am…..and what I am….. is not a killing machine!



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