As I looked into the big brown eyes of my 5 year old, it suddenly dawned on me; the reality of the times of this world we have birthed him into.
“Be kind, my son. And spread love. The world needs lots of love.” I whispered as he closed his eyes sleepily. The enormity of my words and meaning were lost on his innocence. His unbridled passion currently is: for who had what toy first, and who is first to the top of the stairs each night. This, for him, is a cause worth fighting for, even if it means the risky move of grabbing his sisters' leg and pulling her back down the stairs so he can claim victory... Strangely not dissimilar to the world we are in.
This world doesn't give the impression of being a mature adult world. When I look around me, it can be like a 5 year old's playground for mankind: “I don't like you.” “I want to get to the top first.” “He's a loser.” “It's mine!” “I want to press the button!” “I'm taller than you are!” “I'm first!” “You're not allowed in!”
Stephen Colbert from The Late Show gave a powerful speech of love and kindness on his show recently in regards to the cruel happenings on the U.S southern borders, whereby children are being removed from their parents to create a deterrent. Jeff Sessions (current Attorney General of the United States) is claiming random biblical verses back up these shocking actions.
Even Session's own church issued a statement strongly condemning his zero-tolerance immigration policy, saying Christ “would have no part in ripping children from their mothers’ arms”. It also said he would not shun “those fleeing violence”. I wonder if Sessions' views would change if his own two daughters and son were being taken from him. If he was born into a different culture and country, where life meant fleeing to find a safe haven.
The Neo-Nazism & Nationalism Factor
According to DW (Deutsche Welle, Made for Minds – a German broadcaster celebrating 65 years of broadcasting):
"President Trump's first year in office proved to be just as racially divisive as his campaign ― but even more consequential," the report said. "President Trump in 2017 reflected what white supremacist groups want to see: a country where racism is sanctioned by the highest office, immigrants are given the boot and Muslims banned."
Julie Nathan from the Executive Council representing Australia's Jewish community says, Australia's new Nazi's, Antipodean Resistance is growing.
“Although Nazism remains on the political fringes, adherents are increasingly active and emboldened in propagating the antisemitism, white supremacy, racist hate and homophobia that are intrinsic to Nazi ideology". (abc.net.au)
I have lost a friendship due to this growing Australian underground movement, perhaps not specifically the Antipodean Resistance, but something very similar. She has simply 'disappeared' from my life. I miss her terribly and I worry for her, but I also trust her heart. A heart that was so open and loving when we spent so much time together in our twenties and early thirties.
The Refugee Factor
I am a passionate supporter of genuine refugees, with a plight of fleeing their country for the sake of their and/or their family's lives. The humanitarian crises around the world, and especially in our Australian off-shore detention centres is hugely concerning to my heart. For the sake of a few who 'work the system', the people genuinely needing our help are being punished instead.
Processing centres aren't processing. Instead, basic human rights are being ignored in detention centres, and the people fighting the system within these walls are becoming mentally and physically ill – and the general Australian public turn their back with ill-informed, misguided views of the situation. Which in effect, are selfish and racist. The message of the One Nation Party in Australia has done nothing but aid the hate towards the Muslim community (in particular).
What does it all mean?
With Trump loitering his pointer finger of power over a nuclear war button, the neo-nazi and nationalism rant on the rise (again), North Korea and Russia with regular displays of peacock-ery (still), the gay community being told they aren't equal (especially if they want to get married or buy a cake to celebrate it) - I do wonder what history has taught us. What is the point of love and kindness if we just pocket it away due to our (5 year old) unconscious displays of power, ego, discrimination, exclusion and authority? It means... nothing.
Online wars break out around the world via social media. Whether it be political, social, philosophical or theological.
Change the World? Change You.
I recently fell upon a quote which rang true to my soul:
"Would you like to liberate yourself from the lower realms of life? Would you like to save the world from the degradation and destruction it seems destined for? Then step away from shallow mass movements and quietly go to work on your own self-awareness.
If you want to awaken all of humanity, then awaken all of yourself. If you want to eliminate the suffering in the world, then eliminate all that is dark and negative in yourself.
Truly, the greatest gift you have to give is that of your own self-transformation. So find a teacher who is an integral being, a beacon who extends his light and virtue with equal ease to those who appreciate him and those who don’t. Shape yourself in his mold, bathe in his nourishing radiance, and reflect it out to the rest of the world. You will come to understand an eternal truth: there is always a peaceful home for a virtuous being."
This is my heart and my view. I will continue to focus on the light and virtue that I can spread to the world through my own self-transformation. With the loud, clanging noise of what i consider "evil" (hate, exclusion, racism, selfishness), there is always an equal and opposite rising. And this continues to drive me in my focus. I am encouraged by humankind.
Let us think on what our words are doing, even under the guise of being “transparent”, “sold-out”, or “standing on our 'truth'.”
Love, and be kind. Because, what are your alternatives?
Belinda has always enjoyed expressing herself. Her mediums have included dance, painting, writing, text messages and performing for local theatre companies. In 2010 she was invited to write comment articles for Press Service International which culminated in her winning the 'Basil Seller's Australian Young Writer of the Year' award in 2015. Her writing is now published at cinemafaith.com, patheos.com and periecho.com. Belinda lives on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia.
See previous articles by Belinda Croft