Peace first

Whenever I have a strong reaction to an event, I always question myself. Most of my regular readers will know that I don’t delve into current affairs very often, if at all. I stopped watching the news about seven months ago on the advice of one of my best friends and it freed my mind and my time. Instead of a 6pm ritual of turning on the television, I began reading, writing, dancing, listening to music or having a cuppa or a cider on my balcony. You’ll also know that I’m a lover and a fighter in equal parts. A lover of peace, kindness and compassion, but in equal parts a fighter when it comes to my dis-ease and if someone I love is being hurt.

But with the wrecking ball of a situation in Boston after the marathon bombing and the shooting of a police officer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, I’ve had a rising bubbling in my belly. Then this morning when I was checking in with what was going on in the world, I saw this photo which made me feel uncomfortable.


I can only comprehend the relief people felt when the perpetrators were respectively killed and caught, but to celebrate in this way by high-fiving and fist-pumping just doesn’t bode well with me. Relief and celebration are two very different things, as William Campbell, whose sister Krystle was killed while waiting for a friend to cross to the finish line. He told the Boston Globe: ‘I’m happy that nobody else is going to get hurt by these guys, but it’s not going to bring her back.’

My imagination cannot and does not afford me how the families of the killed and maimed must feel. Their hurt, anger and horror are nearly impossible to reconcile, but celebrating the death of another human being – as inhuman as they may be, and as inhumane as the acts they carried out – a celebration doesn’t gel with me. I understand how the concept works for others, but the byline of ‘We got them’ didn’t have me in a state of rejoice. It was more of an abatement of pressure that no one else was going to be hurt. But it also made me question.

Why did these two brothers do what they did? What drove them to kill and wound as many people as they could with their crudely made bombs? One brother was a medical student, learning how to extend life, not take. Perhaps we will never know, despite the current and future media speculation this case will attract. It is easy to not treat these people as human beings.

Seeing the photo of celebrating crowds, my stomach turned. I called upon my compassion for both the dead and the survivors, including the two brothers who have caused interminable pain and suffering for thousands of people for generations to come. But what of their families? There has to be compassion on both sides if we are to march through the grief and emerge on the other side, stronger and united in our stand and passion for peace. May the river of compassion always run through you. Then again, sometimes compassion is not enough.

In case there is any confusion, in no way, shape or form am I downplaying what dreadful acts were carried out in Boston last week, nor am I saying it’s ‘ok’. It’s not. Innocent people were murdered and seriously wounded.

All I’m trying to do is sit in a state of compassion, which is not always easily done in situations like these. But I am trying, and I believe that counts for something. I’m inviting a ‘call to compassion’ instead of a ‘call to arms’. Your thoughts, please ♥

15 thoughts on “Peace first

  1. Beautifully written, and it echoes so much of what has been going through my own mind.

    I believe that we hurt others when we ourselves are hurting. No-one could sit in a space of empathy, understanding or kindness and commit this sort of act.

    There is no magic pill going to take all this pain away. No fix for the families and all those whose lives have been irrevocably changed in the most unimaginable of ways.

    I stand beside you, Carly, calling for peace in our hearts, and hard as it can be – mustering compassion for all.


    1. Thanks Nic 🙂 I just felt it needed to be written – a call to peace and forgiveness. The only way to move on from something as horrific as this is forgiveness. It won’t be easy, but I always find it necessary to move on and get out of my head and into my heart ♥


  2. Oh precious, you could not have said it any better … Taking a life, no matter whose is never something to celebrate … The way I see it, if we were to celebrate their deaths, how is that any better than the acts they themselves are being condemned for? There is no justification for it … But as I get older I seem to be becoming stronger in my opinion to oppose the death penalty. I feel a deep sadness and gratitude for those who work in jobs where taking another life may be required. It is a hardship they bare. And now that I’m babbling on to my own tangents, I hope you are finding the calmness you require to get through this my dear.
    Neen xoxo


    1. There’s a deep sadness that pervades when anyone dies, even if the person has committed terrible acts. There’s a part of me that’s still in favour of capital punishment, but my gosh, there’s a big part of me where something about it just doesn’t sit right xoxo


  3. Carly, thank you for saying what needed to be said and so eloquently!

    Hate will only breed hate. Unfortunately, it is what sells newspapers and keeps the mob mindset glued to their “boob tubes”. TV may have some merits but in limited quantity… xx


    1. Cheers, Lea ♥ It’s very much like the law of attraction, where ‘like attracts like’. Hatred is only going to attract hatred, and people seem to have knee jerk responses to what the media ‘reports’. Funnily enough, I watched the news last night and it just left me feeling washed out and empty xoxo


      1. Yet when someone has gone out of their way to do something positive, it is buried on the back page (so to speak) if it is mentioned at all.
        Have you ever given thought to the fact we are quick to tell someone they have done wrong but rarely if ever acknowledge when someone has done the right thing?
        Now you know why I had to study Psychology… nothing I saw made sense. 🙂


  4. Our local paper’s headline was “Boston Joy” – wtf?? The opposite of dysfunction is dysfunction, the mid-line is where sanity resides. It is hard not to despair when the extremes are so loudly proclaimed. Thank you for giving voice to the many voices of compassion that I have to believe are out there.


    1. Wow. There is no joy in war, but society seems to fall into patterns of a mob mentality when something like this happens. I really wish there was more good news in the media, but every bulletin or broadsheet is punctuated with ALL OF THE SHIT. You have to delve deep to find any goodness, and when good news happens, it almost comes as a shock. Thanks for your comment, Julie ♥


  5. thank you for passing by my blog which give me the opportunity to check on yours, I was mentioning exactly the same just 2 days ago to a friend. I was disgusted by people feeling happy for what is going on in the Middle East. Revenge can not cure the society, justice might help, but not revenge.


    1. Hi Nikki (or Nicole – which do you prefer?) 🙂 While I understand the concept of revenge, I’ve never prescribed to it. It’s bad energy (or as I say ‘bad juju’) and nothing good can come of it. May justice – and peace – prevail xo


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