This is the only way it stops.
This is the only thing that really works.
This — the most irrational thing, according to the ego — is the only true, rational solution to the disturbing scenes we come across every day in the media.
Yesterday, I wrote about a disturbing scene I came across online that will likely be haunting me for some time. I won’t drag you back through the swamp here, but it involved a little boy in a hospital room in Aleppo. You can fill in the rest with your mind.
I write the following not to place blame in any way, but to shed some light on something I believe a lot of folks are missing the point on.
The meaning of the crucifixion of Jesus is something that has been translated a million and one different ways. From what I can tell, the most common belief is a very abstract, ethereal one. It points to him dying for our sins — in a way, jumping between us and the freight train of an angry God. Kind of like the older brother when dad comes home drunk and looking to kick the dog.
I’m no religious scholar, but no matter how much I open myself to this interpretation, I can’t see how this idea has made it so far (well, I can, but that’s for a different post). From where I stand, the number one message from Jesus succumbing to torture is this:
The violence ends with me.
Please sit with this for some time.
Even if you don’t call yourself religious or a Christian or even a believer, meditate on this...
See Jesus, not as some ghostly apparition of a man sent down like an alien from some deity in the clouds. See him as a human. See him as a mix of flesh and blood along with the Divine, just like you and I (no, I’m not making this up, all one has to do is read a little).
See him as someone who’s kicked the proverbial hornet’s nest and pissed off the world’s most violent, oppressive regime at that time so much that they wanted him publicly tortured in the town square.
He could have pulled a Bin-Laden. He could have at least gathered an army of his own to try to fight. He could have at least ran into a remote cave with his people and been fine. Would we blame him? Probably not. Jesus would have went down in history as a bad-ass warrior-monk.
But instead, he did the one thing that makes zero sense to the ego, yet the only thing that makes sense in Reality…
He bared the brunt of the violent regime and put into living color a message of peace and sacrificial love.
He proclaimed to the world — not in some viral tweet or Facebook post, but in ripped flesh, broken bone, and his own blood — that the violence ended with him.
Now, did this stop them? No. But it made a huge statement and went totally against the ‘live by the sword and die by the sword’ mentality of the time. He may not have ended war, but he didn’t add to it and he shifted the paradigm.
As I said, I’m no religious scholar and I’m certainly no political strategist. If you are, you’re probably thinking I’m out of my mind right now. And I probably am.
But the way I see it there’s only two choices:
Perpetuate violence or end it .
If we study history, the brave ones who actually end war do the latter. I know we’re not dealing with a ‘traditional’ war.
Some things to ponder for the latter part of your week.