Life is One Insoluble Puzzle

We know what is good for us.
These are the deep longings in our hearts.
Love, peace, compassion, brotherhood.
Yet, we end up doing the opposite.
Wars, violence, conquest, oppression.

Many in the West are spurred by greed and selfishness.
Creating wealth and amassing riches
Way beyond their capacity to use them.
In the end, wealth is used for the frivolous and the vacuous.

Muslim militants are driven by anger and hatred.
Seeing Western culture as the work of the devil
Destroying anything that comes from the West but not their weapons of war.
In the name of the god they worship,
They would kill, kidnap and persecute those who believe otherwise.

The emerging tigers of the East are moved by pride and arrogance.
It is all about me-first and looking out for Number One.
They suck the earth resources dry in the drive for materials to feed their factories
To produce cheap goods to sell to the rest of the world.
Often at the expense of human lives and dignity.

Meanwhile, the rest of the world watches in hunger and poverty.
Millions die of diseases for which we have the cure.
Millions more go to bed hungry when there is food rotting in the warehouses of the rich.
And billions lead lives of unrelenting poverty
when billions are being wasted in frivolous and vacuous activities,
billions more are spent in the weapons of war,
and billions worth of wealth is created that does not respect human life and dignity.

And yet we know in our hearts what it would take to heal the world:
Love, kindness, generosity, forgiveness, compassion,
the human race living as one community, in harmony.
We parents often get frustrated when our children do not learn what we teach them.
But it seems we adults are more difficult to teach and to learn
That what we yearn most deeply in our hearts
Is what we need to heal the world.

I will hear what God proclaims; the LORD – for He proclaims peace.
Psalm 85

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples,
“The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat;
therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it;
but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach.
They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear,
and lay them on the shoulders of others;
but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them.
. . .
. . .
The greatest among you will be your servant.
All who exalt themselves will be humbled,
and all who humble themselves will be exalted.”
Matthew 23:1-12

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