Hoping to See the Nation’s Symbol in a Peaceful State of Being

Last week I went for a sojourn out at Codorus.  I walked along the shoreline, sandaled-feet slipping and sliding in the sand and stones between waterline and shore.  The sun beat down as I stirred up the mud and muck while stepping one foot in front of the other.  Hot, I waded up to my waist, and then sat down on my hunches, the water reaching my neck line.  

Back on the trail, I rounded a bend in the path.  Above and a few feet ahead of me,  a large mass of bird made a lot of commotion as it exited its leafy perch and took flight over the still water of the back cove.  White-feathered head and leggings, and dark brown body and wings, the bald eagle was disturbed from its resting place, or its preying place. 

An excitement coursed my veins.  

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My country is engaged in war.  Chaos seems to reign supreme.  Chaos and misery.  People are blowing themselves to pieces in order to kill other people.  Seeking power, seeking God, seeking to evict the enemy, seeking to stop the insurgency, seeking to restore order, seeking…

Where are the seekers of peace?  Will more troops bring peace?  Will more powerful weapons bring peace?  Will more bombs eventually kill enough of the enemy so as to weaken the “other” side, bringing an end to the war and a start to peace?   

My country is engaged in a proxy war.  If we supply the bombs but don’t drop them, are we absolved of the killing?  If we accuse our enemies of doing the same thing but label it “supporting terrorism,” do we potentially become hypocrites when we learn of the terror raining down on the innocents in the form of bombs that say Made in the USA?   

My country is engaged in the war on terrorism.  Are we powerful enough to kill all the people we consider “terrorists?”  How many more bullets and bombs do we have to build?  How many more young men and women have to die before the last “terrorist” is killed?  Is there going to be an end to the war on terrorism?  How will we measure and know when Mission Accomplished truly occurs? 

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I watched the bald eagle fly across the cove and up over the tree line.  A few flaps of her great wings and she was gone.  Easy and gracefully, she disappeared out of sight. A part of me thought it would have been great to see it catch a fish and fly off with it squirming in its talons.  The bird of prey, preying.  But, I resolved to find satisfaction in having seen the majestic animal as I did:  Mighty.  Yet so peaceful.    I continued on my sojourn wearing a smile I never wore before. 

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In this time of war, madness and destruction, let us take some time in our lives to reflect on “praying versus preying.”  Let it take whatever form works for you.  As long as we are all giving some mental and spiritual capacity to the reality we are living in today, there is still hope.  And for many people, hope is all that exists.

(written 30 July 2006)

One Comment Add yours

  1. Dylan C. says:

    There is going to be no end to this war; the way it’s going.

    Like

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