With a mix of outrage and sadness, hundreds of Ukrainian New Yorkers responded to the Russian invasion of Ukraine by gathering in Midtown Manhattan on Thursday to denounce the attack.https://t.co/MOe1fgn1jQ
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 25, 2022
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War has never made sense to me.
We are taught The Golden Rule when we are young: “Treat others as you want to be treated.”
Most of us were taught to “use our words” when we get upset, instead of using our fists.
Some of us grew up hearing the fifth commandment: “Thou shalt not kill.”
War negates all of these basic rules of being human and existing among others.
I can understand (emotionally) a crime of passion. It is in the moment, emotionally charged, and one person is not thinking rationally. I don’t condone it, but I can understand it.
I cannot understand lining up thousands of (mostly) young people (not responsible for the conflict) to kill other people (also not the source of the conflict). It actually boggles my mind.
We have our words. We have these basic rules for humanity. We even have mediators—people trained to come up with compromises and work with two sides until there is an understanding.
In war, it is a known fact—many people will die. People in the military as well as civilians, most of who did not ask, want, or feel the conflict at hand was anything worth fighting for. Each of these people has families and loved ones.
How do buildings and nature being destroyed and people being killed win an argument? They don’t. War is built on gaining so much fear and loss that the other side gives up and into your wants.
We have seen the repercussions of war. Soldiers with PTSD and memories they can’t erase. Families in mourning for lives that can never be the same. Monuments, nature, towns, and cities destroyed or with millions upon millions of dollars of damage.
So much pain. So much loss. So much grief. For people who are not at the center of the conflict and had no issue to begin with.
War has never made sense to me.
This particular recent attack in the Ukraine makes even less sense to me than previous conflicts.
When I was younger, I used to joke the two leaders should “get in the ring” rather than war, which kills thousands of people and causes so much destruction. Of course, that, too, is not the answer, and we’d wind up having boxers or extreme fighters for presidents and leaders. It is still using fists instead of our words or mediation, and I truly do feel violence is never the answer. Violence begets violence.
Sometimes there are leaders who enjoy flexing their muscles, showing they are powerful and can do what they want. It is beyond worrisome and not fair in any way, shape, or form to the people of their country or to those of the country that is in their crosshairs. I would hope there are systems in place in each country to stop one person from doing whatever they want, but that has been proven not to be true several times in our world history.
There is so much separation in the world right now. There has been so much fear and angst the last few years. It is so important we look to hope, peace, love, and how we can help ourselves, each other, our communities, and the world through this time. It can be easy to feel disempowered, but each and every one of us chooses consciously each day where to put our energy. Worry and fear is a natural part of that when we see atrocities happening, but being in that energy all day will not empower us. We can ask ourselves, what can we do?
Right now, we can pray for love and we can pray for peace. We can pray for the people of Ukraine and we can pray for military on both sides. We can pray for the land, buildings, and people affected. We can pray that losses be as minimal as possible. And we can continue to pray for some kind of realization to sink in that war is never the answer and for some kind of nonviolent solution to come to light. Group prayer and group meditation can change the energy of a place and situation.
If you feel inspired to protest, sign petitions, spread the word for prayers—each of these is a powerful way to do something when you are feeling disempowered.
There is always a better way—one that does not cause so much loss. We can pray that the better way is recognized and this war ends quickly. We can pray for de-escalation. We can pray that every single person feels wrapped in some kind of love and safety and that they feel our prayers.
War never made sense to me.
Sending much love to you, Ukraine, and the planet as a whole.