“May all beings everywhere, on all planes of existence, known and unknown, be happy, be peaceful, be free from suffering.”—Loving kindness meditation by Steven V. Smith
In reflecting on the 20th anniversary of 9.11, just like those of us who were alive the day JFK was shot, I know we all remember exactly where we were and how we got the news of the twin towers going down, killing 3000 and injuring 10,000, including first responders; the American Airlines hijacked plane, which crashed into the Pentagon taking out 125 military and civilians and 45 passengers on the aircraft; and a fourth plane which was diverted from its target by brave passengers and flight attendants who created an insurrection, sacrificing themselves to make certain the enemy’s target was not reached. All 45 aboard were killed when the plane crashed into an open field in Philadelphia.
On November 22, 1963, when JFK was assassinated, I was in Mrs. Griffith’s 8th grade geography class. Even Mrs. Griffith, who was an unusually sour human, seemed to soften up that day as she attempted to support our young minds in processing the unconscionable horror that had just occurred. Disasters can bring sharply into focus what really matters in our human family. Even Mrs. Griffith created some unifying moments that day.
I was born five years after WWII ended, narrowly missing the atrocities created by that war, though have lived through the Cold War (1945-1991), Korean War (1950-1953), Vietnamese War (1955-1975), and now, the war in Afghanistan from October 7, 2001-August 30, 2021. As I am certain you know, because of American forces pulling out, The Taliban, once toppled by U.S. led forces, have quickly surged back to power—with perhaps hundreds of Americans still stranded in an entire country held hostage by tribal heathens—it seems utterly reprehensible that this could have happened. The primal monsters (the Taliban), who are now seemingly in charge again in Afghanistan, attempted to murder Malala Yousafzai in October of 2012, because of her advocacy for women’s education in Pakistan. What do you suppose is becoming of women now in Afghanistan, not to mention anyone else whom the ruthless Taliban deem to be in the way of their agenda? The London Times recently reported: “Taliban fighters have shot dead an Afghan folk singer after they outlawed music and women’s voices on television and radio in the bellwether province of Kandahar, laying the ground for a nationwide ban in an echo of the brutal Islamist regime of 20 years ago.” We can only imagine future horrors with these beasts having come back into power. I highly recommend The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseni Afghan/American author, to give you some insights on how the Taliban operate. I believe these books should be required reading for every American.
And, of course, while our dedicated service people were working tirelessly to help extricate those at risk for being left behind, thirteen of our most courageous marines were killed in cold blood in a suicide bombing at the airport in Kabul: Darin T. Hoover, 31, Johanny Rosario Pichardo, 25, Nicole L. gee, 23, Hunter Lopez, 22, Daegan W. Page, 23,Humberto A. Sanchez, 22, David L. Espinoza, 20, Jared M. Schjnitz, 20, Rylee, J. McCollum, 20, Dylan R. Merola, 20, Kareem M. Nikoui, 20, Maxton W. Soviak, 22,Ryan c. Knauss, 23. The average age of these heroes was 22.5.
As you know, the Taliban are not the only terrorists occupying the planet. Among others, Communist China has been accused of committing crimes against humanity, possibly including genocide against the Uyghur population and other mostly Muslim ethnic groups, as well as those who follow Falun Gong—a spiritual practice based on Buddhist and Dao principles. (I wrote about those being persecuted who follow Falun Gong in an earlier article.)
A few days ago, President Biden announced that businesses in America with 100 or more employees (despite earlier claims that it would never happen), would need to require their workers to either be vaccinated or submit to testing once a week. It would appear that the very government, created by and for the people in 1776 with liberty and justice for all, has decided to overrule that promise with such a demand, among others.
A woman visiting my little alpine village and wanting to attend a music festival went to a local facility to be tested for Covid so she could prove a negative result in order to attend the various concerts. She was refused by the facilities owner, apparently due to her political beliefs and her choice to not be vaccinated until more data has been collected about the effects of the injections.
I have a book coming out soon, Self Belonging, already launched previously, though upgraded with this latest version. The purpose of the material is multifaceted, but one of the main focuses has to do with cultivating everything that will catapult us both individually and collectively into a desperately needed human upgrade.
When launching this material 20 years ago which I started while researching my first book just previous to the 9.11. disaster, I never could have imagined the crescendo of divisiveness in our humanity which we have now reached. All I knew back then, was that I was inspired to pursue the goal of participating in helping to shift humanity toward an improved way of operating, embodying the principals that the masters, who preceded us came here to teach us—loving kindness, compassion, and tolerance for our fellow humans.
“And now, these three remain: Faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love.” 1st Corinthians 13:13
I have faith and hope that we can transcend all that ails us, though in order to do so, tremendous momentum may be required for those of us, who believe it can happen. Let’s let love be our constant companion and guide as we go forward making our contributions.
Believing in you!
September 13, 2021