Harbor: Mine for yours?

Like everyone else, I am deeply disturbed, to my core, over the terrorist attack on Paris. Only minutes after first learning of it on Friday night, Lydia and I lit a candle on our home altar which is still burning as I write this, for the people of France.

And a window into my mind and soul opened up.  I have become aware in recent days of the many bombings and massacres and attacks in Beirut and in Baghdad.  I have  been window-167795_640reminded, again, of the unthinkable stream of refugees from Syria pouring toward Europe and other parts of the world looking for . . . yes!  Harbor.

Even in this short time frame, I have called myself and others to look at France, for sure, but also to these other parts of the world that make up our one global family and consider them all as part of the deep tragedy.  When tragedy happens, I expect my immediate people–my local community, my State, and my Nation, to hunker down, to protect and to be patriotic. I don’t need to call for that.  I don’t need anyone to call for that.  Those things will happen like a knee-jerk reaction, and I don’t have a problem with that.  When we are scared, we instinctively move to protect and to drive away the fear-provoking entity.

In other words, in the midst of tragedy, my communities are going to create immediate harbor.

What about those who have no community that can do that for them?  The refugees?  The war-torn countries (Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, to name a few).  We are no longer isolated nations and ethnic groups.  We are a global community whether we want to be or not.

So, in this moment of world unrest and deep pain:  can I trade my harbor for one that is large enough for us all?  I don’t know if I have that kind of power, so can I trade my idea of harbor for an idea of one that might contain us all?

It’s a thought.  And thoughts become things.

Bob Patrick

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