The clock struck midnight and 2017 is over and 2018 has begun. But I suspect the feel of 2017 is far from over. I think it will carry forward without pause into 2018. Leaving aside personal matters, politics, natural disasters, and world events, to me 2017 has been a year of disappointment. Disappointment in humankind. Never have I felt so attuned to the negativity and cruelty of others. I am talking about neighbors, both locally and globally. I am talking about everyday actions and statements that demonstrate the lack of empathy, caring, and downright cruelty that exists within the human psyche.
Read any article, any social media post and you may understand what I am talking about. Look around your community at the poor, homeless, those who appear defeated by life, or at those who just need a helping hand, a smile or a kind word.
Anyone who is different, a different religion, a minority race, another sexual orientation, has differing opinions, or is from a lower economic class are treated with contempt from the majority of the population who enjoy a degree of prosperity, wealth and health. They are often brutally assaulted by word and deed or simply ignored to the point where they are invisible. The lack of kindness, empathy, compassion and civility towards one another is to such a degree that it’s creating a chasm all across the world.
Hatred and contempt have filled the hearts of humankind, which has led to all sorts of vile speech and deeds. Whether anonymously from behind a computer or smartphone or in person on the street, it has become commonplace to put hatred unapologetically on display.
I write this not to assign blame or to analyze the origins and causes of the behavior. I’ll leave that to others to debate. Although I do believe we, the people of many so called democracies, stand at a precipice that can have grave consequences. I simply write this as my observation of life and events that surround us. I write this with all the hope in my heart that kindness and love will rise above the hate.
In order for love to win it must start individually within the hearts of everyone. We must allow the love to enter and grow within us; to manifest and spread to those around us, both near and far. It must be our unselfish intention to bring love, kindness, and goodwill to all members of our human race just as we ourselves yearn to receive such in return.
My sincere hope for 2018 is that the light of love and peace will be accepted and returned by all the hearts of the world, Then, perhaps, love will indeed triumph over hate.