What do we do when we feel really down about the state of things; when the world seems bleak and our hearts are blackened by the sorrows that have befallen ourselves and others? In a week where there have been terrible tragedies affecting innocent people, where do we go to find some comfort? More importantly, how do those involved find peace?
How do we find a way to deal with all the bad news we hear seemingly day in, day out? Pictures of harrowing sufferings unfold in front of our eyes on our television screens 24/7, and the memories leave their mark and come back to haunt us. Some people tell me they avoid the news; they ask what is the point of listening to it all when the problems are out of our control? I understand this viewpoint and I agree that we need to take ‘time out’ at times, but I liken this to sitting in a darkened room; by turning off the lights the bad things will be cloaked in darkness, but they will still be there when the lights come back on. Best to stay in the light and let these things show themselves.
I know that I do feel like saying: ‘What on earth is happening here, what is happening to our world and its people? Why do such innocent people suffer.?’ A much wiser person than I may have an answer. I certainly don’t. But the old adage is true: one candle can be enough to cause the darkness to go away. Once I choose to raise my own awareness I will have done what I can to defeat the dark side of human nature and to discover that a higher reality can be found and lived.
And perhaps the only thing that seems to help in times of worry and sadness is life’s routine. Getting the chores done, watering the plants, preparing food and feeding the family, walking the dog; all these things demand our attention whatever else is going on. By focusing on the small things we realise that those are the things that get us through. After being out in the frenetic world, watching and listening to what seems to make some people ‘tick’ and the seeming importance of riches, I return home and walk around the nearby meadow and feel the grass under my feet and revel in a pleasure that costs nothing and soothes the soul.
When I go out and walk, I usually put on my headphones and listen to my favourite music or listen to one of my favourite motivational gurus. Soon I seem to find some perspective and realise that this world keeps on turning whatever unrest occurs, and will still be turning when we are long gone. I have to have faith that those taken tragically and senselessly from us, whoever they are, and whether we know them are not, are held somewhere where only love and peace abides. For the mother cut down in her prime, I hope the example she set by striving for a more peaceful and fairer world will stay with us and encourage us to carry on on her behalf. I pray for her children; bereft without their loving mother. I pray for an innocent family mowed down in the street on the sunny last day of summer and the heartbroken ones they leave behind.
I pray with all my heart that the little girl who died at just six years old, at the cruel hands of her own father, will be safely looked after by the angels. I hope that she will be cradled and loved, and feel all the happiness she should have felt all the days of her life on earth.
In the dictionary the definition of bleakness is: cheerlessness, desolation, despondency, dis-consolation, heavy-heartedness and more.
Antonyms of that include: cheerfulness, encouragement, happiness, HOPE, hopefulness.
It’s going to be okay, maybe not today, but someday.
‘Where there is hatred let me sow love.’ Francis of Assisi.
Blessings to you.