I do not like who I used to be. There is no doubt I’m a better person than I was, far beyond that which once caused me self-disgust, but I do wonder if there are other traits laying in relative dormancy, waiting for an unknown catalyst that will allow them to come festering to the surface. If they are anything like what happened to me here, I both dread and welcome it. This entry does not reference any addiction; it addresses a personality flaw that came to light in the weeks following 9/11. If you’re wondering how this could align with the ongoing topics of self-improvement, self-actualization, and recovery, read on. You’ll realize by the end of this article why I’ve written it.
Tuesday morning, September 11th, 2001….. Two co-workers and I were at a high school in Denver awaiting the delivery of an underground acid tank that was to be installed as part of the laboratory remodel. Our work load was light and there was nothing to do but wait. I was getting caught up on paperwork to pass the time while we listened to the radio in the trailer. Normal programming was soon interrupted and news came on that a plane had struck the World Trade Center. The DJ said there might be some deaths. My first thought went back to WWII when I had read about a bomber hitting the Empire State Building. There were some casualties and the structure is obviously still there, so while there was an immediate concern for the events so far, my initial reaction was more of curiosity than horror. With nothing else to do I suggested we go to one of the empty classrooms where construction was taking place and turn on a TV to see if we could get some more information. Like everyone else in the nation we had no idea what we were about to witness.
We came in just in time to see another plane fly into the second building; and although I had no insight to my reactions at the time, this is where my character defect started kicking in. I ask you, the reader, to forgive me for what I’m about to say. It’s difficult to write about, but I feel it’s an important observation nonetheless. Bear with me and you’ll find out how everything came out on the other side.
In my opinion it’s rude to slow down past car accidents to gawk at the wreckage. I’ve always been one to insist on NOT looking out of respect. It’s reprehensible behavior and I’ve been practicing what I preach all my life; that is up until that morning. It was so difficult to not look. I remember dozens of shaky camera angles; obscured views from the sky and street where confusion and panic were being voiced. Images flitted across the screen while stoic news reports and random speculations were voicing their opinions in the background. And then it happened. None of us watching really saw the first tower fall, but we did see the second one. Its mighty bulk tilted ever so slightly and disintegrated into itself obscured by a giant cloud of smoke and dust. Like so many of us the image is burned into my memory, unfortunately so was my reaction to it. All I could think was, “Wow, that’s good special effects!” I might have even said something, I don’t really remember. I was so detached from the event I had no empathy about it for some time. The question was, why couldn’t I feel anything?
Three weeks have passed now. I don’t think our enemies were counting on the reaction we had as a nation. If they expected us to cower and crumble, well, THAT didn’t happen. If anything our resolve was strengthened by the disappearance of all the petty squabbling amongst ourselves as we (and a good portion of the planet) banded together and stood in unity for peace. It was a nice side-effect to the carnage of that day. Every night the news was dedicated to what had happened, and while I believe that news is only news the first time it’s seen, I agreed with the continuing coverage. Like Novocaine, the numbness I was injected with was beginning to vanish as the events of 9/11 were re-played in an unending loop. They began to get harder and harder for me to watch. Finally I had enough. I walked into the bathroom and threw up. I also began sobbing; partially for the victims but more because I realized there was something very wrong with me.
I was immobilized.”Why hadn’t I reacted this way when it happened? Where is my humanity?” “Am I evil and selfish?” It took some reflection but I now know what was “wrong,” and as I move through the second half of my life, I seek to reinforce a crucial part of me that was missing. Sometime in the late eighties I came across an article debating the influence of violence in media aimed namely at television and movies. Video games weren’t realistic enough to be mentioned, but I’m sure they’d be included if it were written today. I read forth with a preset point-of-view. My opinion was that people know the difference between what is make-believe and reality, and honestly I still believe it’s true, but that wasn’t the focus of debate. The argument was this; if someone sees any act of brutality whether it’s real or not they will not react with the same revulsion that would normally surface once the actual event is witnessed. They become desensitized. What should obviously be an expected reaction becomes dulled and unsympathetic. I changed my mind once I had finished reading the piece, but I never changed my habits; I went on watching and being entertained by violence. By the time 9/11 occurred I was so detached from reality that my mind went to the only source of connection I had established, fantasy.
As time went on I slowly began changing. Most of the actions in my life since I’ve stopped my self-destructive behavior have been focused on creativity; writing, drawing, building, and learning have worked wonders as they drive me towards becoming a better man, but what I initially missed was improving upon a more productive and creative, reaction to life. When I magnified appreciation, acceptance, tolerance, and forgiveness I ended up manifesting a creative environment. My perspective on all which surrounded me was beginning to align with what I wanted for myself. I’ve done my best to drop the desire to compare the present with the past and this has helped me to better absorb the moment without as much prejudice. Taking on the roles of both participant and observer has shifted my perspective towards a more compassionate lifestyle, though I’m not nearly in a place I should be yet. Selfishness and self-centeredness still assert themselves frequently, especially in the form of not listening and interrupting. Impatience, judgment, procrastination, and a whole plethora of other unwanted personality traits are still in my bag of tricks. Fortunately, a lot of them are becoming rather dusty.
My “observer” is to the point now where simply I cannot watch the yearly replay of those horrific events from twelve and a half years ago. I’ve tried, and it’s just too much. Too much suffering, too many lives forever fractured by the losses of their loved ones. All the tomorrows gone forever, and all the memories that cannot be erased. For those wounded who survived, it must be like a splinter in the soul never to be removed; a constant reminder of what cannot be repaired or replaced.
Last year my wife and I visited ground zero. I fully expected to enter a space of restlessness and despondency. It was nothing of the sort, in fact it was one of the most spiritual places I’ve ever been; peaceful, beautiful, and inspiring. The museum on the grounds was not open yet, but we did attend another called “The Ground Zero Museum Workshop.” There are stories and photos here you probably have never heard or seen. It chronicles the event itself along with the aftermath in the weeks and months that followed. Here is a link- Ground Zero Museum Workshop. This tiny gallery (it’s literally one room) is also a holy place. I highly recommend it.
Those people who died that day paid with their lives to give us the gift of not only a more United States of America, but a more united world; one where we can look at each other and not just accept our differences, but ignore them completely. They say what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. Damn right.
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With Love and Compassion, Daniel Andrew Lockwood
on ” 9-11 ” , I was getting ready to take my then 15 year old Son to get his drivers permit. I had let him skip school and he was as giddy as a toddler at Christmas. The TV was on , the newscasters tone changed and plane 1 had already hit the tower, I watched , trying to understand what was happening. I honestly thought that the newscasters sounded surreal, as if this was something they were announcing about a new film that was out and they were showing a trailer from it. There wasn’t the alarm-tone I would expect if it were for real. Iv’e never watched horror or scary shows or even sci-fi, so I had no grid for sensationalism , and was brought up very strict when it came to television.. . . Then the second plane hit right before my eyes. I again said, this must be a TV movie, this cannot be real . After which eventually both towers collapsed, I went somewhere in my mind to recent documentaries I had seen on how to implode buildings in the inner city, How the charges must be set, thus and so. I immediately thought this must just be a building collapse project. Interesting how our mind protects us initially. I don’t blame myself for my reactions, they are there due to what I have taught them.
This day would change my life and others, forever. I could scarcely take it in.
I wanted to sit by the television all day and just mourn, watch and wait for something good, or even brace myself for the next blow. I just couldn’t do this to my Son. It was His Big day. It was also Our Birthday( born on the same day) . I was sure he didn’t want to sit and watch Mama cry and pour over the news all day. So, we went and we completed every plan we had made for the day. Now and then He would interject how afraid he was. I understood.
He got his permit, and we just drove. up high into the mountains, and we felt somehow safer there. We stopped and took an old time photo where you dress up in costume ( this is a tradition on our birthday for years. ) We were gunslingers, We looked the part. And to this day I see the Eerie look of anger, fear, sadness, even hatred in my eyes at what the terrorists have done to us. Our Birthday has never been the same. Many entire lives have never been the same. Some for better, some for worse. Thankful I know who my God is. He is with us ALL, no matter the trial.
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I read your post with great interest. I live in Wales which is part of the UK next to England . ( if you look on a map of the UK)
Anyway , I remember 9/11 very well. Like you I did not realise what was happening when the towers collapsed. I was working at a dental surgery. There was a tv on for the patients in the waiting room. I went in to call in a patient. All the patients looked shocked at the tv and I turned round to see what was happening I thought it was a demolition of some kind and didn’t think anything more about it. The patient told us what had happened in the surgery. I spent the rest of the day in shocked silence along with the rest of our patients.
Following along from that were the terrorist attacks in London and Paris and more to this day. Especially poinient for me was the attack a Manchester Arena at the Ariana Grande concert. 23 people died and 139 were injured more than half of them were children. Amongst those who died was an 8 year old little girl Saffie-Rose Roussos who became separated from her mother and sister. My granddaughter was 8 at the time. I cried for that poor little girl and her family.
These are terrible atrocities we have to bear and the awful suffering of the victims and their familys, makes us wake up to our humanity.
The fact that we have unity in this world against the evil of these people has made me realise that there are far more good than bad people in the world. We go about are daily lives in defiance they will not stop us . We are good people no matter what our religion our ethnicity our culture we will never ever give in to terrorism.
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I am a Muslim. I live in Australia. When 9/11 happened, a friend telephoned me and told me to turn on the TV. I was horrified and shocked to my very core. My eyes filled with tears when I saw brave firemen rushing up to rescue people and died in the attempt. When I heard these acts were committed by Muslims I was ashamed of being a Muslim. I tried to rationalise it by telling myself they were criminals and criminals have no religion. My nervous system was wrecked. Even after so many years I still cannot bring myself to watch a replay. These are my feelings after just watching the TV. I cannot imagine the extent of trauma experienced by those who were at the scene or those who lost loved ones.
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Your Love of humanity comes through well, I wish more people were focused on expressing empathy rather than defending belief. I actually have another confession to make, one that’s just as difficult to write about as my reaction to 9-11 was in the article above.
As much as I would LOVE to think I am beyond such reprehensible behavior, I had an ugly, unwanted Pavlovian reaction to those events. For some time after the towers fell, if I saw a person who I felt was “middle eastern” my first thought was “where’s the bomb?” I caught myself immediately and my intellect easily overrode this insane thinking, but this didn’t help with how I saw myself. I wanted to crawl out of my own skin I was so uncomfortable with the thought of expressing prejudice. I actually went out of my way to correct it, approaching people with brotherhood and oneness.
I imagine if this happened to me, it also happen to a great many others, and looking at this from the other side makes me weep. It truly brings a tear to my eye. All of the sudden, world wide, those Muslims who were living in peace were looked upon by strangers with scorn. It shakes my faith in mankind.
We can heal from this, we can come out stronger and more connected, but it’s going to take a long, good look in the mirror first.
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Thank you. I can identify with the feelings. I think, instead of hate mongering, building bridges is extremely important towards a peaceful coexistence. I was born in Pakistan but due to government sponsored extremist religious persecution I now live in Australia. About 15 years ago during an office Christmas party I was approached by an Australian pastor, perhaps, because I looked different. When he found out I was from Pakistan his immediate reaction was, “So you know how to build a bomb?” Instead of reacting, I smiled and said, “Well, I am a Physicist. I can only build a nuclear bomb”! That stopped him dead in his tracks from trying to be witty and insulting at the same time. Long time ago, at the funeral wake for an auntie of my Australian wife, I met another pastor. When he found out I was from Pakistan he said, “Oh you must be a Muslim.” He said he had worked in India for 20 years as a missionary. Then he said, “In India, I attended a few Muslim funerals. They are simple ceremonies but THERE IS NO HOPE IN IT.” I smiled and very gently said, “Yes, it is a matter of opinion.” He did not like my answer at all and got very hot under the collar (pun intended).
Beliefs (religious or not) are funny things but I feel if it makes one hostile towards others of a different belief then it is a sad thing. Hostility does not lead to inner or outer peace. Tolerance, acceptance and kindness do.
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I’ve looked to send you a friend request on Facebook BUT, there are several people in Australia with your name. I’m friends with only about 60 people, not interested in bragging rights about how many connections I have, I’m interested in surrounding myself with Love and those who are non-judgemental and peaceful, spiritual beliefs have no bearing to my choice of company. This is my home page link – https://www.facebook.com/daniel.lockwood.549
I am sorry! I am no more on Facebook. I tried it for a few years for extended family reasons but found it to be unproductive, frivolous, privacy invasive, and truly a waste most of the time. I have particularly become sceptical of how personal information is being used not just for marketing of goods (I am OK with the click> charge advertiser model) but how the analytical engines of Google, Facebook and Twitter can be misused by the powerful in persuading and hence creating a false majority opinion in political leanings and religious affiliation.
I don’t like it when the powerful (governments or corporations) LIE to stay in power, to make killing of “others” a non-event by ignoring it, and still manage to act morally arrogant.
I am a trained scientist and a believer. I believe in remaining in a state of permanent doubt about the so called “Expert Opinion”, be that scientific, political or religious.
I believe in “what works” just like the science experiments we conducted in high school. You start with an Objective (e.g. To measure specific heat density of something), Apparatus, Diagram, Method, Results, Graphs, Discussion and Conclusion.
I just don’t understand how people can go through their entire life without giving much thought to “how things work”. Isn’t that the most important aspect of living? “Things” mean anything. Gadgets, cars, computers, internet, politics, economics, environment, universe, health, religion, relationships, communication, business and commerce, industry, power, you name it.
What is the difference between someone who knows how to ride a bicycle and one who also knows how the bicycle works, where the nuts and bolts are, where to apply oil and where to apply grease and how, how to take it apart and reassemble it correctly and safely, how to straighten the wheels and how to use relevant tools.
The difference is multidimensional. Is that important to most of the people?
I am afraid that clever filters of social media can intentionally create false reality readily acceptable to a majority that have no idea that they are being manipulated for someone else’s benefit. For a simple person like myself, the only escape from that reality is to not subscribe to any of it. I realise I can change only a very small part of my world. I plant trees and bushes in my garden that help attract butterflies, bees, birds and native animals. I use rain water tanks. I have enough solar power panels to reduce my power bill to zero. I repair and recycle stuff. Beyond this small undertaking I really have no more interest or ambition in changing “others” or the world at large. Those who want to learn from me come to me but I can only teach what I understand, knowing very well all the time that I could be wrong.
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I am not on WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter except gmail. The exactly same reason you mentioned. If I get time, I spend reading, try QUORA , it is an social media with difference but use it with pinch of salt
To my shame, I developed a morbid curiosity (years ago) regarding all things 9/11. I would search for jumpers footage (& photos) and then watch through the gaps of my fingers (as l had been trying to stop myself from witnessing the graphic scene- even though I was the one who had searched for it! I would always regret watching the footage, & would be left feeling nauseated & deeply sad, for several days following. It almost felt like an obsession or an addiction. I often wondered if I was mentally impaired somehow.
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Sorry for the REALLY late reply… I DO want to hear from you…
I’m just a plumber with an interest in a layman’s knowledge of how humans are wired. My opinion is you were wondering where connections “missing” were within you, just as I was. I feel empathy is a skill, one that can be cultivated and subsequently put to productive use. Actually I think ALL emotions can be honed to razor sharpness. When they are unused (or at least rusty) and they’re triggered, we can have odd reactions, ones that are difficult to define, understand, and recognize. Choosing an empathetic attitude forces one to live devoid on both ends of the emotional spectrum. The desire to eradicate fear or sadness ALSO cuts off our ability to feel Love and joy. I should know, this strategy for living almost killed me some twenty-five years ago.
I hope these days you have peace and self-acceptance.
Hi … I found this post through Zemanta and clicked on it because I saw 9/11 and Ashamed in the same “sentence”. I have to say that when it happened I has a similar reaction. I was awakened and brought to the t.v. in our motel to see what was going on. With no warning, my first question was “What movie is this?”
The numbness and uncomprehending detachment seems to be more prevalent in the States than the guilt carrying citizens realize. I envy you. I reacted the opposite. Instead of searching for the feelings I thought should be there, I built a wall. I wondered where they were, (they eventually showed up), but television became my enemy, newspapers are now a thing of the past, and I get annoyed at people that try to tell me the bad news that they have seen or read. I feel the sorrow and pain of that day, but the immediate sting of any tragedy.
Great post! Thank you for sharing yourself so openly.
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Thank you kindly for your response! I suppose the voyage of self discovery can be rather harsh at times; but though the road may offer it’s share of pain and challenges, the trip is always worth the sacrifice. I’ve written a lot about such journeys, and my goal is to share (not preach) with others the advantages of taking such risks. With this knowledge in place, is there nowhere we can allow ourselves permission to go?
I don’t find anything offensive. The closest I would come to that attitude would be to say I might find something boring or uninteresting. In any case, I am always at least curious as to the viewpoints of others. What makes your observation scary about tragedy improving our nature is that if this is indeed true, then the opposite must also be true. When all is well and peaceful we will inevitably revert to the more barbaric state of animalistic nature, namely the four “f’s,” fight, flight, food, and procreation. Nothing says “let’s abandon the spiritual and embrace the material” like these pursuits do. The comfort level of these needs being met blinds us to the suffering of others and focuses everything on self. Hitler knew this all too well. Make the population comfortable and they won’t bother to disrupt or risk their own lifestyle by helping someone else. Sorry to digress here, but it’s a common and overwhelming problem throughout the world and those who know how to sidestep it’s influence (instinct over intent) I feel also have a moral obligation to show others how to do the same.
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I don’t believe “the opposite must also be true.” I do agree that, as you said, humans have animalistic instincts. However, because the human being is inherently imbued with a soul, I believe that the human being also has “spiritual instincts,” so to speak too. I believe this for all animals. If you research animals that “herd” or “swarm,” you’ll see fascinating instinctual behaviors that operate out of a 6th sense of their own. These behaviors are not JUST self-preservation, they’re behaviors intended “for the betterment of the whole,” not just “every being for themselves.” So, basically, I’m agreeing that animals can have less-than-appealing behaviors, but they they ALSO possess remarkably moral behaviors too… and that morality isn’t limited to the HUMAN experience!
I don’t necessarily believe that if you assert a claim as true, that by default, the opposite must also be true. That’s a logical fallacy. For example, all squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares. I agree that humans DO deal with issues of complacency or apathy. As you mentioned, if humans unite during tragedy, perhaps when things are going super well, their focus isn’t completely on unity. I can agree with that. We see humans becoming complacent again with the status quo, and then when the NEXT tragedy hits, you see the banding together again.
I guess what I’m suggesting is that it isn’t so much a BACKSLIDE that we’re seeing as just “another level,” or another layer of the onion. You see tragedy -> unity -> good times -> complacency -> apathy -> tragedy -> unity, over and over again. Still yet, it isn’t a BACKSLIDE, or else we’d be experiencing a repetition of archaic times over and over again. And that’s not what we’re experiencing. We’re experiencing a pattern… but the pattern ITSELF is actually improving and evolving. We used to think an ENTIRE GENDER of human wasn’t legitimate. Women were sub-men. Finally, they overcame that and accepted women as closer to equal. We used to not see an ENTIRE COLOR of skin as legitimate. Blacks weren’t human. Then they finally accepted blacks were human. Then, we used to not see an ENTIRE SEXUAL ORIENTATION as legitimate. Gays are imbalanced/possessed/whatever. Now, we’re seeing it as legitimate.
My point is, there are waves of PARALLEL issues, but there appears to be an improvement from an entire gender to just skin color, then to sexual orientation. I’m sure we’ll see another stratification variable (ie, religion, politics, socioeconomic status, etc) used against us as well…. in addition to the ones I already listed. I guess, I just feel that the days of the Dark Ages were much worse than today. So, even though we experience complacency in good times, I wouldn’t say that it’s a “backslide” or a reversal of humanity. It’s just another layer of the onion. Humans are born smiling, social creatures. It is LIFE that teaches us that there is difference and lack in the world. Otherwise, we would likely not operate under those presuppositions.
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I’m sticking with my opinion for now on the “opposite being true.” I would submit that the opposite statement that “all squares are rectangles” is “all circles are round; or perhaps curved.” I agree all rectangles are not squares, the definition being simply “four parallel sides that meet at 90° angles” AND the definition of round being “any area enclosed that has no angles or straight lines.” So….. not all “round” objects are circles either. Most of what we think of opposite is actually not; north/south, man/woman. heads/tails, black/white, and so on. We label things as such, but really one cannot exist without the other. This philosophy is at the very root of what I believe. I am open to examining other examples.
I will agree with your statement that examples of opposites that we use are in fact NOT opposites! It’s possible that I may end up agreeing with your statement of “the opposite must be true” after more introspection! I certainly can see how squares and rectangles might not actually be “opposites,” if you think about it in another way. I can believe that “up” and “down” are opposites, and the phrase, “what goes up, must come down,” DOES fit with your statement about opposites.
I think I know where my hang-up is….. because as I write, my thoughts are churning 100mph, haha! I think MY issue is that I actually have a “problem” with the word opposite in GENERAL. I see the world more in terms of DICHOTOMIES than opposites. If you look up the definition of those 2 words, you’ll see a “square vs rectangle” debate again. All opposites (“contrary or adverse”) ARE dichotomies, but not all dichotomies (“division into two pairs”) are opposites. I suppose I see this physical world in terms of “contrast,” or “to compare in order to show differences.” I see this 3D physical experience as our opportunity as soulful creators to tell the Universe more about itself. When we live this physical life, we are learning what we like and don’t like, and telling the Universe to create what is WANTED, and not what is unwanted. I think of the idea of wanted vs. unwanted, as a contrast. However, I don’t conceive of this contrast of wanted vs. unwanted as being OPPOSITE. I see it as being dichotomous.
For example, we can choose a pairing such as parenthood….. I can want to be a parent and NOT want to NOT be a parent. On the surface, parenthood vs. non-parenthood can look opposite. You can have kids or not have kids. But the “why” part of this debate is deeper than surface level, and is the crux of our decisionmaking. The “why” IS the true want vs. unwant. I want to be a parent, because I want to further my creation process. I don’t want to be a parent, because I highly value my sleep, haha. So here, what is wanted is creation, and what is unwanted is lack of sleep. Those are contrasting realities, dichotomous in nature, but not opposite in nature.
I think this is where I was having a mental disconnect from your statement that “the opposite must also be true.” Mentally, I am prone to over-analyzing. So, on the surface, when one thinks “opposite,” they may think yin-yang. While I believe in the concept of yin-yang, I view yin-yang as being more of the contrasting pair (“Yin and yang can be thought of as complementary (instead of opposing) forces interacting to form a dynamic system in which the whole is greater than the parts.”)…. like male vs. female. I don’t view yin-yang as “opposite.” But again, that’s more of me just over-analyzing an english word to death than really disagreeing with you.
If your comment “the opposite must also be true” is your english way of phrasing the yin-yang concept, then you and I are in agreement. Sorry for this highly tangential way of mentally maneuvering, hahaha. I’ve always been like this. I suppose it is both advantageous and disadvantageous!
Wow Daniel ! This paragraph is so thought provoking. Amen~Amen ! Let it be so, that we reach deeper inside ourselves to give out to others than to appease our own decisions of comfort. Many times, more than I am likely to rehearse; I have been face to face with lack of my intrinsic basic needs. And was appalled by the lackluster attitudes of those around me at the time.
So many instances I wish I could give you a glimpse into them all. From heartaches, to injustice, abuse, tragedy, homelessness, hunger, poverty and loss. I keep watch for the WHY to be heard. . .Yet, I am a Nurse. And with each wound I dress, pillow I tuck, smile I contrive to give, I understand how I attained- to give . Through the Pain comes the Glory, if you allow it. I often do wonder if I had had such luxury of Love and Kindness and Food and a Forever Home- How and What Type of Nurse I wold have become from it. I don’t want to know.
I have a completely different view of “why” 9/11 happened (and I’m sure you would find it highly offensive, which is why I won’t go into here… as it’s irrelevant to the point), but I definitely agree with your perspecive of what such traumatic events can do for people. It has been shown, time after time, in both anecdotal AND scientific observations of humanity…. that human behavior IMPROVES in the aftermath of things viewed as tragedy. Tragedy has a way of humbling people……… tearing away their facades…. making it impossible for them to delude themselves into believing the illusion of “separateness” and “difference.”
Sure, you’ll have the torch bearers that scream, “KILL THE ENEMY!! US VERSUS THEM!!” But more often, under that natural expression of anger that is experienced, you’ll see the unity and connection you mentioned. When people see things so horrific, their desire for peace is AMPLIFIED. You can’t TRULY know/desire peace without the contrast of war. Therefore, I choose to embrace “tragedies” for what they spiritually are – harbingers of desire and catalysts for improvement.
Also, you’re very right about desensitization. We’re bombarded with negative media so often that, to survive psychologically, one MUST disassociate! There’s no sense in beating yourself up for being someone who realized they were desensitized. It is arguable that 99% of human beings alive are desensitized!! Can you still watch the news? Can you still support the death penalty? Can you still support the punitive model of the justice system? Can you still support the conformist nature of the educational system? Can you still eat animals? Can you still kill “pests”? Can you still pull weeds? I know all of that sounds like “hippie nonsense,” but ultimately……. if you believe in the Universal Law Of Oneness, where you are comprised of the same energy which comprises a fish or flower….. then “killing” of ANY sort is a sensitive event! But…. we are desensitized, because we have to survive. If I didn’t eat animals, I’d still have to eat plants, and I don’t have the time or energy to find ONLY the apples that have ALREADY fallen off the tree, etc, etc, etc.
It is normal to be desensitized. It is not evil. It’s our self-preservation instinct. The wonderful part about you is that you notice instincts for what they are: a means to stay alive. Therefore, you’ve gained the awareness/insight to realize which of your “desensitized” beliefs you’re STILL holding onto that are NOT serving your life. You’ve got the awareness to see that you can CHOOSE to watch only the footage that makes you feel good, and not the footage that makes you feel bad. YOU’RE IN CONTROL. Therefore, you can re-sensitize yourself to human experience, while also remaining alive. 🙂
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