To watch the news is to watch history in the making, to learn what the books will never actually teach. Some may think the constant fixation on tragedy marks our desire to draw pleasure from another’s pain, but our obsessions are nothing more than curiosity. Most do not wish to see their fellow humans suffer. We simply long to make sense out of the horrors that consistently grace our screens.
Ever since the earthquake and tsunami altered Japanese lives forever, one cannot turn on the television or browse the Internet without images, articles and live footage staring back at them from all angles. Yet we do not point and laugh, sitting idly by to brag about our good fortune. Instead, we gather whatever aid we can provide, even if only just a few pennies found between the couch cushions, and we forego our economic woes to help those whose homes, loved ones and livelihoods were washed away by the unforgiving ocean. We come together and lend humanity a hand because our cruel world can still ignite that occasional spark of warmth and compassion.
Every major television network continues to provide extensive coverage, while key news outlets continuously update their homepages and social media accounts in an effort to keep the public up-to-date and aware. Natural disasters baffle, so we watch the footage incessantly just in case a secret lies within that may unlock the key to controlling such phenomena. But as of right now, we all cling to the unknown, bound by the fact that we will all inevitably die.
You see, most believe in some sort of higher power. The “something greater” accounts for all those instances that life and science just cannot control or explain. Humans have yet to determine what everything means, so we latch onto something intangible in hope that there really is more to our journey than life and death.
Religion holds so much power, in fact, that many die in its defense. We ignore the fact that many believe in said higher power, and fight over the intricacies. We disregard the fundamental similarity and kill over the differences. We neglect the fact that we are all part of one whole and focus our attention on eliminating anyone whose theories contradict or differ from our own. We are complete fools who insist we know what’s correct, when we all know, deep down, that defending our specific beliefs simply makes us feel as if we have a better grip on reality.
Instead, find solace in the fact that you don’t know the truth, for no one does, and embrace the differences by remembering that we are not alone in our search for understanding. Help the hurt and save the suffering – do anything you can to ease other’s burdens and lighten their loads. We may not know if there are truly angels up in Heaven, or if Heaven even exist, but we can certainly spread a sense of peace and hope within our world today.