Very bad people have always been with us. In many mythological and religious traditions, hell is a place of judgment i.e. endless torture and punishment for bad conduct during life on earth. But these days, hell has got a big problem and, like the idea of evil, isn’t much talked about outside religious circles. Although … Continue reading What is the destiny of very bad people?
Who hasn’t responded with laughter to one of the most famous sketches in the history of British television comedy, the ‘Dead Parrot Sketch’ from Monty Python’s Flying Circus? Well, one person comes to mind. A rival political party had adopted the image of a bird for its logo. Margaret Thatcher’s speech writers encouraged … Continue reading Is all laughter healthy?
Nine-eleven was an act of cruelty as was the setting up of Guantanamo Bay torture centre. These recent acts of human cruelty are part of a long history of man’s inhumanity to man. The massacres, looting and capturing of slaves by forces led by Attila the Hun in 5th century eastern Europe; the unrestricted bombing of civilians living in cities like Gunernica during the Spanish civil war; the starvation, brutal treatment and extermination of Jews, and other victims of persecution in the Nazi concentration camps.
Human cruelty of course goes on all the time perhaps in less dramatic ways and in a much smaller scale than these. Malicious gossip can destroy a personal reputation; spiteful actions can result in huge distress; nasty comments within close relationships can cause longstanding wounds. Why do people feel so full of contempt, or want revenge to act out their feelings in such cruel ways?
I know who my enemy is: the individual who maliciously damages my property: tramps all over the flower-bed in the garden: scratches the car with a key: trashes the home during a burglary. I feel angered by anyone who threatens to harm my sense of well-being. These are the people I want to complain about and get my own back on. So how on earth does one stop hating such people. How do you love your enemy?