Throughout history human beings have been fighting, maiming and killing each other. If you wish to think about an ethical response to violence then the Viking invasion of Britain over 1000 years ago is as relevant a period in history as any for consideration. For their story is one of pillage and slaughter, destruction and … Continue reading Violence: How to respond to it ethically?
Many people have been shocked, frightened and angry at the breakdown of law and order that has caused great damage in some of the larger cities across England; violence against unarmed police, arson and destructive behaviour together with widespread looting and mugging which terrorised shopkeepers and residents. A lot of those going on the rampage were teenagers. How has this happened? How do we make any sense of these disgraceful scenes that have brought shame on a nation?
Have you been hopping mad recently? Some people temperamentally seem to be more easily roused to anger than are others. Yet, to some extent we all get irritated at times. We feel cross when others attack what we love like our child or pet animal for instance.
It could be something we love in ourselves, that when attacked, causes us a sense of wounded pride. We may experience `road rage’ in our heart, reasoning defensively in our head about it being the other driver’s entire fault.
We might then use our hands to make rude gestures or write letters making unreasonable demands. Offensive putdowns thrown at us in a condescending tone of voice also can get to us. Then irritation easily spirals when we retaliate in kind and the heated things that are said – which on reflection we often do not even mean – hurt both parties. It is possible to harbour resentment for years especially if we continually avoid someone or allow ourselves to slip into the habit of not conversing with them when we do have an opportunity.
Spiritual healing may be a relevant way forward. However making up may be easier said than done. In addition, not every attempt at reconciliation works. After all, it takes two to tango. We need to eat a little humble pie even if the other person does not. The trouble is as …..