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Stand By Me

There has been some activity about a YouTube video that was recently posted showing the murder of a Mideastern woman named Najibia.  I haven’t seen the clip – my cowardice and horror renders me incapable of watching it.  That said, I have been told that it reveals members of the Taliban cheering and supporting her husband as he repeatedly shot her in the back of the head.  His reason?  Her ‘crime’?  There are no reasons one can conceive of;  there was no crime, for there was no mention of a trial.  To carry my sorrow one step farther, this murder was committed in the name of a religion.  It’s important to note up front that this isn’t a diatribe about the Taliban, one specific culture, etc.  It is about the reiterative chorus in the face of unspeakable acts as justifiable by religious belief.

I’m not sufficiently well-versed to write about religion.  My spiritual view is both simplistic and I’m sure there are those who feel I am wrong.  I know of no religion that isn’t predicated on love, grace and humanity.  I am not suggesting that there isn’t significant brutality in religious and global history – though each example underscores a lesson that we were intended to learn and can’t seem to permanently absorb.  We keep repeating ourselves.  Whether acts of cruelty are defined as acceptable by gender, sect, interpretation – we watch as people continue to be brutally killed, forced to act against their will, hearts mutilated by memories.

I don’t have answers – I can feel inadequate in my corner of the world, consciously ensuring that I walk gently on this earth and embrace love as a spiritual expectation that I honor.  And I know it isn’t enough.  I have to consider ways to do more.  And I have to remember that without hope, there’d be no miracle of another sunrise and another opportunity.

You may remember this video as part of a documentary “Playing For Change – Peace Through Music”.  It lifts us up to look in the mirror and see the best reflection of ourselves, it underscores that we are all composing this song as we go along.  And though we may not read from the same notes, love is as universal as ignorance.  And there perhaps is where God resides – in the longings of our heart.