A Lesson on Anger and Fear

As I scroll through social media I see how so many people are eager for retaliation in the Paris attacks. We were harmed, we say, so others must be harmed. What we do not understand is that terror does not eliminate terror. Anger is a normal stage of grieving. When decisions are based on anger the relationships between friends and even countries can become irreparable. Fear breeds anger, anger breeds hate. If we use terror as a weapon are we no better than the terrorists?

For over twenty years, our family has hosted an International Dinner. Our friends are required to bring a dish of food from their country. We are able to share a meal with a multitude of people whose origins trace the far corners of the world. As one sits with another from a different country an amazing realization happens. Other than our slight skin color variances, we realize we are remarkably the same. In fact, each person may have the exact same dreams, hopes, fears, ambitions, and even humor as another. It is also remarkable how something as simple as conversing and sharing food can make one realize we are all created from the same mother, which is our earth.

Our world has produced so many humans that have left our planet better than they found it. It also appears that we may always be plagued with isolated lunatics that have not yet learned how to love, or have practiced compassion or understanding. These humans tarnish the noble qualities of our individual heritages. We should never condemn anyone because of their appearance, attire, or language. It is also a horrible mistake to judge our neighbor or anyone in our own country because he or she shares the same religion or race as another who has terrorized us.

Therefore, I ask everyone to take a deep breath and first realize the source of our anger. Let us first use our capacity of understanding. When we face fear in the eyes, the fear goes away.

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