Wednesday, January 9, 2013

My heart is broken

Sometimes I run across an old blog and it just blows me away - and cries out to be said again.  This is one:

It was on Saturday evening that I realized my heart was broken. Sounds like the first line of a novel.  It would be so easy to make this post fiction.  Instead of face the reality.  One so stark I’m not even sure as I write this where this post is going.

My heart is broken because there’s never going to be even the slightest inquiry into the “torture” – a depravity called by so many euphemisms, instead of its truthful name.  But even worse my heart is broken by the centuries and the thousands of centuries of equal inhumanity to man.  The punishment of so many innocents.  The going to war and justification of killing and torture and rape and pillage by so-called “virtues” as if using words could ever make this ok.  My heart is breaking, not just because of these particular tortures and wars, but also because I can look into myself and see the same potentials, the same anger, the same kinds of justifications within my own torn and divided heart.

My heart is broken because we’re never really going to get health care like we really need health care.   Health care for all – where the money goes for “care” and not for corporate welfare.  But even worse my broken heart cries out for the fact of ill health itself.  For sickness and disability and dying alone or unloved or on battlefields or other places of carnage, so different from medical settings where lives are valued to such extremes that the unwell are inflicted with “treatments” that make them suffer all the more.  It’s the pain of life leading to death and the path along that strewn with illness and suffering.  And the inability to ultimately alleviate these truths from my mind.

My heart is broken because national ideals and religious ideals are too often just words and pageantry.  Because greed is so rampant.  And because people have figured out ever better ways to disguise that and package products, even ideals, and sell them.  For riches.  For power.  And I can see those same pulls contending within my own heart – so I can’t cast stones or I’d have to cast them at myself.

I’m trying to rise above all this.  I think of the Buddha, raised in a comfortable palace, protected from all by enjoyment, ultimately shocked when he ventured out and saw sickness and death and suffering.  It wasn’t that he didn’t care to try and alleviate them.  But he saw them as the human condition and he set out to try and find release from the fears and the wishes that prompt our inner suffering, as well as from the negative feelings like anger or resentment or revenge which ravage the world around us when they are unleashed by you or me or those we oppose.  And then to save all beings through sharing  that realization.

Jesus was murdered for trying to get people to care about each other.  I think of him now as the Man of the Broken Heart, the Man of Sorrows so many have called him.  A man who died for Love.  And I take comfort in sharing that Broken Heart.

There’s a line from one of the psalms that says “a heart broken and crushed, oh, God you will not spurn.”  I guess I’ve arrived there.  Andre Louf calls that a place of true humility.  A place where you admit your total powerlessness.  Your brokenness.  Failed ideals.  Failed efforts to live up to them yourself.  A place where you look around at the rubble of what you’ve tried to do and failed to do.   How all of us fail.

So I’m not looking for sympathy.  I hope you understand that.  There are no words of comfort that have not been said before.  For the Man of Sorrows, the Man of the Broken Heart, even the Buddha, they’ve been there too.  And the psalmist, the psalmist has been there.  A condition of complete simplicity (Costing not less than everything) as TS Eliot describes it.  Followed by the comforting words of Julian of Norwich that “all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well” – but that is on a spiritual plane:  When the tongues of flame are infolded / Into the crowned knot of fire / And the fire and the rose are one. (whatever that means… it can’t be easy!)

Oh, yes, stilli… I know your sense of alienation…


butterfly said...

Part I - Thank you TheraP. I've a broken heart too, for the same reasons. I'm not looking for sympathy either. Just a kind heart who sees what is going on and we can hear each other clearly. Sorry I did not see this back in January. Nevertheless, here I am with a quick note, as I have had a long day and need to rest soon. If my sentences are a little choppy, it's because I'm tired.

Having an overview of history with its repetitions of certain forces, the same types over and over again, lording it over everyone and drawing people to war with one another, lets us see the immediate dangers and signs present in our time now. In the light of knowing some history and the grace of love that is divine with you, we can see the colors of these forces and some are very dark with no light and they do have the same characteristics.

I think of Ben Salmon in WWI who was a conscientious objector for religious reasons and know he was tortured and died an early death from the brutal way he was treated after he was allowed to leave prison . And what was his imprisonment for? For following his own conscience, a religious one to boot. Didn't matter to those who imprisoned him by their high and mighty "morals" or nationalistic version of religion which took the place of real religion and spiritual truth. They were going to "teach him a lesson." Those with no wisdom at all teach their meanness to the masses and create fear.

butterfly said...

Part II - I think of the medical care in the US and it is really not ready to deal with a lot of baby-boomers who are becoming old rather quickly. There is tremendous pressure on us, as well there is much stress even among those in their twenties and early thirties who can't find work and they still have student loans to pay off. There really should be a debt moratorium or there should be something to help them, such as work with a living wage so they can live on their own and maybe have a family. Even our college educated are losing jobs. It's just about a total loss economically for probably a quarter of the population, and that is a guess of a number for the US. I don't know what the numbers are for the rest of the world, and I get the feeling it could be worse elsewhere. And we are losing our credibility as a "strong" nation by the policies of congressional deadlock and also by the back room deals we don't hear about. The rule I hear for unemployed amounts is to double the amount they give for those who are officially collecting unemployment, and that is the number of people that are really total unemployed.

Regarding health care again, it could be it will just be too expensive to have much care at all, which is a tragedy of huge proportions, and speaks reams about a country that fought for "independence" from tyranny, that would deny health care for all The People while businesses profit. In this case, a tyranny of no care for those in need. It is heartbreaking.

Feels like I have a broken wing at times & can not fly so free, because I have to stop the creative projects to examine what is going on politically, be aware of these things & any developments or causes with petitions and such, and help to serve in the way that God desires for me to respond. And I do feel so helpless at times, for I see the many dangers and the harm inflicted by words first and then by the flesh. And we see this throughout history. It is the old divide and conquer schemes that go into repeat mode.

There are little steps of progress being made here and there and more people speaking out about the issues. So that is very positive. I am truly praying for a miracle. I guess our voices must get louder, and in positive ways.

The only way I can get through this time is with the Lord. He'll show us the way. And, in each time in history there were beautiful people too, who made beautiful music, wrote wonderful and inspiring books and poetry, and so many who do really care. They stand out like beacons of light and hope and they too suffered in difficult times.

Bless you TheraP. :-)

TheraP said...

Dear butterfly,

It's a miracle I checked this email account on the very day you posted! The Holy Spirit at work...

Thanks for your comments. I'm glad you had the opportunity to write down all the heartache. Yes, there is just so much to grieve in this world. And it's such a joy when good news comes through the cracks, isn't it?

Bless you as well, butterfly!