Strange thing about the male of the species - we can endure a lot of physical pain but sure don't handle colds and flu with the same sangfroid!
I had promised in the last posting to say why fire, salt and light but that will wait for a few days more as the recent horror in London is on my heart today - for as a man I have to confront my own emotional reaction when terror strikes - the common human desire to react swiftly, effectively, definitively - yep, that's why war, violence and hatreds at the root of same are so difficult to eradicate.
Gandhi confronted his own capacity for such things and went through much struggle, reflection, purification before taking the non-violent path and inspiring, among countless others, Dr. Martin Luther King.
As a baptized and ordained man however I cannot simply voice non-violence nor be so niave as to believe it is possible, presently, to dispense entirely with armed police or the military for that matter - what I must do is look first into my own heart: is it a place of peace, mercy, forgiveness, truth?
People, and rightly so, admire Pope John Paul for going and forgiving the man who tried to kill him - but we need also to remember the example of truth, truth expressed through a respect for the process of justice - yes the Pope forgave him but he also left him in jail!
Until Christians, Jews, Muslims forgive each other for what we have done in the name of the very same God we believe in and until all peoples of all races and religions forgive one another for what we have done to each other and strive to work together for truth, peace and justice - well this priest and I guess many other people will have to struggle to go deep enough into our own hearts to confront what lurks there - high emotions in face of the horror of cowards who kill but until I defuse my own heart it is unlikely terrorists will defuse their bombs either.