Japan and Libya

The events related to the Libyan uprising and the earthquake off the coast of Japan: I feel as though I can't just let two major catastrophes pass by without acknowledgement, even though I have little, if anything, to add.

First off, the cruelty of men, the occasionally manifested power of nature, and the repercussions of technology gone awry are all astounding.  No matter how far we advance as a global society, we never seem to escape these things.  And yet an individual can live without any knowledge of events similar to these by simply turning off the news and living in an area sufficiently isolated and protected.

I'll admit that I didn't read the news at all the day of the earthquake--sometimes I just feel the urge to disconnect.  N came home and said, "Please tell me you read the news today."  But even when I am thorough in reading my favored sources, there is so much information that even these great tragedies seem so remote.  Suffering is universal and far too frequent.  I feel helpless.  A thought will pass through my mind: why bother to stay informed if I will never know everything and there isn't much I can do about what I do know?  The sorrow everything brings is terrible.

But humanity is worth it; I have to remain connected to family, friends, and strangers alike.  I have to have knowledge and be a part of this world, an active and aware participant.  It can inflict all kinds of emotions and personal change, but our inseverable connections to each other are part of what makes us human.

So though I spend my time doing tasks that are so simple they seem silly sometimes, my heart goes out to those suffering everywhere, form Japan and Libya to places that I can't pronounce and know nothing about.  However, this heart isn't big enough to cover everyone.  Nor is my bank account.  And my hands aren't strong enough to do all the needed work, even if they were in the right places.  So I can only care and hope and do the best I can with what I have, trusting that we'll manage to take care of each other somehow.

I suppose it's a big leap of faith, but it's the only way I can keep moving.

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