Sunday, July 15, 2007


Words of advice... from Yoda.

Fear is the path to the dark side.
Fear leads to anger...
Anger leads to hate...
Hate leads to suffering!

A little boy, afraid of losing his mother, turned into the worst villain in the Galaxy, many years after the Jedi Council told him to "mind his feelings." I think being mindful of feelings means be aware of them, what they are, but control them, instead of letting them control you. In the end, it turns out he's afraid of losing his wife in childbirth, and from that fear he grows angry at people for not helping him avoid it, then he begins to hate them, even hate her almost for not doing what he says, and that hate is then manipulated to cause, yes, a tremendous amount of suffering. Deaths of children, to start with, but then the destruction of entire planets. And in the end? She dies in childbirth, because of his anger and hatred which blinded him from being able to help her. What reconciliation is there after that?

Fear leads to anger. The fear of one group of people against their oppressors, and eventually distrusting all others. They grow angry and build themselves up, prepare for their defense relying on the passion an adrenaline which fuels them in their schemes. Then they begin to hate those around them, despising them and their way of life, dehumanizing them even, and then they oppress them, they cause others to suffer. We call that the occupied territories, aka Palestine.

What is the state of the believer? Between hope and fear, yes? So is the state of the unbeliever I think. But while the unbeliever hopes for dunya and fears death, the believer hopes to meet Allah with a good record and fears to earn Allah's displeasure. Between hope and fear is important. Too much hope makes a person neglect his duties, and the rights of others. Too much fear leaves him in anger or despair, without reason to pursue a path of righteousness. So it can lead to anger, hate, and suffering, in essence injustice. Just a thought.

Right now my voice is very scratchy (and since like an idiot I forgot to buy more tylenol at the store--hello? why did I even go?--and now they're closed, and I can't have any more meds until tomorrow) and I keep coughing, but such a rough voice makes for interesting listening--for me anyway. My vocal range is totally different, and I've enjoyed singing (although, before long it does get painful) some songs from a new CD I have.

Here are the lyrics to one:

I knew a man who lived in fear
It was huge, it was angry it was drawing near
Behind his house a secret place
Was the shadow of a demon he could never face
He built a wall of steel and flame
And men with guns to keep it tame
And standing back, he made it plain
That the nightmare would never ever rise again
But the fear and the fire and the guns remain

It doesn't matter now,
It's over anyhow
He tells the world that it's sleeping
But when the night came 'round,
I heard it's lonely sound
It wasn't roaring it was weeping

And then one day the neighbors came
They were curious to know about the smoke and flame
They stood around outside the wall
But of course there was nothing to be heard at all
"My friends," he said, "We've reached our goal
The threat is under firm control
As long as peace and order reign
I'll be damned if I can see a reason to explain
Why the fear and the fire and the guns remain."

It doesn't matter now,
It's over anyhow
He tells the world that it's sleeping
But as the night came 'round
I heard its lonely sound
It wasn't roaring it was weeping.

It wasn't roaring it was weeping.

(This was done by a South African musician some years back, and might have originally been a poem but I'm not sure.)

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