Archive for April, 2009
Every now and then I get into these philosophical modes. My friends and family seem to enjoy these moments so I thought I would share one with the world. If this goes well, I may include more of these.
I enjoy art – mostly painting of the past. So much emotion is swept in by the brush of the Masters that sometimes our own emotions can be stirred. I saw a wonderful painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder called the Triumph of Death (c. 1562). The painting depicts 16th Century Europe – but things havenâ€™t really changed much, have they.
Our modern society has embraced this final state of life that sometimes I think we have no idea what it really means. I have a special insight on this in that I was a soldier. I wasnâ€™t in Bosnia or the Gulf or Afghanistan, I was in one of the small ones that no one can talk about. I wonâ€™t divulge the date or time this happened other than it was at night. Our group was fired upon and I fired back. As quickly as it started the exchanged ceased. The morning search revealed the body of a soldier – not ours of course! It can be argued that I was responsible for his death.
The mission was such that these sorts of engagements could happen. So I did my job and defended those with me, I just happened to fire first. I looked at the body and thought to myself â€œwere is the honor?â€ All I see is a smelly pile of sweat, blood and shit. The remnant of a job well done.
The evening news is filled with death, be it war or gang violence. When will it ever end? Sure the idea of peace is extremely naive as there will always be the one thirsting for power. But that aside, I wonder when there will be peace among our young?
All I ask is that we look at each other as a person. We all have a mother and father, or some family member that loves us – be it an aunt or uncle, grandparents, brothers and sisters. Some out there have a spouse or a significant other, or even children. I still feel guilt over the firefight because that soldier had a mother and father. Perhaps his wife was waiting for his return, a return that will never happen.
Death affects so much more than the people involved. We just have to think past the moment. Be it war, revenge or violence, think of the Triumph of Death and see what I see – the loss of life of not just a person, but a family, a lineage, history.
We can change things. Revenge only ends more life and becomes a continuous loop. Justice and violence are their own double-edged sword. The young must understand death and respect life. Parents must love and respect their children – they must come first.
The solution is simple, and we must begin today!
After three weeks of agony, I am happy to say my dad has survived the surgery and is now home recovering. They found the problem with the rapid heart beat and apparently cut the nerves responsible. They also replaced the old pacemaker with a new model that does everything. It even has a built-in defibulator so that if his heart stope, the unit will shock it back to life – I hope!
Now I can go back to worring about other things, like how in the hell I am to pay my $16,170 tax bill for 2008! I will galdy accept any cash help!! Too bad no one owes me money.