Fear in its Many Faces

Fear – Image courtesy of Pexels

In my younger years, it seemed the 1950’s when people began to build atomic bomb fallout shelters in their backyards, but apparently it was in the early 60’s and Kennedy was one of the people advising people in the U.S. to take precautions against an atomic bomb or equally devastating event. It quickly spread into other countries, and even Switzerland, known to be primarily neutral through everything, began to tell their people to build.

I so remember how people were so paranoid about their own neighbors and the possibility that if THEY did not have a bomb shelter, the neighbors might want to take refuge with their families in any existing ones. About the same time (and again, this is likely my poor memory thru 78 years of living), suddenly there was paranoia about people in the U.S. being Communists. The entertainment industry was under great suspicion, and many famous entertainers were suffering “under the gun.” I don’t believe anything came from any of it except to further harass and control human beings because of total paranoia about a potential belief that there was an existing threat.

I saw a little column today listing everything that has caused massive fear/paranoia over the entire globe each and every year. Isn’t it incredible that so many people live their lives in such fear? Is it our nature as human beings, or have we all been brainwashed over the centuries? Remember the Y2K scare that all the computers were going to fail? Many churches were preparing to take in hundreds, perhaps thousands of new members as the year approached. Some were giving all their money to churches in hopes of perhaps staving off the horrors.

The same thing is happening once again as people are rushing to the stores in utter panic over the so-called Corona Virus to buy supplies like bottled water and toilet paper to the point where they have depleted some stores’ supplies. Have people died? Certainly. People die every year even from common viruses. They die because their health is not great to begin with, or they are particularly susceptible in some other way, and this is true of every single virus (and there has been one almost every single year) that comes along.

As Churchill once said, “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” Who are the true beneficiaries each year from these fear seasons? I venture to say that next year this fear of Corona Virus will be a fear of something else.

As for me, I have lived through every single horror a person can live through, and here I am still standing at 78. Thank you one and all. Make your days and years count. Don’t live in fear. When it is your time to leave this plane, you will, regardless of your age, gender, overall health, etc. Live life productively as we are meant to do. Study, learn, create, serve others. You will see how good life really is and what magnificent creatures we are.

What Shall We Celebrate?

Lady Liberty, Symbol of Strength, Peace, and Freedom. Courtesy Pexels.

As most of us prepare for the Fourth of July, with its fireworks, barbecues and picnics, vacations, and joyful gatherings with friends and loved ones, perhaps we should take a few moments to set forth some prayers for those who have not yet fully gained or even partially gained their freedom throughout the world.

Frederick Douglass had it right when he delivered a famous speech on July 5, 1852, in Corinthian Hall, Rochester, New York, addressing the Rochester Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Society. The speech, “What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?” In the speech, he brought out the contradictions to a celebration of liberty, citizenship, and freedom as an offense to the black slaves, who had none of those things. The Fourth of July was supposed to be directed to ALL citizens of the United States.

Frederick Douglass, courtesy Wikipedia.

The times have changed, but the inequality has grown out of proportion. Today, as we prepare for the Fourth of July, let us offer a prayer for those living under modern slavery, which encompasses more than some nearly 30,000,000,000 enslaved people (as of 2013) – adults, children and babies alike – no longer black slaves alone, but all colors, races, political, religious or spiritual or other beliefs – in every manner of slavery imaginable. The highest number of enslaved people is in Asia, but the United States has a huge number as well. No matter where these human beings are located or how many of them there are, we cannot blindly celebrate without remembering those who are not as fortunate as we are.

“Oh Lord, thank you for this freedom that you have bestowed upon me and those I love. I know how precious it is when I see how many people in this world are suffering every day because they have no hope. I have difficulty understanding this inequality, and I honestly don’t know what I can do to help except to offer this small and perhaps inadequate prayer. But what my soul cries out is WHY? Why must innocent people suffer in this manner when you have provided enough for all of us? I have no answers, Lord. I want to believe that there is some power in this world that is good and that can nourish and care for people who have done nothing to deserve what they are suffering. Thank you.”