Last night our discussion centred around the 10 year anniversary of the terrorist attacks in America which have become known as 9/11. Our questions aimed to raise issues such as why should we remember? And should remembrance have ties to faith and religion?Here is the list of questions we started with…
1. Where were you when you heard the story break? Is there any point in remembering 9/11?
2. Are remembrance services worthwhile / a good thing ? Should they be conducted as a “religious” ceremony?
3. How long should we go on remembering? Shouldn’t we just forgive and forget / move on.
4. Has the retaliative violence left the world a safer or more unstable place? What can we learn about this for our own lives?
5. Can acts like this be forgiven? After talking about these questions we got on to the statistics about the loss of life in Afghanistan and Iraq since (Iraq war: 118,000 dead Afghanistan war : 37,455 dead
plus 38,000 Taliban dead or captured.) Personally I cannot help feeling that the retaliation of the USA has caused more harm than good. I believe in the short term that what they have done has made America safer, but in the long term it has unstabilised many nations for many, many years to come. So is it ever right to retaliate with violence? I don’t think so, but that is not to say that something should not be done. I believe that there are times when action must be taken, but that action can be one that bring peace and reconciliation. That action also means that the person who has been wronged needs to have imagination and creativity in sometimes very hostile situations. I have been reading about the work of a guy named Shane Claiborne (@ShaneClaiborne) he set up a conference called ‘Jesus, bombs and Ice Cream’ you can read more about it here. The idea came from a guy who was working in a hospital in Iraq during the allied bombing campaign ‘shock and awe’. As the casualties where being brought in one doctor cried out loud, “When did our world loose it’s imagination!” Imagination costs…. It is something that we all have, that we all need, and to which we all must pursue if we are ever going to see peace…. and when i say peace i mean in our own lives and relationships as well as international connections. Grace and Peace Ben 12.9.11