I blame my metta practice for how easily and frequently I cry.
As I watched Anderson Cooper tonight interviewing victims of the Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting, I noticed that I had stopped breathing.
I recognize (too well) the look of shock and horror in the witnesses eyes
—I know, from experience, that their lives may never be the same. A trust has been broken.
While there is no written contract stating that our life lives will never be touched by violence, we certainly never expect to be minding our own business, in the
safety of our home (or a movie theater) and then be ambushed by someone with a gun.
It happened to me over 30 years ago.
And there are still reverberations.
I was at a friend’s house and two men burst into the home, threatening to shoot us.
They did other things.
My body still holds the memories and the event still occasionally revisits me in my dreams. This, even after years of psychological and spiritual work. I feel fortunate to have therapists and teachers who have helped me turn that shitty situation into the manure in which to grow my compassion.
Through the tears, there is also anger and outrage. But, oddly, it’s not directed at the shooter. I don’t feel pity for him, yet I know it takes a very sick, deluded person to do what he did.
No, my anger is at the NRA and its supporters who think it’s okay to legally sell assault rifles to the general public and who have fought tooth and nail for people to be able to buy as many guns and as much ammunition as they please.
No red flags were raised about this guy and his recent weapon buying spree. It was all legal.
And it makes me sick. And I want to get on a soapbox and blame some “other” for allowing this.
But, it will do no good. I can already read online the gun control debates—everyone spouting “I’m right, you’re wrong” with too little true dialogue.
Tonight, as I was doing my metta practice I did a round for everyone affected by the events today in Aurora.
And while I
wish them happiness and peace, health and strength and ease of well-being…I wish, with all my heart, that one day they may once again feel safe and protected.
It may take some work, but I want to hold them close and tell them that it is possible.
Editor: Bryonie Wise
Like I’m not “spiritual” I just practice being a good person on Facebook.
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