Time for introspection | AspenTimes.com

Time for introspection

Dear Editor:Yesterday I read an e-mail which stated we were targeted by the terrorists because they envy our position, our success, and our freedoms. Is this really why they are after us?But what about: our country’s imperialist nature – meddling in and controlling other nation’s affairs (example: Venezuela. The U.S. government is using our tax dollars to fund the opposition party to President Hugo Chavez because Chavez does not agree with or support U.S. policy); our thirst for oil and our need to control nations that supply oil; the belief that our democratic way is “the way”; the spreading of our ideological, consumptive and materialistic ways across the planet; our financial and militaristic support of Israel and the Israeli Palestinian conflict. Add to the above, the shame and impotence felt by many in the Middle East resulting from losing war after war to Israel and the United States.Could it be that we created this situation? Are we experiencing the karma of our past and present deeds? Like when we discovered America and killed off the Native Americans, wolves and buffalo? Or when we enslaved Africans for work in the cotton fields? Presently, we lead the world in the consumption of the planet’s natural resources and environmental pollution. The US has 4 percent of the world’s population yet we consume 25 percent of the resources. Why do we turn a blind eye to the tragedies of AIDS, starvation and genocide in Africa? Is it because there is no oil there?Can we remedy our current conflict with more bombs and external power? Will Iran be next? As with any major imbalance within a person, family, or nation, it’s an inside job. We need to look within ourselves for the root of the problem. We need to address our personal and national issues of consumption, control and greed and their effect on other nations and the natural world. We need to go beneath control and greed, beneath ego and confront our fear and anger. Only then can we transform the imbalance of our present situation and ultimately co-create a world from a deeper sense of truth, connection and peace. The Arab nations are part of the global family, we are one humanity. Wouldn’t it be better to find out why our brothers and sisters are acting out instead of controlling, jailing and killing them? What will happen to the generations of Arabs that follow in the wake of this violence? Take a trip to Vietnam to see the level of anger and violence that remains there today because of the abuse they experienced during the Vietnam War. Envy of our position, success and freedom? Do people commit suicide and blow others up because they are envious? What might happen if instead of spending $200 billion-plus for the war in Iraq, we used the money for goodwill programs across the planet? What if we used our position in the world to benefit others? “Oh what a wonderful world it would be.”Branden CohenLenado

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