Anonymity breeds apathy

The world is in turmoil right now, some parts more than others.

In France, the wounds are raw and wide open; in the UK the wounds have scabbed over but are still tender and red around the edges.

In Syria, canon fire is taking off limbs – with no one to help staunch the bleeding.

globeHere in the United States we have scars that are more of a reminder of pain than source of immediate pain.

But we are understandably still pretty gun shy.

Each country has its own personal pain.

And fears.

Rightly so.

In the madness that is extremism, it only takes one to carry out terrorist acts – leaving a bloody trail of what were, to him, nameless strangers who were guilty for no other reason than they were there.

We are repulsed at the callousness and insanity of it all.

depression5For someone to act in such a way, they surely must be beyond feeling.

Numb.

What causes someone to become that way?

Certainly one way is when someone else treats them as nothing, ingrains within that they are expendable, and in the end promises empty rewards that will never come.

That’s the real enemy isn’t it?

We are at war with what takes an individual past feeling and into numbness, the one who fights to make everyone anonymous.

But we aren’t.

We aren’t anonymous at all.

And we aren’t numb.

Unless we choose to be.

One of the antonyms I found to anonymous is named.

I kind of think that says it all, doesn’t it?

sacrament2We are known by name – by our own personal eternal identity.

Add to that, we have also chosen to take Another’s name upon ourselves.

That’s about as far away from anonymous as we can get.

When we truly begin to understand the significance of these names by which we are called, we come to see others in their own personal eternal identity.

And then to feel with them.

Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life—

To be numbered in this case means that we are each known and loved by name.

Yes, it only takes one to carry out these horrific acts of terror, trying to destroy as many random lives as possible.

But in the reality that is the love of God, it only takes one to carry out charitable acts – gathering those around him as cherished friends and neighbors, trying to lift and enhance as many lives as possible.

diversityWhich one will each of us choose to be?

You know, by reaching out in love to someone else and getting to know them by name, we may be just in time to stop them from becoming the one who feels anonymous.

And instead, become one who feels.

 

 

 

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