Hypocrisy thy name is the UN Security Council.

Last Friday the Council voted unanimously for a thirty-day cease-fire in Syria and the lifting of sieges.

Syrian Asad forces backed by Russian bombs have been killing civilians in rebel-held territory. Tens of thousands may have been killed or maimed in war-ravaged enclaves.

The United States backs the rebels with its firepower.

The United States is the number one supplier of weapons to the world. Number two is Russia. Next comes France, China, and the United Kingdom.

The US, Russia, the UK, China, and France are the five permanent members of the Security Council. Are they voting for a cease-fire so they can sell and re-supply more weapons?

When will governments, the suppliers of arms, and those who buy them realize their greed is the source of war’s pain and dying in the world?

The so-called leaders of our fragile planet purport that peace is complicated. The heart, the temple of compassion and the soul of the Golden Rule, knows it’s simple.

The desert wind

I sat in the courtyard of a beautiful adobe home on the outskirts of Santa Fe, a few years ago and listened to the voice of a high desert wind.

The courtyard trees translated the wind’s voice and pulled me into a meditation of awe and expectation. I had several minutes of being alone. It was magnificent and an eternity in a single experience.

The wind sound was not the rustle of an Eastern forest when the wind speaks through the trees.

It was not the clapping voice of the low desert where palm fronds applaud in a steady wind and clap their appreciation to the All That Is.

It was an undulating hushing voice of a canyon wind speaking through the Pines and Cactus and Sage. This is the same wind that has forever honored the native people of the southwest, and it honors each of us for we are the sister and brother winds of breath.

I’ve spent time in the desert camping, hiking and just listening. It is an experience of stunning silence. In the morning and early evening the wind is present and, as I mentioned, the wind brings its own sounds. In the stifling bright hot of the day all is quiet. The only movements are the translucent and distorting heat waves rising off the baking-sand in the sun.

I think about these things, mostly in the winter.

Good Grief

From where do these people come?

“A Florida legislator’s aide was fired Tuesday after claiming two survivors of the Parkland high school shooting were not students, but instead “actors that travel to various crisis when they happen.””

Apparently he saw a clip on a YouTube conspiracy site.

We may be born ignorant, but you’d think that by the time you are an adult you’d have developed some discernment. Sensitivity might come in another lifetime.

The Path to Greatness

I had an extraordinary experience many years ago. I was on Ellis Island in New York harbor. If you haven’t been there, you should visit it and wonder.

It is a place that is energized by the resonant memory of the past.

It’s an exhilarating experience standing in what is now the Ellis Island museum. I felt the courageous spirits of our immigrant ancestors and profound respect for their courage to embrace unknown change. So many moved step by step through the great hall on their way to liberty.

When I was there amid the din of other people and soft conversation. I walked the path and steps that 18-million immigrants followed. I felt their hearts with each step and stop on the stairs. I sensed the pride at what they accomplished, and at what this country has become because of them and what we still can be.

These ghosts of greatness still linger there, not because they came through that portal of liberty so many years ago, but because they returned to stand watch. Their presence is everywhere, in old photographs, in hundred-year-old scribbled messages to loved ones on a passage wall, and in the descendants, who visit there and keep it hallowed ground.

Ellis island reminds us that it does not matter how or where or when potential greatness comes to this land, it only matters what one does with the manifesting dreams of freedom, opportunity, and responsibility.