Believing in Humanity

“To save a life is to save all of humanity.” Guess where this quote came from?
spark-temple-hug-jasonmongue_0939_printI believe in humanity, peace, love and compassion but I know not everybody does. In a world divided, I’ve never understood why humans take sides if given the chance. Religion divides us, just as skin color, socio-economic class, sexual orientation… even siding with a sports teams can turn humans against each other.
Why do people do this? What’s the motivator? Could it be fear? Do we feel safer being among people that are like us, or who think like us? Do we simply need an enemy to blame and hate? Does this make us feel better, thinking that we are better than the other side? I am truly baffled why people like taking sides, especially when they use religion as a reason to hate.
I don’t belong to a traditional religion but I do believe in individual humans who promote peace, inner-peace and outer-peace. However, I can’t deny that organized religions, cultural practices and other spiritual beliefs have some of the same principals that I believe in… like love and compassion. That in itself, reaffirms my faith in humanity.
The Dalai Lama says, “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive,” and I believe that. In fact, I can’t understand why all humans don’t believe in compassion. I know some have been influenced by fear, money, power and greed, but they are still human. So what happened to their humanity? Is it still there? Can it be found?
Speaking of fear… history teaches us that successful dictators have used fear as an effective tool. If you can make a person fear something they don’t understand, and you can make them hate that person very easily, not even knowing why. Politicians seeking more power, recruit followers by using this fear tactic. It works, especially when that audience is suffering in some way, looking for an enemy to hate, someone to blame for their situation.
I used to think it was only less-intelligent or ignorant people who fell for the fear factor, but I know some nice smart people who fall for this. Why does it work? Why do smart compassionate people support politicians who are promoting hate and division of humanity? I just don’t get it.
Back to the question of the quote, “To save a life is to save all of humanity.” It’s the motto of the White Helmets, everyday Muslim men and women who volunteer to rescue people in Syria, after the bombings of innocent civilians. They have rescued over 60,000 people so far. The White Helmets have been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Here’s the twist… the quote is originally from the Quran. If you fear or hate all Muslims simply because their faith is different than yours, (or because your your political candidate tells you to), you may want to ask yourself why. Do some research, learn what people of other religions believe, versus believing what the media feeds you.

You are human, I believe in you. Honor your humanity by thinking for yourself, having an open heart and embracing your compassion. You may be surprised to learn that humans who are different than you, are more like you than you think.
Go Humanity!

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