I don’t know what to say; the Sri Lankan attacks bring back so starkly the events in my city on the 15th of March, when people were killed when they gathered in worship.
I cannot fathom an evil so big that would allow this to happen? Even if your faith is different, or you are an atheist and faith is incomprehensible, even then how do you plan an attack with guns or bombs on people gathered in prayer?
I am not Muslim, yet I can fully appreciate the love and grace that has held the Muslim community in Christchurch together, since the terror attacks here last month. I am Christian and I know that the love of God has supported and restored me through many personal tragedies. I should be free to express my faith in my way, just as Muslims should be free to gather for Friday Prayers, or Catholics for Easter Sunday Mass, without fear of guns and bombs.
If this evil that allows such wanton attacks to happen is in any part due to us, and in the way we live our lives limited by our own understanding, then surely, this is another urgent call to change?
I cannot stop guns and bombs. I can control my own words and thoughts and actions though. And if everyone endeavoured to do the same, to embrace our differences and diversity rather than raging against those things, surely that would have an impact?
People are people are people and the golden rule has always held true: treat your neighbours in the way you would want to be treated. Hopefully that includes a lot of love and empathy and grace.
He aha te mea nui o te ao
[What is the most important thing in the world?]
He tangata, he tangata, he tangata
[It is the people, it is the people, it is the people]