Saturday, June 20, 2009

Our Changing Times - Our Amazing Times

It is Saturday 6/20/2009 and it’s raining…
It has been raining now for three straight weeks in a row and it feels like three months in a row. I feel like a moldy wet rag and I can’t wait to see blue sky and the sun again.

My wife is at work and I have the house to myself.
I have been struggling with a two-month-old writers block, but I have recently been feeling the urge (need) to write.

So here I sit, at my kitchen, looking out into the wet, grey sky. Feeling blah…

I have my laptop on the table, open to my book,
“Spiritual Evolution- A Journey from Atheism to Spirituality”…
I notice that for whatever reason, I am distracted.
I have the TV on CNN and I am engrossed by what I am seeing.

Iran… What had been the “Axis of Evil” ...our enemy…
Is in the midst of another revolution.

The first thirty years ago was bad for the US but worse for the world.

Religious extremism of any type… Muslim, Christian, Jew is simply wrong.

Now images of young Iranians putting their lives at risk in support of their freedom are on CNN and I can’t break away.
I see the bodies of young Iranians, lying bloody; being carried by their friends and relatives and my thoughts and prayers go to these young freedom fighters.

I ask myself, Why is it that one small group of people who are in control of a larger group, always seem to resort to violence to keep that control?

And I think of how sometimes, I take the precious gift of our freedom for granted.

The rain outside my window suddenly seemed less dreary;
the clouds seemed less grey.

In comparison to what was happening half the world away I feel embarrassed by my own selfishness and self centeredness.

I am brought back to the early 1960’s with JFK as our president when I was a naïve, idealistic pre-teen.
The way I felt about our great country was to be challenged when that great man fell.
With each shameful act of violence to keep control, my idealism faded and my cynicism grew.
Robert Kennedy,Martin Luther King,
It seemed as soon as there was someone to believe in, someone else was there who didn’t believe and resorted to violence to stop any new hope.

Again, my hope returned with the promise of the Clinton administration,
only to be disappointed by the man himself, but not his message.

Now I am sitting at my same old kitchen table,
watching my same old TV and trying to write in my book,
but I am witness to an amazing change in a country thousands of miles away
that will not allow me to do anything but sit and watch change, in action.

This change for freedom is being accomplished by the voice of the Iranian people and I am brought to the recent change in our country.

Our change was peaceful, organized and a polar shift from the previous administration, with no violence.

How great is this country?

And I am once again an idealist no longer naïve; too much life experience in these 59 year old bones, hardened by too many “What could have been’s”.

But here I am again,
Mr. Idealist and proud to be one.

Now, always the optimist, even when I have been disappointed so often, I look at the TV and think of the “What If’s”.

I think back to the time, seven months ago on Election Day 2008 (Another memory that will always remain with me).

10 pm watching MSNBC and thinking
“He might actually do it! Obama may be the first African American president of the United States of America”.

I remember thinking that this man, may be “The One…”
The one that Kennedy could have been, given the chance.

But, Obama is different than all the rest or at least it feels that way to me… This time I don’t think I will be disappointed.

I gave myself the audacity to think... “What if”.

And at 11pm when Keith Obermann said
“MSNBC now projects that Barack Obama IS the next president of the US”, with my jaw agape and a tear in my eye, I thought “What if?”

What if he can change the view the world has of my country?
What if he can bring us together?
What if this was just the beginning of the changes?

"What If" there is the same change in Iran?
And now I am sitting at the same old table…
In the same chair…
Watching the same TV… on the same channel,
But the world could be very different tomorrow…
What if we could actually have World Peace, for our children?!

This is certainly an amazing time to be alive on this planet.