“Awe is a way of being in rapport with the mystery of all reality. The awe that we sense or ought to sense when standing in the presence of a human being is a moment of intuition for the likeness of God which is concealed in his or her essence. Not only persons; even inanimate things stand in a relation to the Creator. The secret of every being is the divine care and concern that are invested in it. Something sacred is at stake in every event.”
- Abraham Joshua Heschel (stolen unapologetically from Experimental Theology)
I have long thought that a truth commission such as the post-apartheid Truth & Reconciliation Commission in South Africa may be the only way to move forward, loath as I am to see the boastfully guilty pardoned.
How Should Obama Deal With Bush Era Torture? puts it succinctly, along with photographic and documentary evidence from torture regimes of the past: the Khmer Rouge, the Inquisition, the Gestapo.
Torture will remain an ugly stain on the U.S. until it is dealt with openly and transparently. The truth is, to me, more important than seeing punishment meted out on the offenders.
Once people acknowledge their common humanity, it becomes more difficult for them to demonize and destroy each other. It is far easier to find principled compromise with one of “us” than one of “them.” Our religious convictions can help us erase the age-old dividing line.
- Bill Clinton
“Peace is not the absence of conflict; peace is the presence of justice.”
- Martin Luther King, Jr., quoted by Dr. Cornell West (here)