I remember watching the footage of those planes flying into the towers over and over again on September 11, 2001.
In my mind, I can still see every detail, the trauma permanently imprinted deep into my psyche and replayed over and over. The deep, inconsolable sadness I felt, the despondency, the feeling of utter insignificance — but those feelings never helped me heal. Neither did they bring me to a greater connection with the ones we lost or their loved ones. In fact, they did those people no service at all. They only served to prolong the shock and helplessness of that day.
I think back on that as the news coverage from Newtown continues. Honoring the victims and the survivors does not mean we must relive their horror and know every detail. It is enough to empathize with them, to extend love and compassion and to take action to ensure this doesn’t happen again. As spiritual beings, we can even celebrate those boundlessly big souls in those heartbreakingly tiny bodies that were chosen for some unknown reason for this hugely impactful purpose.
We, as a nation, are in an increasingly familiar place of mourning today.
So, be kind and loving to yourself and to each other. Limit your exposure to the media coverage of the incident itself. We can’t begin to heal our wounded spirits if we are continually revisiting the horror of that day. Instead, tune into the Newtown coverage during the healing moments – like the prayer vigil – so we can remember our own connectedness in this complex human fabric where love can be as prevalent as madness if we so choose.
May God help us all.