“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
The absence of light permits darkness.
Last Friday the human need for light was once again thrust upon us. This time it was in the small Sandy Hook kindergarten classroom where some of Connecticut’s youngest students and dedicated teachers were at school.
School is a “created space” where teachers help students understand the amazing world we live in. Children — people! — are enlightened when we give information to them or free them from ignorance and illiteracy or teach them about spiritual realities. In short, enlightenment is an illumination of the mysteries of life.
The requirement of light
In science class we discovered how sunlight makes all life on Earth possible. Our ecosphere must have it. As people, we must have light to function physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Light — without it, we cannot see.
Speaking of light, did you know December gives us the shortest daylight hours of the year, here in the Northern Hemisphere? The winter solstice raises the eternal question: will the light and warmth return? Will we survive the harsh winter? Is there hope?
December, the same month many of us light the Christmas tree. Some of us even put light shows for all to see. And December gives us the Season of Advent, celebrating Jesus’ birth with weekly readings and lighting of candles, with the Christ-candle lit on Christmas Day.
The Festival of Lights is also observed by the kindling of the lights set in a special candleholder, the nine-branched menorah. Each night one additional light is lit, progressing to eight on the final night. The holiday celebrates the Jews’ freedom to seek God’s guidance for life.
Let there be light. Hope. Freedom. Peace.
Only light drives out darkness
While the national conversation about how to prevent horrific mass murders continues, we will see an inadequate effort to address the issues. There will be assessment of blame, name-calling, political maneuvering, and psychological exploration for answers. Hope will be hitched to legislation around control of weapons, budgets for more mental health treatment, and other partial solutions.
Fact is, there is no easy solution. Something is terribly wrong with us and it always has been.
Who wants the Light?
No, I’m not talking about sunlight. That’s non-negotiable; we understand we can’t live without the sun. We know it would be catastrophic to lose the life-giving light and warmth and stabilizing power of the sun our solar system.
The question, “Who wants the Light?” involves our response to the Son of God, Jesus who is the main character in the Christmas Story.
Clearly we can — and have — disagreed with what He said about Himself:
I am the worlds’ Light. No one who follows me stumbles around in the darkness. I provide plenty of light to live in.
– Gospel of John 8:12, The Message
As Dr. King recognized, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” I’ll leave it to you to determine if we are “stumbling around in the darkness” or not.
So what do you think?
Could it be our world needs more light and love to help us break free of the darkness and hate? If so, that’s the Story of Christmas: God showing His love with the gift of His Son, Who is the Light of the world. Light that brings understanding leads us to what is right, kind, and loving.
As it is in so many business, leadership, and personal development problems and challenges, there is a solution. But it is our receptivity — our “ability and willingness to learn and change” that sets us free or holds us back.
Let there be peace on earth.
THE PEOPLE PROJECT:
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