In a world beset by seemingly inescapable human woes and suffering, by obstacles to global progress that can seem insurmountable, by dangerous forces of authoritarianism abroad and at home, by misinformation campaigns that politicians deliberately champion, and by the forces of climate change and disease that shake our very core, how do we grasp those nuggets of thanks that keep us unbroken and make the morning shine?
It’s not always easy. Today’s headlines — as millions are on the brink of starvation in Afghanistan and residents of Waukesha, Wisconsin (and the rest of the country) are stunned by the tragedy of a joyful parade gone awry — only underscore the challenge.
Hope and goodness, the flipside of fear and evil, are the age-old answers. Humankind has been here before. Miraculously, good has (mostly) persevered.
But for good to prevail it takes a strong majority to believe and speak out; to counter fear with hope; to challenge the harmful actions of others with actions that support community — whether that is local, regional or global.
On the local level we know that for every tragedy, friends and neighbors rush to counter those aggrieved with untold kindnesses. Cities, states and nations would do well to act similarly.
The resolve to help each other find a way to smile, to bring joy to the world not anger, is work worthy of thanksgiving.
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So much of this situation rides on money, apathy, and our resistance to change.