“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” –Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The truth is, it’s far too easy to hate, and so in the absence of perfection, we often rely on hatred to get us through our days. Hate is perhaps a little strong, but if it’s not love, it must be the other—cursing the car who cut us off on our morning commute, wishing our boss would lay off already, or even the mindless act of passing slight judgments on friends as we scan through our Facebook news feeds. It’s just so easy to slip into.
But is this what we’ve come to? Is this who we are? Haters? I don’t think so, not really anyways. Though collectively we may default on hatred (or judgment or indifference), individually we are much more, because in the end hateful is never what we want to be. We don’t long for lives of bitterness, ugliness, and anger. We long for lives full of love, joy and peace.
It’s strange to write about humanity on such a large scale. Some will even say doing so is simple naivety. But is it really so crazy? Crazy to think that we could all get along? Is world peace a child’s dream or an adult’s failure?
We are too different, too divided, and yet when we strip away the exterior of who we claim to be, are we really so different? Often times it is only in the face of tragedy and duress that we get to see the oneness of humankind. When hurricanes wash away boardwalks, fires burn away homes, and tsunamis devastate coastlines, we see—if only for a second—that in the end we are all just mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, loving and longing to be loved.
Why, then, do we let hate get in the way? Why are we so quick to see difference before sameness? Why do we let things like politics and religion divide us so easily? Perhaps for that simple reason, because it is easy—easy to hate, easy to ignore, easy to dismiss. Instead of choosing that path, we challenge you to step away from easy, because the hardest, most radical thing to do in this world is to love. And ironically enough, it is also the most worthwhile.
Image via Curb Appeal