Amidst all of the stories of terror, horror and outrage that have been flooding around the world over the past few days as the riots that started in London erupted across other cities in England, contrasting tales of bravery and hope have also emerged.
One of the members of my social networking site, PsychicKnight, who lives right in middle of one of the zones affected by rioting, posted a blog on Thursday afternoon describing how scared she was. Three Muslim men standing outside of their mosque had been run over by a car that mounted the pavement five minutes away from where she lived. Retaliation was expected.
In her blog, she talked about her fear and said that where she lived had been turned into a war zone. At the time that she posted the blog it seemed as though different groups, roused to anger by the events, were rallying to go on the march. She talked about locking herself in her home, afraid of the massive riots that were expected to explode.
Just a few hours later she posted that 400 people of all faiths – Sikhs, Muslims and Christians, had gathered around the spot at which the three men had been killed to hold a candlelit vigil and to pray.
Astonishingly, instead of retaliation, this horrific and totally unnecessary loss of life had resulted in a miracle. She said that it had brought together different local communities who had previously never quite seen eye to eye who were now standing as one, united by love to offer prayers for peace.
An on line report of the event from The Guardian describes an uneasy beginning to the gathering when emotions were still clearly running high and some of those present were calling for a march, a demonstration or protest of some kind to show the strength of their feeling. But that even the most passionate calls to action dissolved and soon all that could be heard were the prayers.
As far as the member of Psychic Knight is concerned, the transition from terror to awe is there for everyone to see in her posts. It feels like nothing short of a miracle.
She asks that anyone reading it send a prayer out for the father of two of the men who died as he had a heart attack on hearing the news of the death of his sons. At the time of her last post, she reports he was in hospital. In sharing her story with you, I would like to honour her by sharing her request.
I would also ask that whoever you are and however you pray – whether it is to any one named divinity or whether it is just by becoming still and mindful – you take a moment to add your thoughts to those of the 400 who transformed a community from a war zone to a place of peace and hope. Let’s all extend our thoughts, wishes and intentions to everyone affected by the riots and in any conflict zone anywhere.
This is just one story. There are many more like this. People have gathered to clean up the mess created. People have shown such bravery and courage. What really amounts to a few people have rioted, but many more have shown that they will not stand by and let this happen.
We can change the whole. We have the power to do this. These are difficult, turbulent and scary times but we don’t have to give in to fear. Every single one of us can help transform what has happened and bring hope and unity for the future.
Loads of love,
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