A sunny, frigid, late winter day. Later this week the temperatures will moderate and there will likely be a sap run.

I’ve taken to avoiding news feeds in the evening, and try to limit my intake of news during the day; I also spend too much time fact checking. Anyway, the sheer volume of hatred towards those who are vulnerable, and the environment, is simply overwhelming, a tsunami that threatens to devastate all I love in the world.

Of course, none of this craziness is new. I imagine Jung dropping by for a spot of tea. I can imagine him sitting there in the sun, drawing on his experiences leading up to World War Two, and expressing empathy for our situation. He would point out that we may easily become what we fear, and draw parallels between Islamic extremism and the behavior of extremists on the Christian right. Then he would wish us well, grab a cider doughnut for the road, and retreat to his hermitage.

I’m finding it difficult to take much solace in the knowledge that we humans fall off the cliff every now and then. These historical moments simply create way too much suffering, and I just can’t settle into any kind of detachment. If we learned anything from the events of the past hundred years, it is that any profound change requires acts of both personal and societal repentance and reparation.I understand there is only so much any one person or group can do to turn the tide, even as we must try. In the meanwhile, history moves forward under the watchful eyes of angels, even as many of us dig our heels in and resist.

© 2018, words and photograph, Michael Watson

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