The Sixties, no doubt, will go down in history as the age of love: 'Make Love, Not War', 'All We are Saying is Give Peace a Chance', 'All you Need is Love'. It was such a defining decade that still now its tenets resonate in fashion, music, art, and, most importantly, as a philosophy that reminds us we can make a better world if we put our minds to it.
Every decade has its own message, either positive or negative. Each one has its own personality and its own teaching to future generations. This one is our responsibility. Let’s not let the twenties become the decade of hate. Everybody hates something: People who don’t wear masks hate people who wear masks and vice-versa. Some White people hate Black people, who hate Asian people, who hate White people. Some people hate Trump or they hate Trudeau. Some rednecks hate immigrants and immigrants hate rednecks. Some Christians hate Muslims, who in turn hate Atheists. Some Protestants hate Catholics and some Catholics hate Anabaptists. Some ignorant people hate Asians, because they consider them responsible for Covid-19. If you hate just ONE person because of their race or their culture, you are a racist.
STOP. Let’s stop and think about the souls behind the faces we hate. Let’s humanize those faces. Let’s not simply pack them in a category that we hardly understand and throw them in the “unknown yet hated” drawer. Let’s stop and consider what kind of feelings are governing our lives. If we are following hatred that’s what we are going to have. St. John of the Cross said: “Where there’s no love, put some love, and you will have love.” Unfortunately, the same thing happens with hatred. The thing is, whilst love brings joy and peace, hate brings unhappiness and distress.
Now that spring cleanup time is coming, why don’t we make a spiritual spring cleanup too? Why don’t we declutter all kinds of hate and resentment in our lives, like we declutter old tattered clothes. Why keep it? Hate is not good for us. It never was. Another old saying goes, “Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” Well, let’s clean up every "variant” of resentment with a scrub brush from every nook and cranny in our souls. Then bleach it with the fresh air of love, so we can welcome spring as our time to be reborn.
We are going through rough times and sometimes it feels like it’s never going to end. But, hey, have you noticed a big grey A-frame building with glass walls at the Park, just by the pool? Did you know that it’s a gathering space the City of Fort St. John has built so that people can get together to hang out no matter what the weather is? Not for any particular kind of meeting, but just for the mere pleasure of enjoying each other’s company.
This tells you that our City is investing in embracing neighbours, in getting together, in celebrating life, not in a New Reality or a New World Order. The time for hugging and laughing together will be back very soon.
Let’s welcome it with a clean, open, happy heart.
Rosario Lloret is from Spain. She writes about global issues and her experiences immigrating to Canada and living in Fort St. John.