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It's my personal soapbox, a place for me to express thoughts and feelings, musings and rants, reflections and recollections; to have fun with words -- about things spiritual, environmental, social, political, economic, and, from time to time, personal. And of course about peace. Soapboxes are in public places (as London's legendary Hyde Park) on purpose, and so I invite conversations with you, for it is through civil discourse that we can gain some perspective on the seeming chaos of these changing times and learn together how to shape a positive future for ourselves, our communities, and the generations to come.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Russian Meddling - Did They or Didn't They?


Yesterday, I posted on this topic to my Facebook page. (A slightly edited version of that post is reproduced at the end of this blogpost.) Shortly after that posting, the news came out about Special Prosecutor RobertMueller’s grand jury indictment of 12 Russian agents for hacking into Clinton campaign and DNC email accounts.

Now, I hold Robert Mueller in high regard and consider him to be an eminently, almost religiously, fair and honest truth seeker. Nevertheless, no matter where this legal process ends up, the underlying message I was trying to convey in my Facebook post still stands.

There are always many sides to any story and much more than meets the eye. It is critical in these turbulent, rapidly changing times of chaotic breakdown and creative breakthrough to:
  • Not rush to judgement
  •  Be open to new perspectives and deeper truths
  • Not pose enemies or dehumanize perceived adversaries, even as we take steps to protect ourselves from the meddling of others in our own affairs
  •  Be honest about our own role in creating and perpetuating adversarial relationships – with Russia and others, as well (after all, we have our own history of spy craft and dirty tricks, even to the extent of destabilizing and overthrowing democratically elected governments)
  • Realize that probably one of the most damaging and war-perpetuating slogans that we spout all too often without realizing the implications is, "The best defense is a good offense."
These are key principles to keep in mind and make part of our personal practice for building lasting peace. In doing so, we can be inspired by the 13th century Persian poet, Jalaluddin Rumi, when he wrote:

Out beyond ideas of wrong doing
and right doing there is a field.
I'll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase “each other”
doesn't make any sense.

So, here’s that version of yesterday’s Facebook post:

Thisarticle about so-called Russian meddling is a lesson that we should take everything we read about in the media or hear from the government with more than a few grains of salt, at least a tablespoonful. Always keep an open mind for various sides of the story and hidden agendas. Even this one.

And remember the immortal, sage words of that great Yogi philosopher: “It ain’t over till it’s over!” So, although the swamp is still there and growing muckier by the tweet, and while things will likely get worse before they get better, just remember: “No mud, no lotus.”

By the way, I Googled and found a Media Bias / Fact Check review, which rates the source of the article, Consortium News, in the Least Biased category and High in Factual Reporting.

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