Friday, April 19, 2013

How Much Can Two People Do?

As of my writing of this, it seems as if the police are tracking down two suspects in the massacres at Boston and MIT. Two people did this. Two people planted bombs at an event that was memorializing the children victims of a previous massacre. Two people killed and maimed dozens of others. Two people held the entire nation in fear, as we saw a fun, athletic, family event torn to shreds. Families were literally and figuratively blown apart. Our hearts clenched and our breaths held and I am sure there was a moment when we all, each and every one of us, wondered when the next attack would hit, if we would be the next victims, or our loved ones.

Two people did this.

It a vivid reminder of the power of two single individuals. That it takes so few people to destroy so much. It's easy to destroy. I can rip apart a piece of paper in a second, but I cannot ever make it whole again. Those two men ripped apart lives, and nothing any person can do can bring them back.

Two people did this. Just two.

But the question isn't "how much can two people do?" Not really. We know how much two people can do to destroy and hurt and terrorize. We have seen it, not just now, in this instance, but time and again. We know how much two people can do to destroy.

The real question is: how much can one person do?

One person can spread joy. One person can inspire. One person can light up the whole world. Bombs burn quickly and then are nothing but dust and ash. But joy and love and faith and hope can light up the whole world with just a spark.

Two people can pull a curtain of darkness over the entire nation. The entire world.

But one person can bring light. And it only takes a flicker, a flash, a gleam--and darkness is destroyed.

It is not a question how much hate two people can bring to the world. It is only a question of how much love one person can.

How much you can.

Be the light. Be the hope. Kill the darkness.

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Cross-posted from my tumblr.


Unknown said...

Thank you. Inspiring. I'll share this with my friends.

Peggy Eddleman said...

This was beautiful. Thank you.

Liza said...

A perfect quote for such an imperfect time...

Ann Eisenstein said...

Thanks for this, Beth. So very true. And if I can add: "Be the change" (Ghandi).

Cheryl said...

Love this, Beth. Thank you for your light in the world. We can make a difference. We can bring hope, healing, love into the world. It really does help change things. And we need to be reminded of it. Glad for your post.

Unknown said...

I'm a little late on this one, but I feel I really need to toss this into the internet-o-sphere: