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Marvin Gaye in 1973

They say that those who don’t remember their history are bound to repeat it. Think of all the major enemies that this nation has had in the last 100 years that have turned into friends and partner, countries such as Japan, Germany and Russia.

Those who were alive during these various wars can remember how they felt about the enemy of the moment at that time. But if you make even the most cursory study of history you encounter many more examples of enemies turned friends. It makes you wonder.

Anyone who has studied history realizes that nearly every war was fought to gain territory or material goods for the very few at the top of the food chain, and that the ideological reasons were just a thin veneer to disguise the motivations of those who stood to benefit. It has been this way for the last 4000 or so years.

The people who fought and died in these wars often end up bitter and confused, they ask what did they fight that war for, after all?

There are a few things that come to my mind:

  • The memories of people are short.
  • People will easily replace one enemy for another, never realizing that they have just switched the masks of the opposition, not changed anything underneath, nor learned anything from the pain and suffering of war.
  • People are easily swayed by public opinion especially when influenced by people who know how to manipulate emotions that engage the ego.
  • There are no such things as enemies. A person on the path of individual enlightenment doesn’t have enemies, instead, he uses opposition to gain enlightenment. He uses his own thoughts as creative tools, rather than allow his thoughts to be dictated by others; he knows that when his ego is engaged through conflict he slips back into unconscious behavior. Instead of striving against an enemy or even against himself, he strives to notice his ego’s emotional engagement and use the situation to become more conscious.

So what could be the reason for opposition and enemies? I think that they are part of the creative process of the evolution of consciousness. Artists know that the presence of certain elements make better art: tension is one and contrast is another. What brings on more tension and contrast than war?

Has there ever been a time in your life when an enemy became a friend? Or perhaps you suddenly saw through your enemy to see their pain? At the base of most emotional dysfunction is a need to be accepted. Not loved, just accepted. A little acceptance and tolerance can go a long way.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr