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Psicologia de La Venganza(Dr.Pamela Gerloff)

05/04/2011

The Psychology of Revenge: Why We Should Stop Celebrating Osama Bin Laden’s Death

Asking the questions that will bring us peace
Published on May 2, 2011 by Dr. Pamela Gerloff in The Possibility Paradigm

I have modified this post slightly to respond to and incorporate feedback from comments received to the original post. Many thanks to all who are contributing to the conversation–Pamela

While the killing of Osama Bin Laden is being enthusiastically celebrated throughout America and some parts of the world, to say that such merriment is out of order will surely be considered heresy. Nonetheless, I’m saying it–because it needs to be said. For starters, let me ask this: “Those of you who are celebrating–could you just pause for a moment and consider: What message are you sending the world?”

I certainly understand how those who have suffered from the events of 9/11 may feel relieved, even happy, to have “closure” after ten years of waiting for “justice to be done”–and I don’t quarrel with such feelings. Closure is a natural yearning and can help people move on from serious trauma. And, of course, feelings are feelings. If you feel joyful, you feel joyful.

But celebration in the streets and on the airwaves is neither appropriate nor advisable–really–no matter what your feelings of elation. Here’s why.

“Celebrating” the killing of any member of our species–for example, by chanting USA! USA! and singing The Star Spangled Banner outside the White House or jubilantly demonstrating in the streets–is a violation of human dignity. Regardless of the perceived degree of “good” or “evil” in any of us, we are all, each of us, human. To celebrate the killing of a life, any life, is a failure to honor life’s inherent sanctity.

Plenty of people will argue that Osama Bin Laden did not respect the sanctity of others’ lives. To that I would ask, “What relevance does that have to our own actions?” One aspect of being human is our ability to choose our own behavior; more specifically, our capacity to return good for evil, love for hate, dignity for indignity. While Osama Bin Laden was widely considered to be the personification of evil, he was nonetheless a human being. A more peaceable response to his killing would be to mourn the many tragedies that led up to his violent death and the thousands of violent deaths that occurred in the attempt to eliminate him from the face of the Earth; and to feel compassion for anyone who, because of their role in the military or government, American or otherwise, has had to play a role in killing another. This kind of compassion can be cultivated, as practitioners of many different spiritual traditions will attest.

Read complete article onPsychology Today http://bit.ly/jfPiv0

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