ISIS! Syria! Ukraine! Palestine and Israel! News headlines are mostly about wars and conflicts around the world. After watching news you probably get sad, worried and frustried. Breaking news are always bad news, sometimes I think that is unwritten rule for the news media.
It’s not all that bad. According to Dr. Steven Pinker, Pulitzer prize-winning author and Harvard psychology professor, “Today we may be living in the most peaceful era in our species’ existence.”
When you think about human history and all the wars that happened only in 20th century, this sounds like it could be true. One war can ruin one whole generation. Poverty, destroyed economies, people without job and with PTSD, that usually comes with peace after a few years of war.
Education and empathy is the best weapen against wars. Educated people will not let to be used and manipulated and they usually know that the war is not the best solution for anyone. Education is a good start, but it’s not enough. Many leaders and dictators are smart and educated, but ruthless and brutal. Empathy is the key! Children are not our enemies, just because they are muslims or because they are born in a wrong culture. There is more than Us and Them, there are hopeless mothers, children, innocent victims and people who don’t want to be a part of the whole game, just like us.
Difference in religious beliefs are the main reason for conflicts in the 21st century. Sam Harris, author of Letter to a Christian Nation, observes, “Faith inspires violence in two ways. First, people often kill other human beings because they believe the creator of the universe wants them to do it…Second, far greater numbers of people fall into conflict with one another because they define their moral community on the basis of their religious affiliation: Muslims side with Muslims, Protestants with Protestants, Catholics with Catholics.” The findings confirm the importance of secularism, separation of government and religious institutions. Sometimes misinterpretation of religion is used by the leaders as an act of manipulation.
It is good to know that there are fewer conflicts today, and wars don’t kill as many people as they did in the Middle Ages. From the other side, the differences in our religious beliefs are the biggest cause of conflicts that we have today.
This video explains in nice and simple way the history and usual causes of conflicts. I learned something new with this video and I hope you will too.
I think this world could be a better place for all of us if we all do our part. I want to believe that we are going in a good direction.
Be smart and share love.