I've always believed this, but have never really articulated this idea in quite this way. It is a profound statement of the human condition. I came to believe this because I was bullied in school. I came to believe then that the bullies, with greater physical mass or agility, were dedicating their brain cells to the use of their muscles rather than the thinking power.
I believe that if you choose might over right, you are making a tacit admission that you are unable to negotiate peace, that you don't believe your needs will be met and, lacking the skill of getting along with others, you are weak. Force is the simpler choice because your brain can't handle peace. It's too complicated.
At once when I saw that meme, I thought immediately of Benjamin Netanyahu, and his allies in Congress, with their incessant calls for war with Iran. The United States has been at war for 222 years out of 239 years in existence. That means we have only had 21 years of peace, an astounding fact to consider, especially if you love this country. That also means every trade agreement, every peace accord, every interaction we have with another country is backed by the threat of force.
A long time ago, someone told me about the two wolves story. It goes like this:
ONE EVENING, AN ELDERLY
CHEROKEE BRAVE TOLD HIS
GRANDSON ABOUT A BATTLE THAT
GOES ON INSIDE PEOPLE.
HE SAID "MY SON, THE BATTLE IS
BETWEEN TWO 'WOLVES' INSIDE US ALL.
ONE IS EVIL. IT IS ANGER,
ENVY, JEALOUSY, SORROW,
REGRET, GREED, ARROGANCE,
SELF-PITY, GUILT, RESENTMENT,
INFERIORITY, LIES, FALSE PRIDE,
SUPERIORITY, AND EGO.
THE OTHER IS GOOD.
IT IS JOY, PEACE LOVE, HOPE SERENITY,
HUMILITY, KINDNESS, BENEVOLENCE,
TRUTH, COMPASSION AND FAITH."
THE GRANDSON THOUGH ABOUT
IT FOR A MINUTE AND THEN ASKED
"WHICH WOLF WINS?..."
THE OLD CHEROKEE SIMPLY REPLIED,
"THE ONE THAT YOU FEED"
So for most of our existence as the United States, we've been feeding war, and war is evil. There is no such thing as a good war. People die in wars, innocent people, who have nothing to do with the war, and evil people will profit from war, using innocent people as collateral damage. People who engage in war will find every justification for war, but none for peace. It's an addiction. They will even claim that war will bring peace, but it only brings more war.
The reason for this is that if you feed war, you starve the thinking power. Consider how we were lied into the war in Iraq. No yellow cake, weapons of mass destruction or any link between Saddam Hussein and the 9/11 attacks were ever found. Yet, they were all pretenses for the war. The American people were advised by our leaders at the time, not to think about the war, just to do it. Let us get started with the war. Let us send your sons and daughters to die in a war over political power, oil and pride. For the United States. For Israel. For God. For country.
The war siphoned resources away from the people. Instead of paying for infrastructure, we got bombs of destruction. Instead of paying for education to nurture the thinking power, we got the power to destroy other people without thinking. Instead of giving people the health care they needed, we got an endlessly polluting war.
I've seen how this works on a very personal level. I've been very angry when I was a kid because I was bullied, but I really wanted just to be left alone. I believed that being bullied would scare the other kids away from being friends with me. That I would look crazy in front of the girls upon whom I had crushes on. I was probably right given the crazy advice I got from my dad.
I was taught by my father to fight rather than to make friends with other people when dealing with bullies. By learning to fight, I learned to harness my anger for aggression when bullied. I remember how I felt when I hit the adversary. No thinking, just action. And when it was done, I was sitting in the principal's office, crying. Just wanting the bullies to stop and leave me alone. In peace.
The adrenaline of conflict threw all thinking out the window. I became more interested in revenge than learning. There is no way around it. If you're thinking about revenge, you cannot think about finding ways to prosper with your fellows. You can only do one or the other, not both. There is no other way. Believe me, I've tried and failed miserably.
But had my father taught me how to make friends, I might have been surrounded by friends when the bully approached me. I would have had the peace I needed to complete high school and go on to college. I would not have spent the next 30 years of my life struggling to figure out who I was and what I wanted to do. So I'm here to tell you, as a fellow man and to our country, you have a choice.
You can choose war or you can choose to think your way to peace, contentment and a long life. Which one do you want? I choose to err on the side of peace. I hope you do, too.