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My Struggle To Explain 9-11

Much has been written, and will be written, to mark the anniversary of 9-11. Words flow from poison pens, from weeping pens, from indignant pens, from angry pens. Wise writers and foolish writers conjure word pictures to explain it all to us and to remind us of the horror of that day. Politicians on all sides use it, too. Some shamelessly, some reverently.

I struggled for many days to explain the lesson of 9-11.

The natural inclination of this writer is to take the facts, organize them, and explain them so you can make some personal sense of it, drawing your own conclusions. But, this is an impossible task because to explain it one must understand it. And, honestly I cannot.

Evil is never understandable to rational people. Only evil people truly understand evil. Only evil people can truly explain evil. For society, evil deeds are plainly seen and understood on the basis of their results - the dead and the maimed and the impact on the loving families of the victims. But, this is not explaining evil. This is only "show and tell" through words and pictures and sound of evil's devastating fallout.

My inner being cannot grasp why anyone would visit violence upon a fellow human, especially innocents. What is loose in the perpetrator that causes this? What is the emotional and mental value in this? Is there a demonic force running loose in the world bent on destroying all that is good and worthy and lovely? Or is this simply "man's inhumanity to man"? And, if it is, what is at the core of this?

Yes, we should remember all those who lost their lives on 9-11 and remember the New York Firefighters who saved more than 20,000 lives while many of them sacrificed their own lives in the process. We should remember the families who lost futures with those loved ones who died. We should remember, most of all, that evil remains in the world, working its will through those who are beguiled by it.

As we mark the anniversary of 9-11 each year, writers will write, documentary and movie producers will produce, prayers will be offered, as will curses, and fingers of blame will be pointed, to remind us. But, we must not look to them to explain it, we must look within ourselves. We must examine ourselves to find a resolve to rid the world of this evil. We must, regardless of nationality or religious belief, look for the good in all people and focus upon that. We must also recognize the evil in people and reject it absolutely. We must remember that, on 9-11, thousands of people of all nationalities, of all religious beliefs, and of no religious belief, were murdered that day. Evil is blind. It kills and damages blindly. It cares only about the body count and the carnage it leaves in its wake.

Evil does not exist without man as a willing vessel to carry it into the world neither does good exist without man expressing it. This, I believe, is the lesson of 9-11 that we need to learn and act upon.

Submitted by:

Jim DeSantis

Jim DeSantis runs http://on-line-tribune-front-page.blogspot.com featuring free articles, courses, and ebooks on a variety of topics. You are invited to submit your opinion on this or on any other topic to Jim's blog. If accepted, your opinion will be publishe


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