Sunday, October 30, 2011

haiku retrospective ccliii

As a Quaker, the subject of pacifism is central to who I am. I struggle with the difficulty of following the path of peace all ways in my life. I experience a lot of ridicule because, even though pacifism might be morally sound, people think that it's impractical.

I've been thinking of John Woolman lately. Woolman was an American Friend in the early 18th century. He was a strong witness against the practice of slavery, and he opened many hearts to his concern.

indigo dye
the lash of the whip
on the slave's back

I also think of George Fox, who refused to take part in the British Civil war almost 350 year ago. Yet when William Penn asked whether he should resign his commission in the army, Fox said, "Carry thy sword while thou canst." By this, Fox meant that Penn's conscience was not in his keeping.

nuclear arsenal
carry thy sword
while thou canst

I look forward to sharing what we can, disagreeing when we must, and learning from our differences.

open hearts
is every step

31 January 2003

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