I don’t believe in co-incidences. I truly believe that the “all powerful” has created the ordered chaos we are feeling in our collective unconscious. Strange things happen in the universe but somehow the chaos does have order and meaning. We need not ponder very deeply to interpret it.
This past weekend, amidst warnings of violence and economic collapse, divisive talk, disparagement of many of the most stalwart pillars of democracy – our free press, our intelligence community—our need to prevent foreign intrusion into our Democracy – and a deep divide about the definition of “fake News” — amidst all that, we were pulled into the vortex of the real meaning of leadership, roll-modeling and patriotism. The symbolism is not lost to those of us willing to acknowledge that some higher power has been working overtime to have produced this synchronicity of events — even to the matching death dates and alike diagnoses of John McCain and his across the aisle buddy Ted Kennedy.
Who cannot fail to recognize the juxtaposition of the timing and the impact – short term as it may turn out to be – of contrasts so stunningly illuminated? Who cannot be moved by the significance of character in leadership, and of the desperation with which we are now seeking a role model for the healing of our tribal severances? Are we asking too much to actually require a soupcon of virtue from our leadership – in addition to the nitty gritty of being or purporting to be — an “artful negotiator?”
And here’s the ultimate philosophical conundrum. We are a country worshipful of “winners.” We tend to throw our “losers”—as in second place-holders and even further-down-the-line-losers – into the scrap heap of nonentities. And yet in the lives of all of us, we have experienced “losing” at something. Losing often teaches us important lessons, often makes us better people. And surely, losing is humbling. Humility counts for a lot in relationships, in accomplishing big things. It is a kind of secret quality, not often touted in expansive resumes but it has subtle life-enhancing power. It tends to even the playing field. And, contrary to some held opinions, it is not the antithesis of confidence or expertise –quite the opposite. It says: I know how good I am and I can show it. I don’t need a bullhorn to make it understood.
So now, all the hoopla is over, and we’re back to reality. We’ve actually had it spelled out to us with the simplicity of a first grade reader. We’ve come face to face with contrasts. The non-coincidental acts empowered by the “all powerful” stand etched electronically for the world to see and repeat and will undoubtedly be brought to the fore at each anniversary or as a reminder should any further act degrading our democracy come into play.
And even the Good Lord Herself will no doubt breathe a deep sigh as She intones the famous saying, “You can bring a horse to water. But you can’t make him drink.”
Or can you?