Lately, as I watch the world erupt in hate, my heart hurts. My heart doesn't just hurt for one group of people, it hurts for all of humanity. The massacre last month in Orlando, the killing of Philandro Castile and Alton Sterling, the shooting of nearly a dozen police officers in Dallas, has left me asking: "Why?!" and has caused me to pause and reflect on how we can counter the hatred and violence in our country.
After my morning meditation, I opened the front door to retrieve the newspaper, looked down and there was an empty egg carton with my neighbor's name written on it. Around here, an empty egg carton is the universal sign our neighbors need fresh eggs. I, as their neighbor, feel I have an obligation to make sure they are taken care of, just as they would or have done for me.
Standing there with the empty egg carton in hand, I immediately reminisced back to last week when one of my dogs ate an entire bag of dark chocolate. Realizing I needed to quickly make the dog purge herself of a potential deadly overindulgence, I reached for a bottle of hydrogen peroxide, but alas: it was empty. I quickly ran to the neighbor's house, was given a bottle of peroxide, wishes for a healthy dog, and a kind text message reminding me "help was only 2 doors away!"
Simple acts of kindness between people, and loving our neighbors as we love ourselves, is exactly what's missing in the world. When did we stop loving each other? When did we become so blind to the humanity of our brothers and sisters that we are willing to kill them over their sexuality, religion, race or occupation? It's time that instead of fighting against each other, we stretch our arms out towards one another, rising up and loving our neighbors as we love ourselves.