IS COMPASSION DEAD?

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THE HUMMINGBIRD WAR

The Hummingbird Controversy has escalated into all-out warfare.

The gloves are off, the diplomacy is over, and the positioning and maneuvering about has ended.  This is war!  And the dispute is over two bird feeders with free food containing Hummingbird Food, an enriched Natural Springs Nectar with essential vitamins and minerals.  That is what the fight is all about!

Imagine media’s observations of this fight.  It could be assumed that social dynamics or religious beliefs have brought this confrontation to this reality.  They might consider that perhaps prejudices or biases have deepened among these little creatures causing such hostilities.  Some have a greenish hue, one has a red ring about its neck, and some are longer while others are short and fuller in appearance.  They each have long beaks appropriately. But they are all fighting trying to outdo each other or cause harm by flying into each other with strike after strike.  They are not equipped for warfare, but are made to fly swiftly and with precision to procure their daily rations of nectar for their survival.  But, they are fighting with a vengeance.  Or this may be an old fight only escalated by the presence of ‘free food.’

The feeder was moved and the fight was moved to bring the conflict to the sight of it.  It didn’t matter that one feeder is in the front and the other is in the rear.  The fight now is on, without a break throughout the day.  While flowers with nectar from nature still bloom within sight and a very short flight, these beautiful and otherwise amazing creatures fight over ‘free food.’

What comes to mind is this?  Humanity’s fights could very well be similar in nature to these hummingbirds.  Much of our war mongering may be over ‘free stuff’ that is available to meet everyone’s needs.  But there are some of us who insist that the ‘free stuff’ is mine, all mine!

Have you heard the often quoted statement, “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer?”  There is probably more truth to that comment than we’re willing to admit.  Some people actually want it all!  Not just access to resources, blessings, or opportunities, but the entirety or the whole of everything.  Some don’t just want a piece of the pie; they want and must have the entire pie.  And, at any price, they are willing to fight to have it all, whatever “it” is!

Could some of the world’s conflicts be settled or tensions eased through thoughtful consideration of the needs of others, other nations, or other parts of the world?  Have we overstated ‘war and rumors of war’ to mean something other than what it really is, an unwillingness to share resources that are provided for everyone’s benefit?  Land, oil, water, air space, outer space, technologies, the list goes on and on.  But the truth of the matter is that all of these things and everything else belongs to someone else regardless of our right(s) or entitlement.  Entire kingdoms and empires have been lost due to man’s need to control everything.  Greed trying to control access to the resources and the resources themselves will drive entire nations to a frenzy of war when out of control.

Isn’t it interesting that the real things of life go neglected, overlooked, wasted, or stockpiled away at the expense of a fight for ‘free stuff.’  Freedom is jeopardized but cited as the just and noble reason for the fight.  Life is lost for what is presented as noble!  Later on, with more objective thought and careful examination, it can be see for what it really is,  a fight to grasp and hold on to resources, blessings, and opportunities from others who have as much right as everyone else to consume or use for their own benefit and blessing.

The nature of war has changed such that we cannot automatically assume that once lofty ideals, principles, or noble causes are the motivation and incentive to stand in the wake of aggression toward others.  Great wars have been fought for noble causes and won so that ideals, principle, and the best things in life might flourish and grow.  It is a new day where mongering on battlefields is at times driven by hidden agendas of the haves against the have nots.  The prophets in ages long past spoke to such issues and were oppressed and killed.  Not much has changed!

This is not an effort to oversimplify the matter.  Conflicts are real, the loss of life is real; the fight is overwhelming expensive in effort and resources.  It is even observable with these little hummingbirds that are expending time, energy and everything they have to this fight.

On one level, like those hummingbirds, it can be a matter of survival and sustaining a way of life.  But no one hummingbird needs the whole feeder.  No one hummingbird can consume the whole bottle of enriched nectar in an hour or a day or a week even.  It will take time for the overpowering and winning hummingbird to consume all of the contents of two feeders. Greed has them enraged and out of their senses, determined to win, to feed exclusively, and have it all to themselves individually!

Would it help if it occurred to these little creatures that the provider of the feeder may have in mind providing more to replace the already consumed nectar.  In other words, whoever decided that these little creatures should have access to ‘free food’ may again provide from among their resources with the same generosity some more ‘free food.’

Which brings up the most important thought about this warfare:  None of the ‘free food’ belongs to either of the hummingbirds.  It is not in their possession, neither of them.  They have access to it!  But once they leave for the season to head south to warmer weather during winter’s reign, the feeder will still be here and they will be gone.  The nectar will still be here and still available!

Think about the fight, the warfare, the conflict that you’re in or the ones that you support.  What is it really about and what really happens if you win?  And, what happens when you or the ones you gave everything to in support of their aggressive solution are gone?  Whose ‘free stuff’ will it be when you and your way of life are gone?

Our sense of entitlement to everything cannot be our justification for the fight!  Sharing and coexistence are worthwhile alternatives to a fight to the death!

Be careful of engaging in all-out war!  It may not be worth all that it takes to win, for the hummingbirds or for mankind!