Knowledge is the beginning…

I’ve been focused on Jasper’s idea of the “loving struggle”. As I delve deeper into my thoughts on the matter, I find myself thinking about the struggle. If I look for a definition of the word, I find:

1. to contend with an adversary or opposing force.
2. to contend resolutely with a task, problem, etc; strive
3. to advance with violent effort

When I think of the word, I think of a resolute determination. Normally if a person is engaged in a struggle, they are refusing to give up or be beaten by the situation. I think this is a very important thing to remember when we think about the “loving struggle”.

When people engage in “loving struggle”, I believe they are showing some faith in their hope for a solution. They believe it is worth the blood, sweat and tears that might be shed before an end to the conflict is found. They will continue to struggle even if the odds seem stacked against them.  By entering into a compassionate or at the very least respectful dialogue with their adversary, they are keeping the door open.

Around the world, in conflict situations near and far, we can find brave, hopeful individuals who are willing to do what they must to foster “loving struggle” in themselves and others. One example of individuals trying to bring about change through an opening of doors is found in the East-West Divan Orchestra.

The orchestra is the dream child of two great men, Edward Said and Daniel Barenboim, and it is built around the reality of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.  Bringing together young musicians from thoughout the middle east (both Arab and Israeli), they are providing an opportunity for dialogue.

I give you a brief excerpt from the documentary which was made about their work. If you have an opportunity to watch it in its entirity, I urge you to do so! Although his partner, Edward Said, has died, Barenboim continues the work with the East-West Divan Orchestra.


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