Wednesday, April 19, 2017

"As I listen I am so conscious that for me this is just one more terrible thread in a pattern I am still learning how to read. For them it is a nightmare that will never go away, an inescapable agony at the very centre of their lives. How must it be to wake every day into the knowledge that they, along with their whole society, have no place of refuge, nor expectation of respite, from these deep injustices and horrific crimes."

"All that is human in me recoils from this"

A background note:
"By the beginning of the ninth millennium BCE, the settlement in the oasis of Jericho in the Jordan valley had a population of three thousand people, which would have been impossible before the advent of agriculture. Jericho was a fortified stronghold protected by a massive wall that must have consumed tens of thousands of hours of manpower to construct.38 In this arid region, Jericho’s ample food stores would have been a magnet for hungry nomads. Intensified agriculture, therefore, created conditions that that could endanger everyone in this wealthy colony and transform its arable land into fields of blood. Jericho was unusual, however—a portent of the future. Warfare would not become endemic in the region for another five thousand years, but it was already a possibility, and from the first, it seems, large-scale organized violence was linked not with religion but with organized theft." (my emphasis)

— Karen Armstrong, Fields of Blood, 2014, p. 13

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