On Martin Luther Kings Day this 18th of Jan, after fasting for 2 short days, in solidarity with Witness Against Tortures 12 day fast for the prompt closing of Guantanamo Bay Prison, a few Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers gathered in a mud house on an Afghan winter night, to have a heart-to-heart conversation with members of the Witness Against Torture and later, with friends from Landmark Education Olympia facilitated by Dr Dennis Mills of Capella University.
We asked each other the questions of our times and our hearts.
Friends of Witness Against Torture led by Frida Berrigan and Bob Cooke encouraged the Afghan youth with their kind words, their tears and their singing. The conversation ended with them singing We shall overcome and a sense of the change in consciousness and the friendships which all human beings long for.
We remembered the words of Martin Luther King, in the everyday Dari of Afghanistan.
Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'
A lie cannot live.
At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.
Why do we respond to fear, hate and anger by hurting one another?
Frida Berrigan of Witness Against Torture : They first become wealthy professionals but they dont want to. They want to lower their income because they dont want to pay for war
Dr Dennis Mills of Capella University : Dr King talked about 3 major demons, 3 problems.
The 3 ( demons ) are racism, materialism & militarism.
Those are very prophetic words because we who are making this call are still working to change ourselves for generations.
ما اسانها کدام انسان دیگر را خواهد شکنجه کردیم؟
Which human will we humans torture next?
Pause in empathy or perish in estrangement
We shall live in peace some day
We shall overcome some day
Now is the time to pause in empathy or perish in estrangement