The creation story in the Bible’s Book of Genesis was not written as a historical or scientific account, but it does affirm some very important truths. One of these truths is that it is not good for human beings to be alone. Yet in today’s society, many people suffer from an illusion of separateness. How many times have we heard that the perpetrator of violence was a loner, someone alienated from society? Could the illusion of separateness be the root cause of the mass shootings we are witnessing? Gun violence has reached epidemic proportions today, and the leading cause of death for children 18 years of age and younger is gun violence. What can we—ordinary citizens—do to counteract the experience of separateness and alienation? We can build relationships of acceptance, warmth, and mutual trust in our day-to-day encounters with friends and strangers alike. We can rejoice in our interconnectedness and our interdependence.
By Delores Dufner, OSB