Talking ’bout Barabbas…

Yesterday, in every continent of the earth, some human beings showed their care for the planet, by treating its creatures with respect and its soils and waters with wisdom.

Yesterday, in every nation of the earth, some political leaders did their duty according to their best knowledge, putting the good of their people above concerns of personal advantage or reward.

Yesterday, in every farmland of the earth, some farmers put long-term fruitfulness above short-term profit.

Yesterday in every industry of the earth, some workers united to secure their common good rather than individual safety.

Yesterday in every science in the earth, some scientists cooperated in testing and re-testing their discovery rather than rushing to announce sucesss.

IMG_0506Yesterday in every university of the earth, some scholars found happiness in handling the material of their discipline, rather than worrying about research ratings.

Yesterday, in every city of the earth, some strangers met and laughed together rather than being suspicious of one another.

Yesterday in every school in the earth, some pupils learned something new and were delighted, rather than aiming at test results.

Yesterday in every church, mosque, synagogue, temple, ashram, and sanga of the earth, some people looked for truth rather than religious dogma.

Yesterday, in every village of the earth, some residents reached out in compassion to a brother or sister in need, rather than giving them the body swerve.

Yesterday, in every street in the earth, some families lived together with love and commonsense, rather than tearing themselves apart.

Yesterday throughout the earth, some prejudiced people began to find difference a source of interest rather than threat.

Yesterday, over every land on earth, the rain fell and the sun shone on the just and the unjust without discrimination.IMG_0508

On the whole, it wasn’t a bad day, with many happenings that would please the heart of Jesus.

But all our mass media have focused only on the terrorist attacks in Spain, because they use them for self- aggrandisement, for adding to their sense of importance as they obsessively chew over the minutiae of disaster even before the facts have been established. All media outlets are to some extent guilty, but the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme is especially offensive as its teams of clever boys and girls ask their smart questions and interrupt with their egregious theories the foreign officials who are good enough to speak to them in English.

All of which leads many of us to imagine we live in an evil and frightening world.

We should remind ourselves how selective our news is.

Our mass media don’t want to know about Jesus (or Mohammed or the Buddha or Moses) but choose, as Jesus’ opponents did, Barabbas, the violent jihadi. They ignore almost all the surprising good of the earth in favour of its repetitive evils. I’ve always prided myself on being well-informed and up to date with the news. Now I know that to preserve a truthful impression of the world, I must ignore much news presentation, try to feed on facts only, and dig hard to find the stories of human goodness that are buried beneath the rubbish of 24/7 coverage.

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