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Letter: Timing is right for us to ponder and reflect

"Love your enemies" --The words of Jesus in Luke 6:27-30

"Hatreds do not ever cease by hatred, but by love; this is an eternal truth ..." -- The words of the Buddha in the Dhammapada 1.5 & 17.3

In the wake of the horror that took place in Boston last week, it might be a good time to take in the wisdom of the ages. With such wisdom teachings in mind, we now have another opportunity to deeply and honestly reflect on the question, "Why?"

Why were these acts committed? The purpose of such an inquiry may be helpful in terms of understanding ongoing threats to our country, but I think more importantly, it may shed light on the question of whether the U.S. is engaged in unnecessary activities that are inflaming others around the world.

This is not a call for a 180-degree shift in our actions. Such an inquiry may only lead to one degree of change, but one with the potential for huge implications.

It seems that we missed a crucial opportunity for this kind of reflection in the aftermath of September 11. Instead of a period of self-reflection, we reacted with deadly military might, a reaction that continues to this day.

Is the world any better off? Are things getting better?

Atrocities do not occur in a vacuum. Is our country engaged in actions around the world that are not essential to our interests, and yet fuel violence toward us?