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One of the many things that hit me last night when I had the deep conversation about my life and how I’d strayed off my path was the idea that pacifism isn’t for everyone. Some people think that it’s the right way to go, but I’ve really been thinking about it, and I’m not so sure.
Now, I do believe that in most cases, violence should be a last resort. The world responds to too many things with hate, violence and war, and it’s pretty obvious that it’s not working. The world has become ugly and frightening. Something needs to change. But is going from the extreme of too much violence to the extreme of no violence the right thing? Extremes tend to be bad as a general rule.
I was thinking: If a mosquito or spider is biting me, I’m going to swat the sucker and kill it. Does that make me a bad person? I don’t think so. It was attacking me, I defended myself. It was in its nature to try to eat/attack me, but it’s in my nature to not be eaten/attacked.
I don’t think eating animals makes me bad either. Yes, something has to die, but that’s the way it’s been since the dawn of time. It’s nature. Now, I’m a big advocate for humane treatment and killing of food animals, but I’m still going to eat meat. I’m not going to feel guilty about that. I also have high respect and gratitude for every life that comes to an end to help me continue mine.
And here’s another one that crossed my mind… If people with guns are coming to kill you and your family, do you really think that sitting down and telling them that you don’t believe in violence is going to save you? Not likely. If someone comes at me with the intention of killing me, I’m going to fight. Sure, I’ll try to disarm and subdue them and leave killing them as a last resort, but I’m not going to sit down and chant while someone points a gun at my head or at my family.
If you’re a pacifist, and that’s how you really want to live, so be it. For me, I have different views and I’m not going to feel bad about them anymore. Sometimes violence and death are part of things. Total non-violence isn’t likely to make the world a better place. Less violence would help, and people should find better ways of dealing with issues, but sometimes you need to stand up and fight.