Palestinian support---Israeli hatred--- Projection---Compassion
I recently spent a day with the Palestinian Solidarity Group in Portsmouth . There was a lovely Middle Eastern lunch laid on for free, prepared by who I imagine were ladies from that area. The program was much as you expect, several presentations of the terrible injustices perpetrated on the people of the West Bank and Gaza. Sitting there listening to all of this and the remarks of the audience, of how powerless they felt. Other than the various Protest and Boycott schemes what can one do? Sitting there I was very tempted to stand up and encourage people to join a group, like the one I did in October . In some way this had made it somewhat easier to know and live with this appalling situation.
I thought about those Israelis that were with us, some , of whom , said they were Zionists, and we're concerned that we didn't start to hate the Israeli population for what was being done in their name.
In psychology there is a mechanism called Projection, where you offload the parts of yourself that you don't like onto others. Was that what was happening at the meeting?.
How would the Buddha have handled this?. As a non- religious Jew but nether-the -less still finds warm feelings towards Israelis, who mostly are non practicing themselves, handle this?. When I was in the British Army doing National Service I also found it difficult to accept what was happening in Cyprus where I was posted. But when I went out on a night ambush, I volunteered as being a cook I was a non-combatant, I couldn't wait to shoot at something !
And then you hear about those amazing reconciliations that happen between opposing soldiers after the war.
Nelson Mandela set a good example of how to handle these terribly difficult situations.
Only time will tell , but eventually things will come to an end, I suppose we can only live this life in a way that would reflect well on any afterlife that we may have, the greatest mystery of all. PLG Tony