Friday, March 28, 2008

Today is Friday

Running Time: 57 minutes
Genre: Documentary
On September 1, 2004, heavily armed extremists stormed into a school in Beslan, Russia. For three days, more than a thousand children and adults were held hostage in a sweltering gymnasium, denied food and water, and forced to keep their hands over their heads. The harrowing siege ended in violence that killed more than 350 people--half of them children. Through chilling footage and heartbreaking interviews with more than a dozen young survivors, this documentary explores the devastating aftermath of one of recent history's most heinous atrocities. (TV14) (AC,AL,V)

Today is Friday. And it is a day when I am supposed to spend my time tuning in to Holy Spirit and spending my day either doing a food fast or a mental one. I did neither. I mostly complained and procrastinated about my life. I made a to-do list, of which I don't think I have done even one thing. I day dreamed about the perfect life that I have been praying for for years. I skipped class and decided to sleep the afternoon away: I told myself that I had had a difficult week.

Then I watched a documentary on the CHILDREN OF BESLAN, the synopsis of which is posted above. I wept as listened to the children recount their experiences of that horrific day, their small voices desperately clinging to an innocence that will never be theirs to have again. I watched the chilling footage of mangled limbs and bloodied, naked children---- not only had the terrorists taken over their school, they had ordered the children stripped of what little clothing covered their tiny bodies.

I listened as one child described hesitantly how he saw his mother die. I saw the pictures of another girl, probably ten years of age but with the limbs of a six year old attempt to climb back into a burning classroom in search of her mother after the explosion from the terrorists' grenades flung her outside the building.

I listened as these children described what it felt like to thirst so much that they were forced to drink their own urine to make it through the three day siege. One child whose mother died has a little shrine of sorts for her at home where her picture is placed and in front of which a bar of chocolate is placed--her favourite--and a cup of water, so she will not thirst in the afterlife; as that had been her last desire before she was killed.

I generally do not comment on acts of hatred. I see it in some way as giving attention to those who sought it by commiting those acts in the first place. But I have to constantly wonder how humans can cross that line that seperates us from the rabid animal? I say rabid animal because in the animal kingdom, animals don't prey on each other for fun. They kill for food and to defend themselves. We are the only species of living things that would deliberately seek to cause one of our own pain. And the sick part of it is that we can in most cases justify our actions.

Some will use religion as their reason. Some will use monetary and material gain. Some will say that it is to right wrong commited against their person. Some will say that it is because those on the receiving end of their brutality were deserving of the cruelty.

I had prepared a post to share my exhaustion, frustration and confusion at some of the things going on in my life that I would so much prefer were not going the way that they are. At this moment right now, all that seems insignificant.

I might just be emotional. I might just be tired. Or I might even simply be equating the insignificance of my issues with the horror and pain that the Beslans experienced. Who knows?
What I do know is that, I am going to lie down and take a nap. Then I will wake later to have something to eat and do some of the work that I know I have to do.

And before I drift off, I will place my attention on my inner eye and think of all the great things that I do have going for me. Then I will speak to my spiritual guide and invite him to meet me in my dreams and speak with me. Because I simply want to say thank you.

Thank you for the fact that I have a bed that is warm. It is in a room of my own. It is filled with books, both educational and recreational that fill my days and nights with comfort. There is music in my room and a window that overlooks a generic looking parking lot. I make fun of that parking lot but today I am glad it is the way it is; not filled with dead bodies, screams of agony and fanatical individuals threatening to kill me or anyone else.

Thank you for my family that has sacrificed so much and though we are seperated by miles and a current lack of money to rectify that, we are there for each other.

Thank you for my life because it is filled with experience, opportunities and hope. And all those are cushioned by prayer.

Thank you simply that it is beacause of God's love that I exist.

And thank you that even though those terrorists tried very hard and some lost their lives, there were some that survived not just to tell their tale but to remind the rest of us to simply look at our lives and give thanks.

Have a great weekend.


For the love of me said...

My first thought was to run to youtube and find the video, but I changed my mind, it will only make me more sad.
There are too many children suffering in the world and all to what purpose?
May God help us all.

Jinta said...

for everything, thank God.

i take a little issue, though, with your use of the word 'terrorist'. i agree they are rabid animals as described, their actions are incomprehensible to any right thinking person, but they are not the only people that strike terror in my heart:

i was terrified when america elected george bush; i am terrified when i hear him speak; i feel terror when bombs drop on iraqi children, killing many more than saddam managed to achieve; i am in terror as i wonder when the turn of nigeria may come; i could not sleep for terror when i watched a tv program of the israeli military shooting a 10 year old palentinian boy dead as he cradled in his father's arms while trying to shelter from indiscriminate shooting; i felt terror when i read that israel dams palentinian rivers, therefore having access to 93% of the fresh water to their (about) 15% of the population; terror i feel about the spate of theft by our so called nigerian leaders, leaving the majority of the populace in abject poverty.

for me, the world is full of terrorists - beslan being no exception

Afrobabe said...

Cat u just succeeded in making me ball my eyes off...and I have a date today oh...watched the whole thing on youtube....very sad...I admire the courage of the kids...they still try to laugh and move on...

Innocence stolen....for what??

pamela said...

You know often times we forget to be thankful for the little we have.

Thanks for the reminder.

Ms. Catwalq said...

for the love of me: It is quite a good documentary to watch because I think above all, what you take out of the story from these children is not what happened but that they made it through and that they will keep going...

Jinta: I agree. But the real reason I used that term to describe was because --as you would see in the documentary-- when the children referred to them by a different name, the men responded that they not and that they were specifically terrorists. They came there to inflict terror and for the duration of their stay and for some time afterwards, they did.

Afrobabe: mo sorry gan an. That was not my intention

Pamela: I too had to be reminded so...I passed it on.

naijalines said...

Reading this just makes me sad. It's also frustrating cos you can't do much about it. But we need it brought to our consciousness every now and again. So thanks... for me being more appreciative today of what God has given to me.


The reality of life is heart wrenching. I can only try to remain relatively levelheaded when I see evidence of man's hatred and worst characteristics.

My sista, keep your head up, continue to do good and we are voting for your clip at Current TV!


Waffarian said...

Yeah, saw that documentary a while back. I think most people that live in Europe probably followed the whole thing when it happened on tv...I know I could not sleep cos I kept hoping something would be save the kids...I cried, I shouted, I screamed...seeing the images live was just heartbreaking....

Yeah, sometimes we all need to put things into perspective in our lives. We have to remind ourselves just how inconsequential certain things are in life. Na so.

meanwhile, which clip una dey talk about? u know say i like amebo job, make me too go vote naaaaaaaaaaa

Unbiased said...

Awww babes that was so emotional. You alright? I have never heard you so Melancholic.
It is really a sad story but life sadly does go on. I pray people do learn from the sadness of the past.

eFJay said...

I'm too scared to go and watch the video... i still hvnt recovered from the footage of the girl i saw, stoned, kicked, squashed, literally mashed to pulp by her own people just because she chose a man 4rm a 'forbidden' tribe.

I'm thankful to God for everything i have...

'ef babe'

darkelcee said...

Every day one need to be thankful dear.

but this is heartrending.

how could they?

Thank goodness i am not God, their death will be horrid andit will take them 25 years to "accomplish" that.

Loads of love

Naapali said...

Amen, Ase!

NaijaBabe said...

We are thankful for all the good things we have.
We are thankful for the fact that we woke up to see this day.
We are thankful for life.


La Reine said...

That is sad.

More signs pointing to the fact that Jesus is coming soon...