The riots in Minneapolis and other US cities in the past week show a clear example of how elusive love is in American society right now, and how divisive drives are overpowering the social atmosphere.
What does it mean to develop love among human society?
It means nurturing and articulating the nuances of our rich diversity in a common effort to strengthen that which holds us together as a society.
Instead of acting as if there are no (or should not be any) differences between us, we would be wiser to use our differences in order to invigorate that which connects us all.
The problem with acknowledging our differences is that we can fall into the trap of thinking of ourselves as better in one way or another to others, i.e., we can mistakenly be led by our divisive drives to feel a false sense of pride and self-esteem due to certain inborn features and characteristics.
Therefore, we need to be aware of our divisive drives, the ego concealed within each and every one of us, as an opposite form of love, which has the power to envelop all of our divisions.
It is written about this, “Love will cover all transgressions” (Proverbs 10:12). In other words, transgressions—our divisive urges—are needed in order for love to blossom, like the dirt that’s needed in order for a plant to grow. Likewise, the more hatred and division is felt underneath the love, the more fertile and voluminous the soil is for love to flourish upon it.
At the moment, however, we have no view of what is above the ground. We are still immersed in the darkness of our hatred and divisiveness, like a worm digging its way through a dark world inside a radish, unknowing that there is a completely different bright world full of light when it finds its way outside.
However, precisely due to our immersion in social division, and its destructive expression in the riots, America has what it takes to make a great overcoming, to rise above the divisions and build loving and caring relations among all American society.
The American Dream is infused with many examples of individuals beating the odds and achieving success in the conditions that the country provides. In the current crisis, the only difference in achieving the American Dream is that the success is not individual, but of society at large. As a result of overcoming hatred with love, the American society, with its major influence on the world, would pioneer a positive example that the world would be inspired to follow.
Yet, in order to cultivate love upon our differences, we first need to acknowledge our nature-given differences. That is, our skin color or other inborn characteristics are neither worthy of pride or shame, since they required no participation on our behalf.
We can be proud when we indeed participate in our development, building an atmosphere of love, mutual understanding, consideration, encouragement and support that fills society, upon the innate differences that we each have. Such a peaceful and harmonious atmosphere would then truly be our creation, worthy of pride.
While it seems impossible for a message of love to be heard among such divisive and destructive times, at one point or another, it will have to be heard, and even realized, in society.
If love fails to cover the hatred and division boiling throughout American society, then we can expect more riots, murders, destruction and suffering, until we will become completely helpless and desperate.
At that point, then maybe we will be ready to implement love above the divisions, but until then, the message of love above division will be like a message in a bottle floating around turbulent seas, waiting for someone to find it and put it to use.
Featured in Quora