I wonder what it is about "group-think" or the "herd mentality" that makes people commit injustices they might not otherwise practice? We all need the solitude of the inner desert to get in touch with our true self, which is rooted in Love.
“There are crimes which no one would commit as an individual which he willingly and bravely commits when acting in the name of his society, because he has been too easily convinced that evil is entirely different when it is done ‘for the common good.’ As an example, one might point to the way in which racial hatreds and even persecution are admitted by people who consider themselves, and perhaps in some sense are, kind, tolerant, civilized and even humane. But they have acquired a special deformity of conscience as a result of their identification with their group, their immersion in their particular society. This deformation is the price they pay to forget and to exorcise that solitude which seems to them to be a demon. But compassion and respect enable us to know the solitude of another by finding him or her in the intimacy of our own interior solitude. It discovers her secrets in our own secrets. If I respect my brother's solitude, I will know his solitude by the reflection that it casts, through love, upon the solitude of my own soul. For there is One Solitude in which all persons are at once together and alone."
Photos: Canyonlands National Park, UT, November 28, 2015
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Stephen Hatch, M.A. is a spiritual teacher and photographer from Fort Collins, Colorado. His approach is contemplative, inter-spiritual, and Earth-based.