Wrong time for remembering the dead

Memorial Day is supposed to be a time for remembering the dead, the soldiers and sailors who perished in war.  Yet, this is the beginning of Summer, the celebration of Life, fertility, abundance.  This is but one of many aspects of modern society which is out of sync with ancient beliefs.  Autumn is the time of remembrance, of celebrating Death.  For we are celebrating the sacrifice made so that Life can continue.

Personally, I oppose holding war up to be an honorable or enviable pursuit, but I volunteered to serve in the military, because I felt that I owed my country something.  It was a way of expressing my belief that the whole is greater than its parts, and that the community is more important than the individual.  This was a given, up until the development of agriculture, I believe, because the group was so essential to the survival of the individual.  Agriculture started the thinking of being separate from Nature, not a part of the greater Life Force.  Nature became the Adversary, the thief which stole crops by freezing, or drought, or flooding, or some such.  As we became divided from the rest of the living things, we started to think in terms of ‘Me’, ‘Mine’, ‘I’, instead of ‘ours’, ‘we’, ‘us’.  We became territorial, willing to fight to hold certain ground.  War began to sweep the world.

Yes, sacrifices should be remembered, but we should not idolize the dead for their participation in the madness of war.  Nor should we idolize the military, as is often done with parades and demonstrations.  We should hope that no more lives will be wasted trying to destroy ourselves.


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