Today most of the world woke up feeling, perhaps, grumpy and resentful that it is Monday again. Perhaps even some might have put in a sick notice after too much partying on the weekends. Some maybe thinking that this is just another boring day, nothing too fancy and nothing worth-mentioning. Few perhaps woke up raring to go and are full of energy with plenty of ideas and plenty of check boxes to tick. There are, however, even fewer who woke up today grateful that they are still alive, like those who survived the deadly killings by masked gunmen in a crowded shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya.
As I wrote this post, Kenyan military forces are still battling it out with the gunmen, purportedly claiming to hail from Somalia. On a seemingly normal Saturday, as herds of shoppers and tourists spent their weekend in one of the largest and most crowded shopping mall, a reported 10 − 15 terrorists stormed the mall and began throwing grenades and firing on civilians. Westgate Shopping Mall, one of the high end shopping mall in Kenya, became witness to the bloodiest event in the history of Kenya. The last death toll were at 68, with more than 200 wounded civilians. It is a horrifying day for the usually quiet nation, and perhaps for the world to reflect upon. For those who survived, some may ask, ‘Why me?’ as they breathe the fresh air of freedom, while still wiping their tears, and perhaps even blood of family members or loved ones who died next to them.
Shootings such as this perhaps may have occurred many times in recent times, but still I continued to be shocked beyond belief every time it happened. Nothing, perhaps, will ever prepare me for such cold-blooded killings by fellow human beings on their own kind. Some blamed Islamic extremists, and some pointed their fingers toward Somalian soldiers as a form of bloody revenge towards Kenyan soldiers still stationed within Somalian borders. Whatever was in these soldiers mind as they fired hot bullets upon hot bullets upon innocent people, irrespective of their skin colors, and their native descent? Witnesses admitted that the shooters shouted for Muslims to run away. No matter what reasons they may have, I fail to comprehend the seeming ease with which they fired upon people they have no hatred against. Is there no more room for love in this world so full of hatred and bitterness?
I am not writing to condemn Muslim, nor am I writing to claim for any other religion being better. As a person of faith myself, I witness the lack of love even by people who claim themselves person of faith. I write to remind my readers, and perhaps myself to share the pain with the victims and their family members. Much similar to how we feel numb after repeated physical pain of similar magnitude, it is possible for a person’s heart to feel numb from repeated mental pain. As many people can attest to, pain is much more manageable and bearable when it is “shared” in the sense that, it is not in loneliness. I am writing to encourage those who may have lost family members or loved ones. For those who were not directly or indirectly affected, lets lift up a prayer of gratitude for the peace that we have, and learn to express love, however we can, whenever we can to whomever we can.