Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Defining Hate and Nurturing Love

Due to the state of our world right now, I have been thinking a lot lately about the word hate. Like love, it is a word that has become so commonplace and used so flippantly that we forget its true meaning:

I hate this shirt.

I hate mayonnaise.

I hate when someone cuts me off in traffic.

I hate Mondays.

In reality, hate is not the adequate word to describe any of these circumstances. Hate is much greater, much more powerful, much more dangerous. Here is the definition via http://www.merriam-webster.com:

noun, often attributive \ˈhāt\
Definition of HATE
a : intense hostility and aversion usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury b : extreme dislike or antipathy : LOATHING

This definition reminds me of the similarities between hate and fear. One usually drives or supports the other. I think immediately of the way some people have responded to Bin Laden's assassination. I'm alarmed to see many of my fellow Americans rejoicing, celebrating, and cheering over his death. Though I understand and agree that he was a horrible, evil man who needed to be held accountable for the innocent lives he ended, something deep inside my soul will not let me rejoice or celebrate the death of any living creature, period. I cannot celebrate death. Many of you may have seen this next quote circling around facebook and twitter the last few days as I have, but I think it's appropriate and meaningful, not just to this situation, but to the way we live our everyday lives. Martin Luther King, Jr said this about the subject of hate:

"I will mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that."

Like the words hate, love, and fear, darkness and light have also become highly desensitized. They've become a little too wishy-washy; their meaning has been stripped to the point of cliche and redundancy. But let's remember what they mean really. Let's remember the importance of light. Let's remember the importance of love. Not just for others, but for yourselves.

How many of us hate who we are?

Do you really hate yourself?

Your arms, your waist, your thighs?

Do you hate them enough to want to kill, to want to destroy?

I used to. Not now.

Next time you think you hate your body enough to punish it, remember what Dr. King said.

" Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that. "

Hate breeds hate.

Evil breeds evil.

Only love breeds love.

Only acceptance breeds acceptance.

Love yourself.

Love the light inside of you.

It's there, even if it's just a spark.

It's there, even if you don't see it.

Don't let it burn out.

Magnify it.

Celebrate it.

Nurture it.

Let it grow.


  1. I am glad that you feel the same way as I do regarding the American's reaction to OSL's death. I am rather taken aback about how excitement is being celebrated over a person's death. So I can relate with you about what you have said completely.

    I love the quotes. This is a good reminder to step back and ask ourselves why hate?

  2. Beautiful & well said. It's great to know there are people out there sharing the opinion that rejoicing in death is WRONG.

  3. Yes, I agree.
    I posted this on my Faebook after stealing it from a friend and I have no idea where it came from but...

    ‎'I can only think of one death that brought the world peace. And we celebrated that a week ago..'

    It seems off to celebrate death...that woman used as a shield? The whole thing is just sad.

  4. I'm glad my bf and I are not the only people a little. . . confused at the way people are reacting to the death of a person.

  5. Yes. I agree with your sentiment so much. Like you said, I know he was a horrible person, but how can we, in good conscience and pure heart, celebrate someone's killing?
    Thank you for writing this.

  6. This is beautiful.
    You're right. Hate breeds evil. <3

  7. randomly found your blog, and LOVE the positivity! keep it up!

    ps. good luck with the move! ive personally found moves to be very stressful.