A few years ago I would not have batted an eyelid at a distant political assassination. I was your standard boys boy - a city dealmaker on the fast track to nowhere.
But taking time out has greatly enhanced my awareness and empathy for world affairs - and today I am deeply shocked and saddened to hear that Benazir Bhutto has been killed in Pakistan.
This senseless murder of such a great woman - the first woman to be elected as prime minister of an islamic state - twice the prime minister of Pakistan - imprisoned for 5 years in solitary confinement on bogus charges - returning recently to her own country, where her own father was executed, of her own accord and under the threat of an assassination which has now been mercilessly fulfilled - has me fighting off feelings of helplessness about this world that we live in.
Here I am writing regularly about a global shift in consciousness... And then something like this happens. I feel many emotions right now, but mostly I feel despair at religion. Who could possibly sanction such action other than the most twisted of extremists?
I read a quote the other day, I forget who from, but it was something like: 'All that is needed for mankind to progress is for us all to realize we are in love with the same god.'
I agree with that. And I believe Benazir Bhutto did as well.
I believe in God wholeheartedly, but am not religious in the slightest. Although on days like today, I find myself wondering how such things can happen.
God moves in mysterious ways I guess.
I am sure Benazir Bhutto will be remembered as one of the greatest martyrs of all time.
How inspired I am by her life. What a stand to take - to invite responsibility for an entire nation - indeed for all islamic women. She was everything a leader should be, and her death has got me thinking about leadership and all it entails. Honour, love, knowledge, commitment above and beyond personal safety. Integrity (so key in all leaders, and yet so rare nowadays as to be unrecognizable to most).
I am reminded to focus on the good people that we have seen in this world.
And to remember Benazir Bhutto under the banner of 'Leadership'.
So today I have permitted myself a short period of mourning, and will now focus on the silver lining of life, observed by the leaders of the word past and present that inspire me, and who remain the beacons by which I guide my own raft toward where, I hope, lies salvation.
- Aung San Suu Kyi
- Nelson Mandela
- Mohandas Ghandi
- Muhammad Yunus
- Winston Churchill
- Martin Luther King
- Che Guevara
- Helen Keller
I can recommend any or all of these leader's life stories as more or less divine sources of inspiration - each of them has enabled me to connect with my higher self, and thus been instrumental in helping me grow, for which I am eternally grateful:
I believe Benazir Bhutto belongs firmly among these leaders, God bless her.
PS: Sometimes, I wish I could press 'pause' on the whole world, and invite people one by one to step outside and view the whole thing objectively. Truly, if we could only recognize what a giant pickle we are in, that would be something. For now, we carry on blindly, with just a few blessed souls carrying the flickering torch for the others.