The last post attempted to provide some insight into individuals acting out because of their patriotic duty to an ideology. I try to understand this, but I find it impossible. Besides the history of the Holocaust, I have personal friends whose stories about the Rwandan genocide have a profound impact on me.
I struggle to understand the issues of war, where patriotisms lead to violence. What is impossible to comprehend is the antagonist who faces the victim and does unspeakable and horrific violent acts. How is it possible for one person to see another and abandon all values? Stories of atrocities so barbaric that they defy explanations. Here it is impossible for me to have empathy for the perpetrator. Instead my admiration is for the victims who are learning how to tame these demons. Fortunately, these people of evil are small group. Do not let these monsters rob you of your character.
Then there are those who live in an ego-centric world. They move through life like zombie, without connecting with the common good. While the previous group hold the gold medals of evil, this group is somewhere between silver and bronze. Remember like the Olympics training in the art of ego-centricity, time will eventually live in a frozen mental state. In this case, you need to face reality to see the depths of their inner retreat. If they live within their own cells, empathy is impossible.
Then finally there are the majority whose struggle with the burdens of life or narrow paradigms block their ability to see. They see things as black or white. The ability to connect with these individuals can expose many colors. Lift the shades to expose a horizon of rainbows by sharing stories. The ancients created new possibilities by retelling myths that open new possibilities. When those who see the bright colors of life, share their stories, we all advance to a new and brighter level of understanding. In this case empathy has value in making progress. This is the way we gain civil rights, advance science, develop new technologies and advance the socioeconomics of our civilization.