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    Make love, not war – Lech L’cha

    War, famine, politics, conflict, crisis, catastrophe. That’s this week’s parashah. It is also the picture of world events in the media.

    What does not appear nearly so much in the papers and television is the day to day agenda of daily life: love, food, health, housing, employment, children, old people, animals…

    In the Bible we get both the big and the little concerns. For the time being the focus is on the family life of Abraham, though that will change soon and move on to Isaac, Jacob and their progeny.

    If anyone asks what was happening in Abraham’s time they will find macrocosms and microcosms, big events and little events, tension between human groups – and small, almost insignificant episodes of human love and helpfulness.

    Wouldn’t it be interesting if the modern media reported not only on provocative politicians but also on the simple lives of ordinary people, not just the weapons of destruction that antagonistic nations direct at each other but also the quiet devotion of parents and children to one another, shepherds to their sheep, teachers to their pupils, doctors to their patients, lovers to their beloved?

    The clash of the cymbals is not the only element in making music: there is also the poignancy of the violin strings.

    If we thought more about the violins we might have a more peaceful civilisation. If we thought more about books and less about bombs we might have a happier world.

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