Finding Common Ground after an Earthquake
By C. Naseer Ahmad
Worries abound in conversations one hears across the table in dining places and as one travels from place to place. The US election result has displeased a larger number of people, perhaps more so than those who are happier with the outcome. Earthquake is not too harsh an analogy to describe what people are finding out of what really lays beneath the tectonic plates of division.
Experiencing an actual earthquake is not something one looks forward to because of the havoc unleashed by forces beyond human control. I remember being terrified as a young boy when severe jolts and powerful rumblings felt so threatening. I also remember the soothing voice of my mother reciting the verses from Surah Al-Zilzal (99) – the Shaking:
And whoso doeth good an atom's weight will see it then,
And whoso doeth ill an atom's weight will see it then.
That voice has been echoing again in my ears and it reassures me again. Like before, this voice serves as a guide in finding balance after this earthquake. This caring voice whispers to do all the good one can it suggests searching for a common ground with those who are angry and perhaps on a self-destructive path because they just see the world as black and white.
“I am live in a ‘Republican’ bubble and he lives in an ‘Independent’ bubble; we all must reach out of our comfort zones,” said a thoughtful retired executive during a lunch with friends outside of Washington’s Beltway. Getting out of one’s comfort zones and reaching out to those who look different or worship differently might be the best not only to heal the divisions but also to help each other out.