My heart is troubled by the atrocities in Paris and the storm of darkness that is brewing around the world, pitting man against man in the name of God. Sometimes it is hard to remember that the things that unite us are much stronger than the things that divide us.
If science and religion cooperate to uphold and extend dignity, and left and right remove the inequities that thwart fair competition, we can build a global society that's as close to heaven as we need.
One reading of the human story emphasizes war and domination. Another telling highlights overthrowing tyrants and progressively emancipating ourselves. The key to deciding which of these perspectives is predictive of the human future lies in a paradoxical property of power.
Many insist that man's predatory practices are undiminished and ineradicable. But an opposing trend is becoming visible. While admitting that "the arc of the moral universe is long," Martin Luther King Jr. believed that "it bends toward justice."
What people really want in relationships is dignity, not domination. While it's not hard to understand why people who have suffered oppression might fantasize taking a turn at domination, to actually do so is to over-reach.