I watched some of the video coming out of Japan. One was of the tsunami “slowly” overtaking a town. It was surreal as the water, over a period of minutes, crept across the landscape, showing up first on the streets, then the floors of stores and then creeping up and up until the buildings were floating. It was so strange because I had envisioned that a tsunami would be quick, powerful and immediate, like a flash wall of water taking seconds to wipe out all in its path. It was six minutes long. Yet it seemed like it took an hour. There were people walking up the path as the water rose and they continued watching it. What struck me was the calmness that they exhibited as they witnessed so many lives and livelihoods wash away before their eyes. Then I read an article today about a shelter where the people are cultivating a sense of calm in the face of the utter devastation and scarcity that is facing Japan and its people. I think about that and how fear and panic can overtake us all. Especially in the aftermath of an earthquake, tsunami, more earthquakes, nuclear threats and on and on. Yet I am awestruck by the grace of those in Japan.
I again open my hear to everyone affected. I hope that each and every person in Japan can take comfort in knowing that they are role models for all of us for handling such adversity. I only hope that we can draw upon their strength should such calamity strike us.