Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Why? Such a small word, but with such big implications.

I guess we've all heard the child who repeatedly ask 'why' to an adult's answer, until eventually the adult feels exasperated and throws their hands up in frustration. There are many things we may want to know the answer to. Like, Why is there pain and suffering in the world? Another question might be, Why would we expect there not to be? Sometimes we have to accept that we'll never know the answer to some of those big 'Why' questions.

When something happens, often knowing why it has happened makes a huge difference. If I am hungry but there is no food, then knowing why helps me to deal with it. If a friend acts out of character and hurts me, knowing why can be the beginning of reconciliation and acceptance. If my car won't start in the morning, although the situation hasn't changed, if I know why then although still not ideal, somehow it makes a little sense.

Questions are good. They force us on to to seek out the truth, and in some circumstances can lead to obtain a greater understanding of a situation/person we thought we had grasped, but had only partly known.

So much confusion, heartache and problems could be avoided in this world if we only took the time to sit down together and work out why. Why did we fall out? Why did I do or say that? Why did things happen that way?

At the centre of the word why sits an 'h'. That should stand for honesty. But there comes the rub. Sometimes it is very hard to ask and answer why with honesty.

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