Thursday, November 27, 2014

Indifference to Pain

College entrance  exams for 2015 have ended, and the same lies continue to circulate within society. The Desk Columnist of the Catholic Times expresses his strong opinion on the situation. "Those who have learned what the text book teaches have no difficulty with the exams," and  similar words, make little of the results of the exams. From November to the  beginning of the new school year in Feb. we will have more than 200  young people kill themselves. If family members are included we have over two suicides each day.

All are faced with few or many exams during life, but the college entrance exams are uniquely different for it will determine the life of the family for years to come. Results determine the price tag for the individual given by society. Scholars in the field see this as an evil,  making for a society of academic cliques.

Some see the problem as a weak disposition of the young people, others see it as a rite of passage that exists in all cultures, and we should not be too sentimental about the situation. The loss of so many young lives, and what we need to do is not a problem easily solved.

Suppose, he says, that the  number of students died because of Ebola or SARS  what would happen?  The government official responsible would have to resign,  and the president would be apologizing to the citizens with head lowered, and  measures to remedy the situation would shortly be in place. Why is it that the adults  do not look into the situation? But instead like parrots repeat: "they only need to study the text books...."

Christians along with the president and the ministers in education are disinterested spectators: a really strange society in which we live. All seems hunky-dory, and nobody wants to  ask the right questions.

Young students  are weak  living in a vertical and authoritarian society. They do not vote which is another reason for the lack of interest of the older generation. This lack of interest in the young is also shown in the churches where we have a large number of students no longer seen in the pews. Our response should be to approach them, listen to them, and feel with them.

One of humanities great gifts is the ability to sympathize with those who are sick or hurting: the capability of empathizing with others and to act. Jesus is our example; he was sent by the Father to be with us and he showed  this feeling for others by his healing. His empathy for others brought about the healing.

One of the great weapons that we have as Christians is the grace to sympathize with others in their hurt. More important than being number one is to relate with others. We need to become more sensitive to the hurts of others, and to develop this part of our personality. This seed was put into the hearts of the followers of Jesus, and this seed for love needs to find expression in our lives.