Last Word

The image of hands throughout the "I Can't Stop Looking at the Sky" project represents our choices. In this particular song, unity, peace and non-violence are the ideals put forth. But talk is cheap. Action… not so much.

One of the broader themes in the project is childhood and how, as adults, we become jaded and lose that optimism we had as children. That's what the children in this song represent—all that is beautiful, righteous and possible.

Another theme weaving it's way through the project is the idea of paradox. So much in life boils down to this concept, or at least the idea that there are very rarely simple answers. There are always two sides to every issue. I think most mature people, deep down, know this, but constantly living it, is not so easy. Living it requires restraint, empathy and respect.

In contrast to the idea of unity, peace and non-violence, is what a friend once told me—that is, when you're cornered by a rabid dog, you have no choice but to shoot it. While I believe this to be true, I also believe in the long run, only love can conquer hate (as the man said). Only love will bring about real and lasting progress and move civilization forward. So where does all of this leave us at this moment?

One thing we can do is be kind and generous to those around us. As often as we fail to do this, it is the easiest of our tasks. Harder, is to love those we don't know—perfect strangers. Harder still, is to love those with whom we adamantly disagree.

In no way, am I suggesting we reach out with kindness to those who wish to take our lives from us. But I do believe that while we defend ourselves and bring to justice those who've killed the innocent, we can redouble our efforts to love or at least respect all those among us who are different from us. Especially those who are living in other cultures somewhere else in the world. It's difficult to fully comprehend that all of us are connected when such cultural differences and physical distances exist between us. But understand, we must.