Today’s Positive Adjective:
Munificent: very liberal in giving or bestowing, lavish
I watch the event unfold, horrified. Sickened by the sight, my stomach churns, yet I cannot look away. I wonder why? Science tells the reaction is hard-wired into our amygdala. It is part of our survival instinct. We search for information, attempting to decide if we are in danger. Do we need to trigger our fight-or-flight response?
When the event happens half-way around the world, why do we still gawk? Scientists have conducted studies to help us understand. They say we continue to stare to face our fears. Knowing our lives are not at risk, we can safely confront intense emotions. We contemplate what we might do in a similar situation. Would we be the victim? The hero? Could we endure the pain? Would we have the strength to recover?
Play the scene in our head, we fabricate different scenarios, grasping for control in an uncontrollable world. We imagine various outcomes. We experience relief when things turn out better than we expect, and it prepares us when the worst takes place. Disaster evokes our empathy and compels action.
And something beautiful happens. Munificent tributes, donations, support, outpourings of love and compassion we believe will help others recover. We might only be observers of an event, but we can offer comfort, and spark hope.
*** I had a slightly different version for my chosen word, Munificent. Yesterday’s fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, the bravery of the firefighters, individual efforts to rescue priceless artifacts and relics, and the pledges of millions of dollars for its restoration inspired me to alter the story.
Vive le cathédrale Notre Dame.
Keep on writing.
Jo Hawk The Writer