If we must choose

between civilization and barbarity

we must choose civilization.

But only if the injustices and

atrocities of civilization

do not exceed those of barbarism.


If we must choose identity

between eco and ego

we must choose eco and celebrate

the global planting of trees and

enacting an end to

forced mass extinctions.


If we must choose

between maturity and contemporary normalcy

we must choose maturity.

Maturity implies moral character.

Moral character implies responsibility the

cultivation of the ability to respond

appropriately to the genuine needs of reality.


Cultivation implies culture-making

and culture is manifested through inspirational

intentions craft and discipline.  Maturity

requires accurate perception patience and

above all the discipline of

appropriate thinking speech and appropriate action honoring

the diversity of life

honoring life in balance.

And establishing and maintaining dignity

as a universal touchstone

of the human condition.

If we must choose

between peace and war

we must grow up learning

to choose peace.  Because peace

implies dialogue in

explorations of possibilities for decency

of mutual recognition and practical alternatives

to violence terror and oppression.

But war is organized murder

nothing but mayhem and murder.  War is a

victory for nobody and nothing except a

sadism of suffering blood-profiteers and death.


If we must choose

between the blessing way of

the spirit warrior and that of business

as usual we must choose the pathfinder’s journey.

And strive to share light with

those entrapped in sub-worlds of shadows

those who feed on the fast

foods of shallow obesity on false values and confusion.


If we must choose

between reason and madness

and reason itself is mad

we must reject both the sterility

of reason and the conflagration of madness.

We must make choices rather

for the heart of lovingkindness.  We

must choose instead

the compassion of inclusion

and new commensality.


If we must choose

between honesty and lies

we must choose forever in the

moment honesty.  Nothing good comes out of

lying. Nothing gets going or ever better

if honesty is absent.  If we are not

truthful before and when facing one another.


If we must choose

between hearing and deafness

put down your weapons

be vulnerable and listen.

If we must choose

between vision and blindness

open your eyes

invite depth-perception and see.


If you should ever be asked to

choose between love and hate

do not acquiesce to the false juxtaposition.

Love was not initially nor is love eternally

opposed by hatred rather

opposed by apprehension by fear.  And

suspicions and the estrangements of

disappointment the sins of our

faces falling.


Whenever you decide something big

bearing on your life or on the lives of others

do not make decision out of fear.  Fear is darkness.

Dark imaginings infect

soul’s perceptions of realties of

connectivity of relationships.  Fear is a wall.

Walls cast shadows.  Fear also

is a hole to hide in to slink into.  There behind

fear hatred gestates nightmare scenarios dire and

grim inhuman stirrings conspiratorial

tempests leading to corruption eruptions of crime.


Choose love when you make choices.

Love is not without challenges.

But love does facilitate a source of

wealth of warmth that

without love would never emerge

reaching into the light of day.  To touch us here.


Choices with choices connect.

And choices you make give

content to identity.


David Sparenberg is a world citizen, environmental & peace advocate & activist, actor, poet-playwright, storyteller, teacher and author.



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