I know that there is crime everywhere but I suppose a secret part of my heart hoped that it would not be in Hawaiʻi. Apparently it is. In the Star-Advertiser I read that in a Hawaiʻi Island park vandals poured super-glue into gate locks, poured concrete down toilets near the beach pavilions and broke off sprinkler heads along the walking track. Clearly these are the expressions of souls that are lost and floundering… expressions of hearts not accountable for their actions! It is easy for us to condemn such blatant acts of irresponsibility but are we so different?
Just as the vandals prevented the locks from ever being opened again, some of us prevent healing for others by repeatedly bringing up a past hurt… a sort of vandalism of the heart. Just as the vandals disregarded society’s need for the use of those toilets, some of us make a lifestyle of being late for everything and disregarding the inconvenience that we cause others… a sort of passive-aggressive vandalism. There are degrees of vandalism. Because the Star-Advertiser, the New York Times, or the Washington Post do not report our secret transgressions does not mean that we are free. Just because we are not caught doesn’t mean we aren’t vandals!
Every time we give in to the impulse to vandalize then the universe is damaged by us. If physics is correct that for every action there is a re-action, and if Christ’s warning that everything we neglect to do for others we neglect to do for God, then somewhere down the road there will be a price to pay for indulging the desire to damage or destroy. Our spiritual growth would be better served were we to stop tut-tutting about the vandalism of others in the papers and start looking to the dark impulses of our own hearts.
The reasons for Hawaiʻi’s kapu‘s were because even in Hawaiʻi the human heart still desires to tear down, to desecrate and to sow disorder within human relationships. What a shame it would be to come to the moment of our death, to have lived in Hawaiʻi’s deeply spiritual culture and to suddenly realize that we squandered it all! That realization would truly be hell!