End of Innocents

*Posted by Kirk Spencer

End of InnocentsWe entertain ourselves with Halloweens faux fear and almost never notice what is truly fearful. For instance, according to my recent issue of National Geographic, when a lion takes over another lions pride it immediately kills the cubs. No matter how cute and cuddly they may be, instinct has taught the victorious lion these cubs will soon become strong and youthful killers themselves. Killing cubs is the amoral imperative of the survival of the most malicious. You can hear it in the scraping gravel of the lions roar. You can see it in their empty eyes. Such wildness bled through the thin veneer of our civilization late last summer. Images emerged showing Syrian children sleeping together on the floor, in row after row. We were aghast and our self-imposed innocence (or ignorance) was endedfor a while. (The real horror is that this killing of cubs is happening in almost every urban center in civilized countries around the world, though the children are smaller and more innocent and their remains are not treated with respect, as in Syria.)

It reminded us that there is a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour and its not just the Devil on the outside. It is the principle of evolution, of survival, of conquest. It is the principle of power and politics, of fear and dependency, of forced loyalty. It is the devil on the inside. In the amorality of violent conflict, there is a certain expediency in the ending of innocentsand for the same leonesque reasons. This is the economy of battlefield: When the battle is over, and all the enemy, of fighting age, have been killed in battle or slaughtered en-mass afterward, the victors have ten years before they will have to fight that enemy again. For it takes time for children to grow into killers. However, if the children of the enemy are killed too, that adds another ten yearstime to literally raise an army. It is a human pride of lions in which hope is dashed along with the innocents. It is a wilderness without Christ. With Christ we find, that even when the lions roar, there is always a baby hidden in a basket or carried into Egypt. And finally, on the cross, Innocence provided a way to shut the lions mouthboth lionsthe one that roams outside of us and the rampant lion inside of us.

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