Am I wrong to suspect that grief, the genuine and loud experience and expression of total strickenness and sorrow, is almost totally unacceptable today, both in and outside the church?
And correspondingly, whether or not we reject “all violence” on Christian principles, I wonder if the violence irrupting from grief, from anguish is for us the most unspeakable and reproachable violence. Violence for the sake of security, justice, or retribution, or that eminently understandable violence, the violence of order and reasonable process, perhaps these we might understand but the violence that springs from: ” By the rivers of Babylon we sit down and weep . . . How blessed will be the the one who grabs your babies and smashes them on a rock!” — this violence, the irrational violence of mothers, daughters, of sons, fathers, and friends, we shrink back from in disgust, in visceral fear. And in this shrinking, do we not turn our back on any possibility of speaking truth? I think so.