I know that atrocities against humanity happen all the time around the world. Yet there is a difference between intellectual knowledge and emotional knowledge.

The horror of the bombing at the Boston Marathon hits me on an emotional level. These are my friends, my colleagues, my world. And so the sheer cruel insanity of such an act jars me deeply, while remaining beyond my understanding — I find it incomprehensible.

There might be a political element here, yet what sort of political agenda could be effectively advanced by the deliberate killing and maiming of children?

This coming Saturday I will be traveling up to Boston, where I will see many friends and colleagues. I’m sure the topic of the bombing will come up. Yet despite of the freshness of that horror, we will not let it define us.

This is the one victory we can always claim against the purveyors of death. Their actions inevitably lead to nothingness. Whereas even in the face of terrible sadness and loss, we will continue to find ways to celebrate each other — and this life, in all of its infinite joy and possibility.

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