“Odd Phenomenon” by Eugene Peterson on April 15


Eugene Peterson‘s words below were written in a book called Living the Message, 365 excerpts, one for each day of the year. Though the entry for April 15 was not written in response to the Boston Marathon bombings, the words are hauntingly fitting for this terrible day.

[Life lived badly, inanely] has produced an odd phenomenon: individuals who live trivial lives and then engage in evil acts in order to establish significance for themselves. Assassins and hijackers attempt the gigantic leap from obscurity to fame by killing a prominent person or endangering the lives of a plane full of passengers. Often they are successful. The mass media report their words and display their actions. Writers vie with one another in analyzing their motives and providing psychological profiles on them. No other culture has been as eager to reward nonsense or wickedness.

Suggested audio: Diane Rehm Show for April 16