It was not unlike the other locations in Japan that I had visited – in that the people seemed to move in concerted purpose.
As I stared out the window of the bus that was shuttling me to the A-Bomb site in Hiroshima – the vibrant bustle of the city ran contrary to the events that had transpired there 74 years prior – where one of most horrific events in human history took place.
It was still a bit surreal – to be in a place that I had read about in the World Book encyclopedias when I was growing up.
Hiroshima is one of only two locations where nuclear weapons have been used in human warfare – the other being Nagasaki, Japan.
When the bomb detonated over the city – the explosion wiped out approximately 8 square miles of the the city – there were 80,000 people that died immediately as temperatures in the heart of the blast reached several million degrees – with thousands more perishing from the subsequent radiation exposure.
I remember reading about the heat of the explosion changing the color of surfaces that absorbed the blast – leaving shadows of people who were vaporized in the blast – seared into the ground as a testament that they once existed.
When departed the bus – I made a beeline to Peace Memorial to view the only building remaining that withstood the explosion in the still standing in the hypo-center of the blast.
It got me thinking…
About the most consistent trait about humanity…
Man’s inhumanity towards man.
And how placing fealty in things that don’t allow us to evolve is nothing short of a betrayal of our humanity and it was the realization that many people could care less that shook me to the core.
My active meditation was shattered near the Peace Bell, where I witnessed a diminutive man, probably all of 5’4 pulling back the bell and using all of his body weight to strike it with an oppressive amount of force, repeatedly.
He did this despite a sign on the site asking that the bell be handled with care – it low key pissed me off and I had to bite my tongue.
He paid no regard to letting the vibrations subside and I watched him in stoic disbelief. When our eyes met – he had this smile on his face that was equal parts goofy and maniacal and I stood there arms folded while glowering at him until he walked away.
See my previous rule in Part I – don’t be an asshole in a foreign land, if you can help it.
But, I saw this man as indicative of this disregard that we accord the other people that we share the planet with – this galling statistic of Americans spending nearly 8 times more on defense than on education speaking volumes.
It is our haughtiness blinding us to the lessons of history that cry out to be heard.
Next up… Part IV – the Nishiki Food Market!
Copyright © 2019 ShunPwrites. All Rights Reserved