Tested Zen_stones_Midday_by_HollowIchigoBanki

I watched the news on Tuesday on two different channels as I just didn’t understand, I was confused. I consider myself to be a bright individual but even so I could not work out what was happening. I felt I was being tested, as if this was a very difficult puzzle or mental exercise that was just beyond by capacity to reach a conclusion. I truly felt I2c was being tested on a variety of levels but yet my mind would not cease, would not stop, I felt compelled to understand what was occurring. Some who have known me any length of time would consider this a normal state of affairs:

“Jonathan never lets go”

“Jonathan is determined no matter what is in his way”

“Jonathan is stubborn to a point of ridiculousness”

“Jonathan is pig-headed and blinkered”

“Jonathan never gives up”

Are just a few of the recommendations I would get when it comes to trying to reach an outcome or destination, so why should this be any different? As it turned out it wasn’t going to be any different and I spent many, many hours thinking about what was happening to a point of near obsessiveness.

On the news programmes were many stories, which added to my confusion and limited even further my innate need to understand what was happening, to understand what was unfolding in front of me, and at this point I knew I was being tested greater than ever before:

Lost and Confused Signpost


  • ‘Pleb Gate’ was still going on as more evidence occurred to suggest that perhaps the ex-Minister was set up somewhat by the a few serving Police Officers. Channel 4 News spent the majority of their airtime on this one very old story, as if the new revelations were of such importance everyone would want to know their scoop that the key witness who emailed to say he heard/saw the ex-Minister abusing the Downing Street Police was actually another serving Officer and was not even there. OK I understand that this poor guy seems to have been set up and had is career ruined but did this require the majority of the programme and a documentary programme too? Perhaps some would say yes but it added to my confused state – I was being tested;


  • Another item rattled across the screen with the news Presenter being terribly enthusiastic; Lord McAlpine had received apologies and £100,000+ settlements from two TV channels that had reported him being accused of being a paedophile in the ferocity of the Savile mêlée. Again this was important to set the record straight, absolutely and without question the right thing to do but this did not add another piece to the puzzle I was struggling with – I was being tested;


  • Bits and pieces of news washed over me as I became more distracted with my own thoughts and withdrew into my head. I caught bits and pieces such as the price of potatoes was up 40%, bread up 30% over the last year due to the extremely damp year we have had since the Spring; Anglo-Saxon gold was discovered in a field where a previous hoard had been discovered (I did think that this wasn’t new but more of the same hoard they hadn’t discovered); rate of inflation was unchanged at 2.7%; blah, blah, blah, gosh the banality of it all made my head spin – I was being tested;


  • Then I smiled when I heard the irony of the story that unfolded that the National Trust had tried to catch Xmas Tree thieves by putting cameras at the top of their 7ft trees, good idea. However, the thieves stole 7 more trees, including the ones with the cameras on them! I did chuckle a little at this. Even the Warden being interviewed was trying not to smile as the Report tried to make this occurrence as dramatic as possible. Needless to say he was unable to stop me smiling, but still this did not help, if anything it made my problem worse – I was being tested;


  • Then the news item reported that this was the wettest summer and Autumn on record, like we living in the UK didn’t know that already! How on this earth was that news? At this point I really did know that I was being tested, tested not to throw something at the TV;


  • It was reported the Cabinet had given the Queen 60 placemats and the Nation via the Foreign Office had named a huge chunk of the Antarctic Queen Elizabeth Land. Am sure she was thrilled to death to be given several million acres of ice! Oh gosh I was absolutely being tested and more confused than ever;


  • Then I was absolutely shocked to hear extremist Islamic groups such as the Taliban had shot 4 Aid-Workers for administering the Polio Vaccine to children in the Middle East, executed them for being “infidels spreading Westernised ideas”. The warnings went on to say that Westernised levels and types of healthcare were just “an evil plot” and workers spreading such healthcare would be targeted. All these people were doing were saving children, they were not spreading doctrine, they were completely neutral, just putting a couple of drops of Polio Vaccine on the tongues of children to wipe out this crippling disease. I just didn’t understand why they would kill people for doing this, for improving the healthcare of the people these extremists claim to represent. I was utterly confused at this, but that was the problem, this week I had been shaken to my core and utterly, completely, totally confused;


You see as a Father, as a Husband, a Son and a Brother, I had been overwhelmed, as millions of other people, at the events that unfolded in Newtown in America. This singular event, even though there had been four separate events during Obama’s Presidency, had really got to me, perhaps because the victims were so young. I was utterly moved to tears when I heard that 12 Primary School aged girls & 8 boys (all the children aged 6 or 7), plus their 6 teachers, plus the Murder’s Mother, had been killed so brutally, in such a calculated and inhumane way. The tears rolled down my face as I realised how scared these children must have been, and then one particular detail will stay with me for the rest of my life. One of the children was formally from the UK. He was at school with his Special Needs Teacher as he had Autism, and had been found shot, cradled in the arms of his teacher as she was shot too, cradled as they were murdered. In a way I was pleased that his last sensation was that of arms holding him tight in a loving embrace.


My thoughts went out to the families and the victims, there were far more affected than the 27 deaths.  Every Mother, Father, Grandparent, Brothers, Sisters, friends and relatives of  every person killed were also victims of this evil person (I refuse to even acknowledge him by his name, that will go down in history amongst the most infamous we as mammals have ever spawned). In fact I would say that everyone following these beyond tragic events had become a victim of a crime that would not be out of place in The Hague’s Courts along with the list of war crimes being 2pprosecuted. The President was sincere and genuine and the debate about guns will now go on for years and years, I suspect without any real change, especially as there are 300 million Americans and a minimum of 300,000,000 guns in circulation in the USA. The Elders and original draftsmen of the Bill of Rights enshrining the right to bear arms could not have foreseen the desires of such evil in our society. How could they as such events are beyond perception or understanding of all those now affected by this evil. Beyond comprehension, beyond even the imagination of horror writers that evil could kill so many children and by so doing killing their families too – I was being tested! The families of victims grieve near Sandy Hook Elementary School, where a gunman opened fire on school children and staff in Newtown, Connecticut

I couldn’t understand why God, our Lord, would allow such things to occur, to allow Aid Workers and children to be killed, to be robbed of the contribution they may have made as they grew into adults, the potential of each and every one snuffed out like a breeze extinguishing such fragile light of a candle representing each of them. I could not understand how this could happen, how this could be allowed to happen by our Father, our guiding hand, the Arbiter of our morality and Christian values, the rules by which we try to live our lives by, Christianity within each of us. How could our Lord allow this merciless act to unfold and destroy all that was good in this community – my faith was tested to the point of breaking! 2k

And this is when I felt I had been shown some way of understanding, of not allowing my faith to be broken, allowing it to guide me to try to make some sense of this tsunami devastating event. It was an act of pure evil, no other way of looking at it, total putrid evil decimating all it touched. I finally understood, perhaps a little, that evil is simply:

  • The absence of Christian values or similar other religious values;
  • The absence of any morality;
  • The absence of any compassion for one’s fellow human being;
  • The absence of mercy for those more vulnerable than ourselves in some way;
  • And finally and most importantly the absence of love within us as individuals;

Connecticut School Shooting

Combine these and you have evil. The will and ability to harm others, yes, almost certainly created from events in their lives, experiences we can’t imagine – abuse, neglect, extreme punishments, the harshest of conditions to grow up in (or should that read “to survive in”). However, this in no way justifies what has occurred, as others experience such harsh conditions and end up contributing so much positivity to society. This was an evil act by an evil person, and it shows that evil is waiting to take hold of some and enabling them to commit the most cataclysmic of actions, actions that even with the grace of God within me, guiding me, I will never really understand other than to prove evil does exist in some people. The challenge is how do we spot these people before they commit such evil and then what do we do with them. A member of the Hemingway family hangs a Christmas stocking on one of 26 donated Christmas trees for each of victims in shooting near Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut

My tears and my prayers are with each and every one affected by the evil that occurred in Newtown. My God bless and keep you all in His grace. I pray that God now has 26 new Angels to watch over us all. Amen. 2u


Charlotte Bacon, age 6

Daniel Barden, age 7

Olivia Engel, age 6

Josephine Gay, age 7

Ana M Marquez-Greene, age 6

Dylan Hockley, age 6

Madeleine F Hsu, age 6

Catherine V Hubbard, age 6

Chase Kowalski , age 7

Jesse Lewis, age 6

James Mattioli, age 6

Grace McDonnell, age 7

Emilie Parker, age 6

Jack Pinto, age 6

Noah Pozner, age 6

Caroline Previdi, age 6

Jessica Rekos, age 6

Avielle Richman, age 6

Benjamin Wheeler, age 6

Allison N Wyatt, age 6

A man hangs an angel atop a Christmas tree in a growing makeshift memorial for the victims of the December 14 shootings at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Sandy Hook village in Newtown


Rachel Davino, age 29

Dawn Hochsprung, age 47

Anne Marie Murphy, age 52

Lauren Rousseau, age 30

Mary Sherlach, age 56

Victoria Soto, age 27 2q

God bless you all and I will never forget what occurred.


Jonathan Wade

Smiling Cat Ventures and Innovations Group



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