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Holding the Hand of God

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It is with dismay that one reads the pledge of President Obama to "degrade and destroy'' the Islamic State. He has said that the militant group's latest beheading of a U.S. journalist will only serve to galvanize those seeking to punish the militants.

When President Obama was first elected in Nov 2008, there was great expectation throughout the world that at last here is somebody who by his fresh people-oriented approach to politics, would transform not just the USA but the entire world. It was the same air of optimism that led to him being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009.

However after 5 years we find that we are dismayed by his speech pledging to counter the Islamic State. There is nothing wrong in his declaration that 'we will not be intimidated'. But what it portends is only a further cycle of getting involved in a war against 'evil' that is going on repeatedly in the gulf region.

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A great man said that 'We are playing into the hands of evil because we refuse to hold the hand of God'. Exactly this is happening in the gulf region as well as elsewhere, where cycles of violence keep repeating. What is the meaning of holding the hand of 'God'? It is simply having faith in God as the ultimate patron of the world, having faith that he takes care of everything including the task of correcting grievous sinners.

It means becoming defensive when one is under attack for unjust reasons and hope that God will teach in His own subtle way that those who destroy peace have to face the consequences. One still hopes that President Obama would have his own unique way of dealing with the several world crises that befits the promise he held forth 5 years back.

The USA should immediately give up the position of patron of the world because it is God who is the ultimate patron of the world. A radical proposition, but only 'thinking' along these lines can peace be ensured in the world. The founding fathers of USA declared -- 'In God we Trust'. It is time that USA puts these words into practice seriously. It should hold the hand of God steadfastly.

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Vijayaraghavan Padmanabhan is 59 years old, Physician by occupation, married and has two children. Former Professor of Medicine, Madras Medical College. Based in Chennai, India. His interests include Spirituality, Politics and Economics.

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