EDITORIAL: Finding solace in beauty

In the wake of terror attacks in Paris and Beirut, many are feeling a sense of helplessness.

In the wake of last week’s terror attacks in Paris and Beirut, many are feeling a sense of helplessness and anger.

Such senseless violence – 129 dead in Paris alone, not counting those killed in the ongoing efforts to identify the perpetrators and hold them accountable – is beyond comprehension.

As we urge open, frank discussions in order to prevent future attacks, we suggest it also makes sense now to reflect on all that is good in the world and those around us.

Fortunately, on the Semiahmoo Peninsula that quest is easily fulfilled, and not just because Christmas is but five weeks away.

We can find it in the thousands of people who routinely give of their time – from mere minutes to countless hours every month – to help others, expecting nothing in return.

They each have their own reason for doing it. For some, it’s a way of returning a kindness that brightened their own lives. For others, it’s because they recognize their own fortune and how easily their lives could have turned out differently.

Others get involved simply because they love it; love being involved in the fabric of their community, contributing to the betterment of their neighbors – and often gaining far more back than they ever expected.

Hope for the world is in people such as White Rock’s Ashley Macdonald, who twice in the past week opened up publicly – first to Peace Arch News, and then to a theatre full of youth, parents and professionals – about her struggles with mental wellness in an effort to ease the same journey for others.

It’s in those who watch over our jewels of the environment, including the Little Campbell River, where thousands of salmon are at this moment returning to spawn; a natural process supported by decades of hard work to restore and maintain the river.

It’s in the legacy of Derek Lucas, whose persistence in wanting to help kids stay healthy and active led to an organization that continues to collect, refurbish and distribute sports equipment to those who would otherwise go without.

These are but a few examples. The bottom line is, goodness is all around us, and we don’t have to look far to find it.

We just have to look.

Fortunately, we also don’t have to do anything momentous to contribute to it. We just have to do something.

Perhaps that is how healing can occur.