Updated: Jun 16, 2020
Edrine Ddungu, president of the Interfaith Council of Greater Sacramento:
I would like to convey my message to the faith leaders in what is going on today. But before I do that, we wish to convey our deeply felt condolences to the immediate family of the late George Floyd, for loss of their beloved member of the family. Least to say that we were all overwhelmed at the sudden painful demise of George Floyd we all watched on the TV. His death struck another dark chapter in the history of the African-Americans community as a whole.
However, let us all remember and reminisce he's a likable character as an individual human being. George Floyd was a mentor by default shaped by his own character and enhanced by his upbringing environment of his parents.The family, friends, neighbors, schools, communities, nations, and the world at large have reaped his death, his fruits. We will always remember that George Floyd, as a human being his painful death has touched many souls that are contributing to the wellbeing of humanity. Also, we will always remember that George Floyd was so much loved by his family. And his painful demise has left us all with a lot of question marks, in our law enforcement system of community protection.
At the same time, we have come to terms with the reality at hand, that life has a beginning and an end, but not in this kind of violence by people who are supposed to protect him. However, in between is the fact of quality of life one lives. He gave us his desirable best as a human being. And we hear by experience painful ways of his death as a fact. Thus, in the same spirit without God for giving us, George Floyd.
And so we pray and ask God to give George Floyd eternal peace and to give his family the strength, to move in their next phase of life without George Floyd. As a community of faith, we ask for calmness in cities and wait for justice to take its course, without destroying property and take matters into our own hands. We understand and we feel the painful acts of violence by law enforcement agencies. However, two wrongs will not make it right. But this time we want to see a real change in the system of policing our communities with dignity. As a person, I've experienced a lot of change in my life. I lost my father. My father was murdered too, and it has caused a change in my life. Not only that, even moving from one country to the other, but it also gave me a serious cultural shock, which brought a change in my life.That being said, I'd like to bring this to do you as a community of an ancient philosopher who talked about change. And this philosopher was the ancient Greek philosopher, writer Heraclitus of Ephesus, who lived in the 5th century BC, was responsible for this famous quote. "No one ever steps in the same river, twice."
Philosophers ever since have debated over the meaning of the sentence. But when we get the rest of the quote, the mystery becomes a little clear. He says, "This is because when he steps into the river again, it is not the same river and it is not the same person." Here is the explanation, the water that made up that river a minute before is no longer at the same water when he set foot in it a moment later. And the person who stepped into that water has also changed in a similar fashion.
So Heraclitus believed that the world was in constant motion and the sameness of things mere is an illusion. And yet, the reality of change is probably one of the biggest challenges we deal with as humans. It can cause us to feel out of control or tentative about what the future holds. I suppose we might say that faith is the way we do battle with the inner voices of resistance and panic. When facing the uncertainty of the unknown, it is always a challenge to be afraid of what is around the next corner in life.
And John F. Kennedy quote said at the general meeting, "Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present, are certain to miss the future."So George Floyd's violent death has caused a lot of change for this country right now.
And not only this country, but the whole world. So let us be observant, let us pay attention to what is going on and wait and see what the future holds because this has been so traumatizing for the whole world to see. And this change is going to change us for the rest of our time in this country.