People agree that war is terrible, but no one thinks it will stop entirely. War has certain connotations associated with it depending on those who view it. To the perpetrators, context matters. Who is in the picture? What side caused suffering? Who is innocent? All of these questions matter to those actively engaged in war, but to those who have the privilege to merely view war, it is “generic.” It does not matter what side inflicted what pain; only the carnage matters. But violence is not enough to condemn war. Many people believe that violence is justified in some situations.
Context matters to those engaged in war, but to the privileged onlookers war is generic, violent, and sometimes justified.
Something about bodily mutilation attracts people. The body is beautiful and to see it violated evokes a “prurient” response. Today this attraction to pain evokes guilt, but in a religious sense pain and sacrifice can lead to exaltation. The feeling of safety can breed indifference to others’ pain but so can overwhelming fear. The feeling of helplessness compounds this indifference.
While bodily mutilation attracts people, they can become indifferent to it because they are either too far removed from it or too close to it.
To be surprised that violence happens every time one encounters it is to be morally immature. We must accept that violence happens and forget specific grievances in order to reconcile. There is nothing wrong with looking at provoking images and merely thinking on them.
We must accept the violence within our world and not be ashamed to think on it.