I’m a huge fan of documentaries and foreign films and I’m always asking people to recommend some to me. One of my Twitter followers, Dr. Goddess, suggested I watch Pray the Devil Back to Hell. Last night I had the pleasure of watching this film and I must thank her for putting me on to it.
Since I want people to watch it I wont ruin it with too many details but I will share the synopsis. The film documents the story of the Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace and their efforts to end the civil war in Liberia. Not only were they successful but their efforts resulted in the first female president to be elected in an African nation.
There are so many lessons to be learned from this movie. The Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace consisted of both Christian and Muslim women yet despite their religious differences they were able to mobilize and create a very powerful movement. Their courage in face of the atrocities they experienced is truly a humbling thing to watch. I’m amazed at what they accomplished and as Dr. Goddess said “And THAT is a movement, btw… real change…”
The biggest lesson I took away from this film is forgiveness. In order for these women to push the agenda they were fighting for they had to forgive the very men that had murdered their families, raped, tortured, and stolen from them. For these women, the promise of peace was more important than vengeance against the groups that destroyed their country. That is extremely powerful. It makes me think of all my grievances against others as petty and small when compared to the suffering these women were forced to endure. I figure that if a person can forgive the people who murdered their family or a woman can forgive her rapist then I can forgive the people who have hurt me. As Buddhism teaches, the biggest freedom is letting go.