The tragedy of the Germanwings plane disaster is an incredibly sad experience for everyone who has any association with the innocent parties and also those who knew the clearly mentally ill co-pilot.
As a psychologist I see two aspects of this tragedy that deserves consideration.
The first and easiest is a rethink of the security that saw the sane pilot locked out of the cockpit. I am sure this will be something that aviation experts will investigate and address.
However, the second aspect is the appalling fallout to those who have lost loved ones and the millions of ordinary people who will be emotionally touched by these events.
The people who have lost loved ones and the innocent family of the co-pilot are destined to carry a burden of grief for the rest of their lives. Professional help can be a very important coping technique along the way.
Reflecting on the joy and love brought into our lives by those people who have died so unnecessarily and awfully in this tragedy, whilst difficult in these early days of grieving, can be a very helpful healing technique.
Contemplating and acting on what the victims of this tragedy would wish for those left behind can be another source of paradoxical comfort.
Witch hunts, ruminations, and anger, whilst reasonable and understandable, are very unlikely to be part of an effective healing process.
The people who died had no choice in the manner in which their lives ended. Those left behind have the opportunity to make a deliberate choice to honour those who died by living the richest, fullest and most meaningful life they can.