“We Do Not Inherit the Earth from Our Ancestors; We Borrow It from Our Children.” Chief Seattle
“And don’t criticize what you can’t understand, your sons and your daughters are beyond your command, your old road is rapidly aging, please get outta’ the new one if you can’t lend your hand, For the time they are a-changin'” Bob Dylan
There comes a time in life where wisdom dictates to stop seeking to serve self and to serve others.
I remember every aspect of my life very distinctly. I fully recall the stupidity and invulnerability of eighteen. I recall the innocence of being a small child. Perhaps after my mental illness, my life got hijacked from the normal, but I can recognize the different aspects. I am at a point where I am old enough to understand death, yet young enough to do something to affect the world.
So I turn my efforts toward what I can do to help those who are coming into age now, even to the unborn. I see a world full of problems and I feel shame that this is the best we can do. We are passing on a world in the decline. Endless war, reckless destruction of the environment, general cruelty and inhumanity, rampant greed and materialism. In the United States, our college graduates cannot find a well-paying job and are being crushed by the debt of their student loans. Meanwhile, by the well orchestrated evil genius of think tank policies, the inner city is kept in perpetual poverty and oppression. After all, if there were no poor people who would become slave labor for our prisons and who would fight Wall Street’s wars?
Example is, of course, the strong teacher. “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi. The Bible says to remove the beam from your own eye and you will see clearly to remove the mote from your brother’s eye. Keep on loving, keep on caring, keep on working, keep on trying, keep on helping, keep on serving, keep on spreading the good news, keep on organizing, keep on agitating, keep on resisting, keep on keeping on.
Every journey needs a vision of where we are headed. So here is my vision. Not only a world without war but a world without weapons and armies posing a constant peril to true peace. A world where hunger will be abolished. A world of opportunity where any individual has a chance to be what they desire if they put their mind to it and work hard. A world full of compassion where the value of a human being is more precious than a lump of gold. I think that is sufficient for a start. Actually, I have very detailed plans but the prohibition of space does not allow me to expound. But to put it simply it would be a world where governing jurisdictions overlap so there would be multiple avenues to obtain justice.
Consumerism is a sickness that is destroying the United States. My wife Sylvia and I, when she was healthy, like to go around town to garage sales. I would buy books to read and she enjoyed looking at the stuff. She was thrilled to find a great bargain and I’d talk to people. We’d go to these estate sales and see houses loaded up with stuff, some of it just crap. It struck me that people worked so hard to afford these big houses, to fill it up with crap, only to die and lose it all. Seems totally pointless to me, living for this world. We are going to leave the world just how we came in and that is empty-handed.
I acknowledge that there is a season to pursue material things. I mean they can be very useful in living. But there is a point where one has to say, I got enough, I have all that I need. At that moment of epiphany one should emancipate self from this carnal world to a spiritual walk.
Helping others is always an excellent policy. What I am talking about is a total abandonment of wanting anything more for self. Instead in everything, one does the goal is to enrich others, to be a blessing to the world.
Here is a book called “Poet to the Poor, Poems of Hope for the Bottom One Percent.” I invite you to check it out. If you are not a student of change it will introduce you to people and events that you may be totally ignorant of. In the movement,there is a long and illustrious history. “Poet to the Poor” explores that history. https://amzn.to/2KJ508F
Photos by Graham Crumb,