February 2011 Archives
This picture, which I believe to be of my great-great grandmother and great-great aunts in Krakow, Poland, illustrates why we must care about genocide and crimes against humanity, wherever they occur. These beautiful beings were killed in the Nazi genocide against the Jews. Look at the faces of these innocent people and remember that they were killed simply because they were Jewish. These are people just like ourselves whose lives were brutally cut short.
Did they die in vain? Genocides and terrible crimes against humanity have continued--in recent times in Bosnia, in Rwanda, in Sri Lanka. And today innocent and courageous protesters are being gunned down and shelled in Libya and tortured in Iranian prisons. Today's victims of such violent crimes are victims not only of their own regimes but also, as British Prime Minister David Cameron himself admitted today, of choices we in the West have made. We have chosen business interests over morality, stability over human rights, oil over life.
Every time we choose to enrich ourselves at the expense of such crimes, we become poorer as a world. Each time we turn a blind eye to violations of human rights, we normalize atrocity. We must care, and care passionately, for all of us are related, one human family. Look at the faces in the picture and remember. Let them not die in vain. In their name, let us create a world of care for the lives of all.
We are all related.
Desperate about the atrocities in Libya, and the lack of meaningful response from Western democracies, we tried to call the White House comment line, but of course it was closed for President's day. Then we thought of calling the British PM, but by then it would have been after business hours in the UK.
Image by messay.com via Flickr
So we turned to the One who never sleeps and always listens. Chanting OM Tryambakam Yejamahai as we offered ghee into the sacred Vedic homa fire.
We prayed for those who were killed--unarmed peaceful protesters who were shot with automatic weapons or shelled from the air. We prayed for the heartbroken mothers who had lost their children. We prayed for the thousands of wounded. We prayed for the doctors, facing injuries the like of which they had never seen before. We prayed for the soldiers who refused to kill their own people and for those who did kill them. We prayed for the mercenaries, ready to commit any atrocity for a paycheck. We prayed for the Gaddafi family whose souls are burdened with so many crimes against humanity. We called on the only one who would listen, with all our heart and soul.
Led by the amazingly courageous youth of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Iran...May peace break out around our world and may all beings be happy.
How will our relationships look in the Age of Aquarius? How can we cultivate this quality in our present relationships? Hear Ma's insightful talk on the evolution of our relationships.
Image by Leonard John Matthews via Flickr
They marched, they stood, they danced, they sang. They laid down in front of tanks. They shed their blood.They tended to their wounded. They made posters showing the cross and the crescent united. Beaten by riot police, they chanted, " Selemeh! Peace, peace!" They got married in Tahrir square and celebrated their honeymoon in the protest.They processed with Coptic crosses and prayed for the rod of the oppressor to be lifted. Five times a day they entered into contemplative peace as the call to Prayer echoed forth. They made human chains to protect those who knelt in prayer. They touched their foreheads to the asphalt. God is Great! Their non-violent protest lifted the spirits of lovers of peace and justice around the world. We wept for their dead and prayed for their success.
They had no Gandhi, no Martin Luther King, no Nelson Mandela. They had only themselves, the people, young and old, Christian and Muslim, women and men, workers and professionals. And they prevailed. As dawn broke on Saturday, the chanting of Quran rang out, and thousands knelt in prayer to greet a new dawn for Egypt and for the world. May their example of satyagraha, of soul force, inspire oppressed people around the world. May it inspire us all, as the fate of Mother Earth hangs in the balance.