Humanity is in a great amount of danger. Extreme acts of violence and intolerance are taking over the world as we know it. When you watch the news there are hateful acts, ignorance, misunderstanding, violence, frustration and anger. What we are lacking is the ability to try and understand others and what they are going through. We have lost the ability to look at other people and see humans, we look at people and just see conflict and problems. This was a conversation/picture that happened on my Facebook feed and I think it describes the human condition perfectly.
People fear the things they do not understand and do not try to seek answers and understanding. It takes a lot of work to try to understand the new things and it is an effort that some people want to skip over. People just want to be “right,” and not consider other options. This could potentially cause the extinction of humanity.
We need to work on our abilities to walk in other people’s shoes and see ALL people as valuable humans, as hard as it is sometimes. Right now, in the United States, we have a humanitarian crisis involving children fleeing unsafe conditions in Central America. I have noticed an increase in hateful speech and intolerance due to this. Is it a huge financial burden? 100%, but they are innocent children who had no choice. They are also human beings that have seen and experienced things people in the United States are so fortunate to have never experienced. Another argument I have been hearing is that the United States has enough problems as it is and that we cannot save the world. This is all very true, but I strongly feel that if each person dedicated their time to something they found important whether it be global issues, homelessness in the U.S., Veteran’s, etc. we could very feasibly start to solve A LOT of problems.
I have started following the brilliant young woman Malala Yousafazi who is fighting for girls’ and women’s rights all over the world. She is 17 years old and has accomplished far more than most people. She sees a problem and she fights to change it. She sees adversaries as people she would like to educate on issues, not as enemies. She uses her intellect and words to fight, not weapons and violence. She believes education is the only way to peace and I believe she is correct.
The point of this post is not to point out how terrible humans are, it is to say that if we want to we can fix problems with a little compassion and understanding if we really want to. We need to take care of each other if we hope to keep the human race alive. We need less destruction of people, places, and animals and more creation of beauty, art, humanitarian efforts, and conservation efforts. Whatever you are passionate about, educate yourself about it and bring about positive change in the world. Educate yourself about everything…we are humans with the incredible ability to learn and reason, use it for good. Ask questions, be curious, be passionate, be compassionate. I will leave you with a quote from a gentleman I spoke with while I was volunteering the other day:
“While it’s important to talk about diversity, it’s something we focus on too much. We need to encourage curiosity. People need to be curious about other cultures and religions, they need to ask questions so that they can understand others before making inaccurate assumptions. If we encourage curiosity we might find we all aren’t that different after all.”