I have, for quite some time, had a growing sense that the world has shifted slightly on its axis.My growing dis-ease with the state of the world has raised in me a number of questions. Few come with easy answers. What can we, collectively, do to make our world more humane? What can I, individually, do to become more humane myself?
Sometimes I feel torn between extremes – the possibility of withdrawing from the tedious, continuous stream of information that suggests there’s no hope anyway and pulling the covers over my head and waiting for the inevitable apocalypse. In other moments, I consider charging full steam ahead into the fray to make my voice heard and to demand accountability. Neither seem like a fit – for me.
So instead, I have landed here — “standing in the place where I live” — doing what I can in my own small, steady way. I have chosen to be engaged in meaningful work that has helped open this path for me, working with compassionate, caring, creative people. And daily, I choose to treat people with whom I come in contact – regardless of race, creed, culture, religion, lifestyle orientation, background or circumstances – with respect and value. It’s not easy work, because there’s no rest – this is a way of being, not a vocation.
I will throw small stones of compassion and empathy into the sea of humanity and hope the ripples of my own effort continue to grow. Will my efforts matter in the end? Will it be enough? I don’t know. But I will continue to do my bit to build a world that once again values all human life. Because I can.
Contributed by Christine Jensen