Oh My Ghandi! It Seems So Simple.
What is it about the world that you don’t like? There are many issues to choose from. For instance: poverty; human rights; religion; pollution; war; politics; crime; etc. It seems impossible for one person to make a difference in any of these areas. It would take a collective of people to end world hunger; slavery; global warming; again, etc. Let’s dwell on that. It would take a collective of people… Who are those people? Someone else? But not you, right? As the wise Ghandi suggested:
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
If everyone who wants to see a more peaceful world contributed to a collective mind by practicing love and compassion, the entire planet would feel a heightened sense of peace. When one person says no to plastic shopping bags and one-time-use water bottles, the world experiences just a little less pollution. One vegetarian saves the lives of several animals. When two people carpool together, there is one less car on the highway. When thousands or millions of people contribute to any of these collective thoughts, the world issues become less of a problem. There’s more peace, we have a cleaner planet, a higher respect for animal life, and less traffic! Who doesn’t want all of those things?
What we have to do about the things we don’t like in the world, is offer the change we want to see. We are in control only of our own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. We can’t expect someone else to change anything for us or for the world. It has to come from within each of us. Another side effect of this practice (as if saving the world wasn’t enough), is that you will experience first hand the great things you wanted the world to be. Since you are consciously making decisions that reflect your dreams, you will be in direct contact with the results. If you want peace, and you’re practicing love and compassion, you will experience serenity. When you use reusable tote bags and water canisters, you have less trash to dispose of.
Understanding this valuable lesson is one thing. Applying it in your life is another. Do little things every day that reflect the changes you want to see in the world. The more you do, the more beauty you’ll experience. Recognize that you’re not just one person who can’t make a difference. You’re one person that is part of a collective of people who are making the world a better place to live. Be that hero!