“We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world….”
“The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.” Howard Zinn
Today, February 20, is World Day of Social Justice as declared by the General Assembly of the United Nations. “The General Assembly Recognizes that social development and social justice are indispensable for the achievement and maintenance of peace and security within and among nations and that, in turn, social development and social justice cannot be attained in the absence of peace and security or in the absence of respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms.” Each year, different aspects of social justice are addressed. beginning in 2009 with poverty and hunger.
On a more individual level, today, February 20 is also the day that the group known as 1000Speak are posting on the topic of compassion. The idea of 1000Speak is to have a thousand people (or more!) writing on compassion, sharing their stories, their thoughts, and their acts of compassion with the idea of creating a ripple effect. The idea was formed in January, and in less than two weeks over a thousand writers signed up.
I wrote a post on compassion that focused on how I struggle to negotiate the fine line between fear and action, in helping others and acting but at the same time not taking on more than I can reasonably handle. This line has to be negotiated each time the opportunity to act is recognized, sometimes lightning fast. It’s a calculation on risk and the short and long term implications, even if just for that split-second before a choice is made. We have to each navigate our own way towards the world we want to live in, hopefully with compassion, honesty, and consideration for others.
I think that is where the possibilities in life are: in the negotiation we do each day, on the edge of action and on that precipice of hope and fear. And so long as I can negotiate that line and take some sort of action, however small, then I feel I’m on the right track.
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