Archive for the ‘Children’ Category

The Need for Nervousness

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

 
I never thought I’d do improvisational comedy. It was one of those things in life that I felt I couldn’t do; I closed the door on that one. (more…)

Mother Sets Fire to Daughter’s Gloating Rapist

Sunday, June 26th, 2011

A Spanish mother has taken revenge on the man who raped her 13-year-old daughter at knife point by dousing him in gasoline and setting him on fire. He died of his injuries eleven days later in hospital.
(more…)

What is the worth of a woman?

Monday, September 20th, 2010

Image by Evil Cheese Scientist via Flickr

What, I ask you, is the worth of a woman?

Can it be measured against the force of a clock,
stuck into a wall,
ticking against time and perceived accomplishment?

Is it to be given compliments
as to the shape of a body or a countenance that draws glances?

Or is it the longer view,
the sound of her voice
without regard to physicality?

Is it two half moons
she wakes with

each day beneath her chin; yet,

above the mid-point of life?

Is the worth of a woman
to disregard herself?
To take herself lightly
in pieces
in jokes
in half smiles?

Decorum.  How charming.

Or is her weight
something
that can not measured
in present time?

Not the
the deprecation
of her soul nor diminishment of the purity of her heart

Rather,

The unbidden, unguarded

Pure moments

In whispers

Where her soul drops as golden tears upon the ones she loves

Related Articles

Shelley helping the kids, the innocents, in India

Sunday, January 25th, 2009

Many of you may have read Shelley Seale’s article, posted a few days ago here, The Weight of Silence….

Now maybe you may take a moment and watch her video on these utterly beautiful innocent souls, and if you do, maybe you will pass it on and on, and stop at her site and buy her book.

It starts now.

Shelly & her kids

The Weight of Silence:Invisible Children of India

Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Ms. Shelley Seale, a humanitarian and now guest blogger, shares with us a moving piece on the price and plight of innocence. It is a piece born from the heart. As you approach the end of Ms. Seale’s narrative, she also graciously shares with us general statistics on the day to day societal warfare waged knowingly against children. May peace be with you as you share your moments with Ms. Seale and pass on her moving piece, information and website to all that you know.

With no further introduction…

“The plane started its final descent, and my heart began to race. It was March of 2005, and I had been traveling halfway around the world for nearly two days to volunteer in an orphanage in northeast India, with the Austin-based nonprofit The Miracle Foundation. I had been sponsoring a child who lived there but had never visited the country before, and my stomach tightened as the plane touched down and I waited impatiently for the exit doors to open.

I had never expected to be in India. It wasn’t the exotic beauty that had drawn me. It wasn’t the storied, ancient history of the country or its rich and varied culture. It was not the colors or the spices or the sounds or the spirituality of the place. India is all of these things, to be sure; but they were not what pulled me close, made the place somehow a part of my soul before I had even arrived.
It was the children.

They are everywhere. They fill the streets, the railway stations, the shanty villages. Some scrounge through trash for newspapers, rags or anything they can sell at traffic intersections. Others, often as young as two or three years old, beg. Many of them are homeless, overflowing the orphanages and other institutional homes to live on the streets. Amidst the growing prosperity of India, there is an entire generation of parentless children growing up, often forced into child labor and prostitution – more than twenty-five million in all. They are invisible children, their plight virtually unnoticed by the world, their voices silenced.

And in the small town outside Cuttack, a hundred miles south of Calcutta, one man named Damodar Sahoo had dedicated his life to providing some sort of family for one hundred of these children, assisted by donations and volunteers from the United States. I had no way of knowing just how much they would change my life.
Eleven dazed Americans emerged into piercing sunlight and walked across the tarmac to the small terminal. As we entered Caroline Boudreaux, founder of The Miracle Foundation, was immediately spotted by Damodar – known to all simply as “Papa.” He pulled Caroline into a hug across the metal bars separating the passengers from those waiting for them. He lifted his large, thick 1980s style glasses from the bridge of his nose and dabbed at his eyes with a handkerchief, overcome with joy at seeing his American “daughter” again and the group she had brought along to visit the children he cared for. Alongside him were his wife, two women who worked at the orphanage, and three of the children. As we showed our passports and entered the gate, one by one, the little girls handed us each a bouquet of flowers, kissing their fingers and bending down to touch our feet in a blessing.

The visitors and our luggage were crammed into vehicles and we zoomed down the main road, which was dirt peppered with potholes, narrowly missing bicycles, pedestrians, cows and rickshaws. India was everything I had imagined it would be – only more so. More colors, more noises, more smells, more people, more everything. It was an assault on all the senses at once: The throngs of people, the muddy dirt roads, the constant beep-beep of the horns. The deteriorating buildings, the ragged street vendors, the ramshackle homes for which hut was too grandiose a term. The wonderful and the abject co-existed side by side, for the most part peacefully. There was what everyone, myself included, expected – poverty, ugliness, despair, filth.

But there was also much beauty, in the midst of it all. The warmth and shyness of the people, the colorful saris, the upscale shops next to the vendors, the swaying trees surrounding it all. I was enchanted by a brief glimpse into an ornate Hindu temple, candles glowing and people bowing their heads to the ground in prayer. Beauty was not its own thing to be separated out, sanitized, and kept apart for its own sake. The true measure of beauty lay in its imperfections; to see it, one must embrace it all. India immediately wrapped itself around me and refused to let go.

And in the children beauty seemed to come alive, almost making me believe it was a living entity I could capture in my hands.
Without warning, we lurched around a village corner and turned into the orphanage entrance. In a second the cars had stopped and a hundred children lined around in a semi-circle, waving and chanting "welcome" over and over. I opened the car door and they were all around me, touching my feet in blessing. The children were shy at first, obviously excited but reticent. One little girl, about seven years old, summoned her courage and touched my arm, then grasped my hand. "Hello," she said softly, looking up at me and just as quickly dropping her eyes, giggling. As soon as she did this, the crowd of surrounding children shed their reserve and instantly moved in closer, putting their hands out for me to shake. There was a never-ending supply of hands raised in front of me and I shook them over and over.
I was overwhelmed and unsure what to do, blindly following behind Papa and Caroline as they moved into the ashram. It was almost surreal, and happening so quickly. I didn’t have time to look around or get any sense of where I was in the darkness. There were just the children, all around, and my feet moving forward until we arrived in a courtyard. The children, as one, left our sides and began climbing a staircase in an orderly fashion. We followed with the dozen staff members, removing our shoes at the top of the stairs and entering the prayer room.

The children were already lined up and sitting on rugs on the floor, boys on one side and girls on the other, ages progressively going up toward the back with older kids sitting behind younger. I was handed a small bouquet of red roses and marigolds, and led to a spot on the mats. At the front of the room was an altar holding flowers, small trinkets of devotion, a picture of the guru Sai Baba and a statue of Vishnu, an ancient Hindu god. Tacked to the walls on all sides were pictures of other Hindu gods – Ganesh and Krishna – as well as Jesus, Mary, Mother Theresa and Mohammed. Ceiling fans whirred overhead to stir up the warm air. A staff member lit incense at the altar while another blew a horn softly. The children sat up straighter and ceased any fidgeting or whispering.

Then the prayers began. It started with a simple chant: "Om….om..," the small voices resonating deeply. The chanting gave way to a song, a hundred sweet voices dancing in the air and filling the room. Beside me on the rug sat one of the smallest girls, with glossy black curls and deep dimples. She was sitting lotus-style with her middle fingers and thumbs pressed together on the knees of her yellow and green flowered dress, eyes squinted tightly shut in concentration. Her strong, clear singing distinctly carried to my ears apart from the others. The voice of this three year old rising so pure and true was one of the most powerful sounds I had ever heard.

Soon the singing faded into silence and Papa prayed. He said there were many religions represented and respected in the ashram. “Here, there are Hindus, Christians, Buddhists and Muslims. We pray,” Papa said, “to God and Allah and Jesus and Mohammed. The meaning of life is to love all. The purpose of life is to serve all.”

It was a simple prayer, reminding me that life need not be complicated unless we made it so. A soothing peace palpable in the air filled me, and I breathed out deeply. The past forty hours of travel and little sleep fell away as if they were nothing. There seemed no other world outside this place. As Papa spoke my eyes traveled over the faces all around me. I wondered when each of them had stopped wanting to go home, or if they ever had. As much of a loving community as the ashram seemed, it was not the family that most of the children had once known, distant and ghostly memories for the most part.

Home is a fragile concept – far more delicate than those of us who have always had one can imagine. When a person no longer has a home, when his family is taken from him and he is deprived of everything that was home, then after a while wherever he is becomes home. Slowly, the pieces of memory fade, until this strange new place is not strange anymore; it becomes harder to recall the past life, a long ago family, until one day he realizes he is home.

Post Script: Excerpts provided by Ms. Seal

What to know:
More than 25 million Indian children currently live without homes or families – in orphanages or on the streets, where they are extremely vulnerable to abuse, disease, and being trafficked into labor or the sex trade.
Another 4 million children join their ranks each year.
India is home to the most AIDS orphans of any country in the world – approaching 2 million, and expected to double over the next five years.
By some estimates, as many as 100 million child laborers work in India.
Hundreds of thousands of Indian children go missing each year, kidnapped or trafficked – and three out of four of those are never found.
A poor child in India is three times as likely to die before his fifth birthday as a rich child.
More than two million children themselves die every year from preventable infections for which education and medicine are lacking.
One of every three of the world’s malnourished children lives in India.
Fifty percent of childhood deaths there are attributable to malnutrition or starvation.

How you can help:
The first step is awareness – thank you for reading this article and for caring. You can sponsor a child at Miracle Foundation.
You can make a donation at UNICEF, the leading champion for children worldwide. Be a conscious shopper. Is it really worth getting something a few dollars cheaper if it is made by slave labor or children? Check out The Better World Shopping Guide. You can take action by signing petitions and/or financially supporting organizations that are working worldwide to end child labor. Some of them are: globalmarch.org | endchildlabor.org | earthaction.org

Children Matter

Thursday, August 2nd, 2007

All The VISIBLE Children
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5U8fRHJ9yQ]

Global Angels….See our Humanitarian News Update Page

Collective Consciousness: The Impact on Humanity

Saturday, July 7th, 2007

secnn.jpg

CNN

I was feeling dull today. I listened to the news, watched the news, surfed the news, and tonight I saw a tagline: What Would Happen If Everyone Cared?

I felt something shift inside. After all, isn’t that the secret I most cherish, the one I most chase? What would be the impact if everyone cared?

CNN, yes, again CNN, has provided me with something that aligns myself with hope. The quest: What would happen if everyone cared?

 

 

 

I clicked on the link and found Resources on how we, the little people, can help others.

I don’t know about you, but I do wonder about what happens thousands of miles from my home. I also wonder if there is someone I could be helping within a few blocks. That is the aim of Surface Earth. To eventually launch an easy way to help each other within towns and then let the strength of towns spill over. In the meantime, we search to see how others are helping each other, day after day, and today, we were struck by the CNN tagline: Impact Your World.

America’s Children or America’s Parents?

Friday, July 6th, 2007

I’m trying to understand the hot news today, both involving three kids, 12, 11 and 10.

The first is two young girls who allegedly decided to kidnap their neighbor’s child. This time CNN is apparently looking inward to America and our depraved society. (This remark stems from a comment on my post: We Do This To Ourselves: India: Mistreating the Elderly and the Young in the name of custom. The comment did get me thinking more about media coverage, but like I said in my reply comment, that would require a host of other posts and I will leave that to other capable bloggers out in virtual earth).

CNN reports: Girl, 11, allegedly driving 100 mph with .02 blood alcohol, says, on way to pick up sister from a concert

I have to admit, when I saw a flash of this on the television this morning, I assumed it was a boy. As I read the article, I kick myself for making any gender assumption. Part of the article reads:

ORANGE BEACH, Alabama (AP) — Police who chased a car for miles along a highway at speeds up to 100 mph said the driver was drunk, hardly a rarity in this resort town. But there was more: When they looked inside the flipped vehicle with guns drawn, they found an 11-year-old girl at the wheel.

“You go up there thinking it’s a felon you’re dealing with,” assistant police Chief Greg Duck said.

The girl, who was slightly injured in the crash, is now charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, speeding, reckless endangerment and leaving the scene of an accident. Duck said she sideswiped another vehicle during the roughly 8-mile chase.

I just don’t get it. I’m not sitting here ready to blame the parents or anyone else. How do I know if the parents or guardian went to sleep at a normal hour and the kid pretended to be asleep, etc.? I just don’t know. I know we don’t hide the keys to the car in our house. The point is, what makes a child get behind the wheel of a car and proceed to incite an 8 mile chase?

As if that didn’t stump me enough, I had to see two other children, a girl aged 12 and one aged 10, who allegedly kidnapped their next door neighbor, a toddler boy. Again, the news came compliments of CNN.

I on some level have a need to understand how two kids came up with the idea and carried through on the idea to kidnap the little boy. On the other hand, I am just so grateful to see no one was hurt.

What’s going on? Sometime ago, we posted about the crowd that beat up the passenger in Texas, even though the driver who accidentally hit a young girl, stopped his vehicle to get out and check. The crowd beat up the passenger?

Maybe I don’t need to look any further than what happens with the adults in our country to understand why the kids’ seemingly outlandish behavior barely causes anyone to gasp any longer.

There are a lot of theories out there, calls to prayer, calls to enlightenment, I have got to be frank with you, I wish to heck one of these New Age techniques could work on this world instantaneously.

We do this to ourselves: India: mistreating the elderly and the young in the name of custom?

Thursday, July 5th, 2007

I am a proponent of collective consciousness thinking. I believe that we are all webbed together and our blinders prevent us from seeing or knowing this on a day to day basis.

I can rarely find an instant, where one action has not somehow affected another. There are simple examples:

I leave work in a rush, angry over some detail. I am striving to get errands done and arrive home timely. I am in traffic and become angry watching cars ahead of me race through the yield sign and shove their way into the traffic, further delaying my journey because of a lack of courtesy. Miles down the road, I sense a car patiently waiting could use a break, needs some considerate motorist to let them into the traffic so they don’t remain in place for the next hour. Do I notice, do I see, do I allow this person in or do I carry over my anger from my earlier frustrations? Do I in turn now punish this motorist for the ones earlier who almost ran people off the road without care? Do I stop and realize, at times, I may have inadvertantly been the one not slowing at the yield sign, perhaps not out of a lack of deliberate inconsideration, but because I was so in my own world, my own perspective, I simply thought it was “my turn”?

Now, this is just a loose description, the point being is that when you become aware, it is hard to divorce any moment, any action, any word from another.

Today, there are two striking news articles that made me again think: We do this to ourselves. The first is the treatment of “elderly” Hindu woman, the second the treatment of female brides and the price of dowrys.

I saw a picture of a young woman standing in traffic. BBC news entitled its piece: Indian Woman Strips in Dowry Row

This young woman, standing with just underclothes on in traffic and what appears to be a baseball bat in her hand. The picture sounds like a scream to me, I feel that I can hear her soul screaming.

The second article that I keep thinking of was posted on CNN, entitled: Shunned from society, widows flock to city to die:

VRINDAVAN, India (CNN) — Ostracized by society, India’s widows flock to the holy city of Vrindavan waiting to die. They are found on side streets, hunched over with walking canes, their heads shaved and their pain etched by hundreds of deep wrinkles in their faces.

 

 

art.widow.cnn.jpg

 

A widow makes her way in Vrindavan, India, where an estimated 15,000 widows live on the streets.

 

Click to view previous image

1 of 3

Click to view next image

more photos »

These Hindu widows, the poorest of the poor, are shunned from society when their husbands die, not for religious reasons, but because of tradition — and because they’re seen as a financial drain on their families.

They cannot remarry. They must not wear jewelry. They are forced to shave their heads and typically wear white. Even their shadows are considered bad luck.

Hindus have long believed that death in Vrindavan will free them from the cycle of life and death. For widows, they hope death will save them from being condemned to such a life again. Video Watch how some widows are rebelling »

“Does it feel good?” says 70-year-old Rada Rani Biswas. “Now I have to loiter just for a bite to eat.”

Biswas speaks with a strong voice, but her spirit is broken. When her husband of 50 years died, she was instantly ostracized by all those she thought loved her, including her son.

“My son tells me: ‘You have grown old. Now who is going to feed you? Go away,’ ” she says, her eyes filling with tears. “What do I do? My pain had no limit.”

As she speaks, she squats in front of one of Vrindavan’s temples, her life reduced to begging for scraps of food.

There are an estimated 40 million widows in India, the least fortunate of them shunned and stripped of the life they lived when they were married.

It’s believed that 15,000 widows live on the streets of Vrindavan, a city of about 55,000 in northern India.

“Widows don’t have many social rights within the family,” says Ranjana Kumari with the Center for Social Research, a group that works to empower women.

The situation is much more extreme within India’s rural community. “There, it is much more tradition-bound; in urban areas, there are more chances and possibilities to live a normal life.”

But the majority of India’s 1.1 billion population is rural. “The government recognizes the problem,” Kumari says. “It can do a lot, but it’s not doing enough.”

 

Don’t miss

One woman, a widow herself, is working for change. Dr. Mohini Giri has formed an organization called the Guild of Service, which helps destitute women and children.

Giri’s mother was widowed when Giri was 9 years old, and she saw what a struggle it was. Then, Giri lost her husband when she was 50, enduring the social humiliation that comes with being a widow. At times, she was asked not to attend weddings because her presence was considered bad luck.

“Generally all widows are ostracized,” she says. “An educated woman may have money and independence, but even that is snatched away when she becomes a widow. We live in a patriarchal society. Men say that culturally as a widow you cannot do anything: You cannot grow your hair, you should not look beautiful.”

She adds, “It’s the mind-set of society we need to change — not the women.”

Seven years ago, Giri’s organization set up a refuge called Amar Bari, or “My Home,” in Vrindavan. It has become a refuge for about 120 of India’s widows. Giri’s organization is set to open a second home, one that will house another 500 widows.

But as she says, “Mine is but a drop in the bucket.”

At Amar Bari, most widows reject traditional white outfits and grow out their hair. Along the open air corridors that link the house’s courtyard are green wooden doors, leading to dark tiny rooms, home for each widow. Photo See the widows of Vrindavan »

Bent over by osteoporosis, 85-year-old Promita Das meticulously and slowly sweeps the floor just outside her door and then carefully cleans her dishes.

“I came here when I couldn’t work anymore. I used to clean houses,” she says. “Nobody looked after me, nobody loved me. I survived on my own.”

She married at 12 and was widowed at 15. Seventy years later, she finds herself at Amar Bari. “I used to live in front of a temple, but then I came here,” she says….”.

On one end of the spectrum of life, there is mistreatment for not bringing enough into the marriage and the family. On the other end, there is banishment for not having enough left to give after already have given it to everyone else.

I have posted before about the eternal question: why? And yes, as I read these and other stories, my first impulse is to still ask why, but I no longer am convinced that figuring out the “why” will fix these problems. Whose “why” would I begin with? Through whose eyes would I look through first and with whose eyes would I end in trying to figure out the origin?

Other Sources/Viewpoints:

Shubho introduces another view & different statistics:  Atmaav Blogspot

Uprising Radio: Review of Deepa Mehta’s film: Water

India Together: Land Titles & Widows

Widows Rights Organization

WomensENews: 2004 article

America: Debate on caring for elderly patients: family or professionals?

Trashing Celebrities

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007

A few moments ago, well, more than a few now, I posted a piece wondering about miracles.

I am still brewing over that and hope some others out there have some different perspectives to lend to my thoughts, but my mind has continued to wander, not unlike the clouds against an azure sky, I just keep spinning by.

Right now, I am wondering, why must we trash celebrities?

Here are a few devil advocate guesses:

1. Because they “made it”

2. Because we think they have it better than us

3. Because we pay to increase their fame, through products or movie tickets or DVD rentals, we feel they owe it to us to project a certain image

Now, I have posted about this before, but will do so again, why the attack on Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt and their growing brood of loved children?

See, in my mind, I choose. I choose to see people with money and status and fame, whether they want it or not, who step outside the box to help others, as inspired human beings. I recognize the arguments out there, blah, blah, they do it to receive even further recognition and fame and money.

But, is there a point in time that a “celebrity” – no matter what they do – can be accused of taking any action simply to obtain more attention and more money?

I think so.

I think it becomes a feeding frenzy, we blame them for our interest and attention.

After all, once in the limelight, isn’t much of what you do exposed, willingly or otherwise? True or not true?

I surfed the net for humanitarian news and receive many hits on Ms. Jolie. Here are a few:

Compliments of PopSugar:

Fri, 06/08/2007 – 7:00am by PopSugar

Angelina is everywhere! Making the Pop 100, supporting her man at Ocean’s premieres, promoting A Mighty Heart, and yesterday she was “honored for her philanthropic work by joining the Council on Foreign Relations.” Does it ever stop for Angelina? With all this work it’s no wonder she wants to take off to enjoy time with her kids. The actress talked pretty candidly about life with Brad and the kids in this month’s issue of Marie Claire. She even gives us a little glimpse into all of her little ones’ big personalities. Here are some adorable and funny quotes about the Jolie-Pitt kids:

  • On Pax:
    “[Pax] Is probably the wildest person in the house right now.””I’m still having trouble convincing Pax that underwear and pants go together – underwear is not pants!
  • On Zahara:
    “Z – you do her hair; she takes it out. It’s like everybody starts to undress once you’ve gotten them dressed!””Zahara is the smart ass personality. The other day Z said to me, ‘I need a cookie.’ I said, ‘You
    need a cookie? You don’t need a cookie.’ She said, ‘Daddy gonna cry.’ Why is Daddy gonna cry? ‘Daddy wants me to have a cookie. She’s just that smart.”
  • On Shiloh:
    “Shiloh is starting to walk, so she’s falling and eating everything in the place.”
  • On Maddox:
    I’m so happy for my children – especially Mad. I didn’t know if he was ever going to have a dad. So when I watch them having real strong father-son time, or even when Mad tells me, “This is a boy thing, Mom’ – it’s just beautiful to see.”

We can only imagine what it’s like trying to keep up with their little clan. She and Brad are obviously having a great time doing it. Although it sounds like they’re really going to have their hands full when the kids are teenagers! Check out the rest of the article on newsstands now in Marie Claire.”

You can’t make this stuff up. Well maybe you can, but come on guys, is it too much to believe there could be a super succesful woman, with an adoring partner and lovely gorgeous children, who still finds time to launch herself into situations that I would not send my worst enemy into?

See also: Team-Jolie. I could have pasted and copied separate resources, but since they comprehensively came up with the most news hits, I bow my head, and cite their site.

Collision of Truth

Monday, June 18th, 2007

Suppose, you recognized that in the moments when you first awake from sleep, you have no name?

Suppose you recognized that in those few spare moments in the day there was no list, no bills, no anger, no complaints, no one outside of the limitless mind that you awoke to?

Limitless of course implying that you woke to some collective whole. As if whole could be separated from collective.

Switch………….

I recently read something…what a laugh as I am always reading…but I read something, I believe it was on The Spiritual Oracle…and I was questioning something, suprise, repeating number sightings I think, and someone replied that they had learned to accept what is and was…hmmm.

I think I get it now.

I have this odd occurrence daily, birds sweep and hover in front of my car, my windshield, it used to freak me out and I would duck…recently I shrug it off, knowing it means something, but also knowing I do not know the language of birds and I just better let it go. Now I am talking as if I have really mastered sitting back and nothing could be further from the truth, but I swear, I haven’t ducked so much in the last few days.

What helped me was thinking of children. Children don’t to our knowledge recognize the written language and it takes most years of integration to get them to conform and see it “our” way. Yet, a part of them recognizes the power of the written word, the mystical aspect, the magic, and will hold a book, a piece of paper, a dollar bill…and “pretend” to read. I recently saw this and thought: that is me on a spiritual search, I pretend to know the language.

Orphans & Enslaved Children in India

Sunday, June 17th, 2007

I was reminded today about the “Little Arrow in the Upper Right Corner”, by Ronnie over at Out of My Head.

For kicks, I started clicking and clicking. I saw some lovely blogs, but it was a blog focused on saving children and stopping child slavery, that caused me to stop and read and then start clicking on the resources/links listed.

I began to read articles written by Shelly Seale.

The information focused upon the plight of children in India. I of course had read many things about the plight of children in India before, but today, it hit me differently and I was overwhelmed by the enormity of how many children live not only without parents or other family, but live under despicable conditions at the behest of people that mistakenly call themselves human.

I came across information on The Miracle Foundation and news articles talking about the founder Caroline Boudreaux. The grace of one open heart with the humble goal to simply help children is beyond inspiring.

Monteray: The Book: Chapter One

Sunday, June 10th, 2007

Monteray, Chapter One has been moved to a new page, entitled:  Monteray, The Book.

Monteray: The Book: The Human Introduction

Sunday, June 10th, 2007

Excerpts of Monteray have been transferred to a new page:  Monteray, The Book

Angelina Jolie Announces Global Action for Children

Friday, April 27th, 2007

My favorite topic, finding ways to help children.

This morning I came across an article on People Magazine Online regarding Angelina Jolie’s “call to Washington”.

The part that grabbed my attention was as follows:

The actress, 31, appeared at a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to announce the launch of Global Action for Children, a group that raises money for orphans in developing countries.”

I jumped over to the site, and my eye was immediately grabbed by a well designed tagline: “Take Action: Advocate for Children.”

I realize there is a lot of back and forth as to who Angelina Jolie is or isn’t; yet, I find that is not the point. I find the endeavor to use whatever one can to help children is what matters in the end.

In taking my first look at this site, I noted the organization appeared to have been established in 1993. Maybe I heard of it, maybe I didn’t. I know that today it caught my eye because normally headlines with Angelina Jolie have something to do with children and I know on some level I will be interested. So, not only did I read about one more person not required to help others who is doing so anyway, I also discovered a website where it appears that ordinary mortals can reach out and help the children of the world.

Yes. How simply put on the website: “Advocate for Children”.

I for one am going to read more on this site and understand the goal a bit better and how I can help. I wanted to share it with all of you because I think we can agree, there is no reason in the world not to help children.

I often wonder at the one class of human beings that are simply too young to ascribe fault to or cast judgment upon that suffer because we either simply don’t know what to do or we don’t care.

Class and race and gender distinctions to name a few, are they our reasons for not helping children without family? It reminds me of the old television programs where an astronaut would be disconnected from a spaceship, floating presumably for eternity, and I wanted to scream because I couldn’t get in the t.v. to reconnect him to the Mothership. Yes, perhaps I was disturbed as a child. No matter. I do now know as an adult that the young are discriminated against and somehow seen as less than a whole human being.

The title of the website makes me pause to think: “Global”. Going beyond borders or not seeing borders to begin with? Many of us have been raised, right, wrong or indifferently, into naturally seeing borders. I don’t believe such short-sightedness exists from birth. I think of two of my children whose sitter for a period of time, actually more than one sitter over a period of time, was of another nationality, another culture, and yes, had different color skin than my family.

My kids never commented on it. It was only years later that they asked where the sitters were from due to a different language pattern or accent than we have and yes, because at some point, around Kindergarten, my children began to notice or take note of, different skin color.

I use that as a reference point to emphasize that I don’t believe children are born and naturally grow to see differences. The differences we think are important, justified or ones that have been allowed to have arisen, are false teachings and not the natural route of the heart. These teachings are impositions upon our natural state.

So when I consider, again, the name: “Global Action for Children”, as an adult, I first see breaking through the self-imposed barriers, and then I pause, and in my mind, spin around and see no barriers at all, simply beautiful children who deserve anyone and everyone to help them.

Does that mean we ignore “our own”? The ones within our nation, our states, our counties, our towns, our school district, our socio-economic or faith based divisions?

No.

But we don’t cease helping “others” because we falsely believe there should be distinction between children. And we pray for a day when the phrases “our own” and “others” do not exist.

Can there be a concern that we will help so many abroad that children beneath our feet or located within a one mile radius will be neglected?

Absolutely!

But,

why must we choose?

Haven’t we grown up just enough to find a way to help all children?

The children are our keepers’ of tomorrow, what do we choose to teach them now?

Namaste.

Copyright © 2009 All Rights Reserved