A hopeful approach for the future of international relations.
Redirect teen rebellion towards idealism and self improvement.
excerpts from unpublished book: Science,
Religion and the Search for God Bridging the Gap.
Poems of society, the human condition, and spiritual discovery.
student activities and curriculum materials instill an environmental,
cultural, and global perspective, and integrate various academic
a former Peace Corps Volunteer, I commemorated the forty-fourth
anniversary of the Peace
Corps this March. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers
and former volunteers, shared our experiences and reaffirmed
the goal of promoting world peace and friendship. The motto of
the Peace Corps is "Life is Calling - How far will you go?"
first part of the motto, "Life is Calling," strongly
impacted me this past month. What is the voice of "Life?"
Are we listening to its call? Are we responding?
John F. Kennedy heard this call, and it shaped his vision for
America's role in a post-war, post-colonial world. In
his remarks on the establishment of the Peace Corps on March
1, 1961 he stated:
initial reactions to the Peace Corps proposal are convincing
proof that we have, in this country, an immense reservoir of
men and womenanxious to sacrifice their energies and time
and toil to the cause of world peace and human progress.... Every
... American who participates in the Peace Corpswho works
in a foreign landwill know that he or she is sharing in the
great common task of bringing to man that decent way of life which
is the foundation of freedom and a condition of peace."
I write this, the Pope lies on his death bed. Much of the world
is reeling from the persistent effects of natural disasters,
of people displaced by wars and genocide, and of disease, poverty,
and pandemics. In the wake of Theresa Schiavo's recent death,
right-wing politicians hypocritically talk about "a culture
of life" as they approve of war, condone torture, vigorously
advocate capital punishment, and vote to turn wilderness areas
into profit machines for corporations. "Life" is calling
to us all the time. "Life" is more than the duration
of time between conception and death. It is the call to create
a peaceful, healthy, environmentally sustainable world, where
all have respect, a quality life, and the ability to fulfill
suffering has made us focus on the loss of individual life to
the point of trying to prevent the natural process of human death.
More important than sustaining a life that is ending, is the
task of making life for those alive worth living. Recent events
have made people throughout the world focus on human mortality,
while making the expression of grief a common feeling uniting
many diverse people. However, focusing on the individual life
is distracting us from the greater "Life" that is calling
may humanity turn their feelings of grief into constructive actions
to sustain the greater Life - our planet - in which we all live,
and which is slowly dying because of human abuse?
second part of the Peace Corps motto: "How far will you
is a challenge for humanity and our politicians. The Peace Corps
is an example of a political initiative focusing on improving life
for humanity and for the planet. Its projects focus on sustainable
development in order to improve the quality of life without harming
the environment. Many non-governmental organizations with humanitarian
goals or goals to preserve the environment share a similar focus.
The question is: "How far are we willing to go to reverse
the threats to life in which people and governments are engaged?"
people and politicians truly value life as the current outpouring
of emotion and rhetoric might indicate, are we ready to passionately
and energetically act to eliminate hate and overcome our materialistic
addictions? We all must act and leaders must lead to demonstrate
a level of sacrifice and cooperation that will save our planet.
Our greatest tribute to the dead and dying is to make the future
better for the living. "Life is calling." Who is listening?
2005 Richard Sidy