Monthly Archives: May 2009

Desprendimiento…detachment…this one is in Spanish!

Cada vez que regreso de visita a mi país tengo serios problemas con la separación que viene después de la visita. Por que será? Se que estar con los seres queridos es una fuente de felicidad pero realmente mi problema parece ser mayor que eso. Cada vez que me voy se que existe una gran posibilidad de regresar a visitar en un futuro no muy lejano pero por alguna razón no encuentro calma al partir no importa si viajo sola o acompañada. Ahora, sabemos (o deberíamos saber) que la Palabra de Dios es el mejor remedio para remediar nuestras faltas y regresar la alegría y esperanza a nuestro corazón. Por eso decidí buscar en las Escrituras Bahá’ís la respuesta. Esto es algo que encontré:

“!Oh hijo del hombre! Aunque atravesases veloz la inmensidad del espacio y recorrieses la extensión del cielo, no encontrarías tranquilidad sino en la sumisión a nuestro Mandamiento y en la humildad ante nuestra Faz”. – Bahá’u’lláh

Esto me hizo pensar si dejamos las cosas que nos afectan en Manos de Dios, encontraremos esa paz interior que tanto ansiamos. Ahora entiendo que cada vez que dejo atrás mi país y me pongo triste es por mis propios deseos de estar con la familia o cualquier otra razón que no es la Voluntad de Dios. Aun que en la tierra estemos lejos de nuestros amados, tenemos los otros mundos de Dios que nos esperan para estar con ellos y disfrutar de su compañía. Eso no significa que no debemos mostrar amor en este mundo sino que todavía al estar alejados, no debemos perder las esperanzas! Que alivio!

Spiritual earthquakes!

Early today there were reports of a 7.1 – 7.4 earthquake in Honduras. Having personal interests there I was somewhat worried. After my concerns were vanished, I still had a feeling of anxiety and sadness and could not understand why. Now that I have realized the similarities between a physical and a spiritual earthquake, I understand my frustration. As we grow as human beings and start questioning things and think deeper on the actual meaning of the world and our existence, and the evident signs (yes, they are evident) God puts in our path for us to bump into and make the right turn, we confront personal and spiritual earthquakes.

I can state for a fact that at least probably around 90% of the people of the world have had a moment in their lives where they felt uncertain, worried and disconcerted over an action they performed, an action performed by others that influenced them or just an event that was out of their control and had direct implications on them. And if during a specific event they didn’t, they probably should’ve. These spiritual earthquakes are an instrument for personal growth just like physical earthquakes are a way for individuals to reinforce their homes and buildings, realize that this life is not eternal and in the worst case scenario, earthquakes are an alert that we must be prepared for something more dangerous that is close. Spiritual earthquakes then, as these ones, can be a call for us to change our lifestyle, remind someone we love them, be kinder, study harder or simply thank God for all of His Bounties. So how about we listen to them next time?

What is unity?

Yeah, I know the title is a bit much…but seriously, how much do we know about it? How well do we understand it?

In the Baha’i Writings there are a great number of Quotations that mention this word and try to explain (according to our limited understanding as human beings) its true meaning. Now, I used to think that phrases such as “unity of thought” or “unity of efforts” meant we should all think alike and be OK with the opinions of others. Later on I learnt that “unity of thought” is far more amazing than that. I realized it means that after consulting about a certain issue, the truth comes to light by the clash of opinions and the detachment each person shows towards their own opinion. Now, once a consensus is reached either by unanimity or majority of votes then all members must abide by this decision. If it is carried out with the utmost love and obedience, this is unity of thought. That all are united by one common goal and vision. This is closely linked with unity of efforts. Clearly, no need to explain that further.

Unity unlike uniformity is what brings together all peoples of the world and makes us realize that we actually compliment each other. Not only physically (in beauty of diversity) but also intellectually. The work or a scientist would require the aid of an engineer which would at the same time need the assistance of a teacher and the latter of a health-care practitioner and so on…we are dependent upon each other not only in this regard but also culturally. A culturally diverse world is far more interesting and beautiful than a world dominated by uniformity and one culture has so much to give to the world in regards to traditional knowledge that it cannot be undermined.WE MUST PRESERVE CULTURE. It is our patrimony.

Speaking of which, I have the honor to participate in this year’s UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. I am sure the next post will be related to that.

Until then!

The United Nations – What is sustainable Development?

As a resident of New York, I find myself close to the UN. I am fortunate enough to be able to do an internship in this international body. I am sitting in room 4 as we speak, listening to deliberations regarding agriculture and rural development. As usual, many new concepts that require looking into. For instance, what is sustainable development? Someone mentioned that they did a survey and asked people around a certain city what sustainable development meant to them…the result: not one answer worth of mention! I could not believe it.

I think we all need to educate ourselves. Let’s see… Sustainable Development is:

– The Brundtland Commission’s brief definition of sustainable development as  the “ability to make development sustainable—to ensure that it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (Science and Policy for Sustainable Development, Volume 47,  Number 3, page 3. Robert W. Kates, Thomas M. Parris, and Anthony A. Leiserowitz, 2005).

– And of course…according to Wikipedia; it is a pattern of resource use that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for future generations to come.

-All definitions of sustainable development require that we see the world as a system—a system that connects space; and a system that connects time (IISD-International Institute for Sustainable Development).

Are we all clear now? More coming up soon!

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