Make the world a better place
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03-12-2015, 08:41 AM
Make the world a better place
I think we've well established the world can be pretty awful. One only needs to turn on the news to see how scary and horrible the world, and really people, can be.

Ghandi said "be the change you want to see in the world". Iggy Pop countered with the equally valid "the society is too big, and the individual is too small." so, which was right?

I think they both were. The individual may not be able to solve world hunger or curtail violence. But, all of us can leave the world a little better than we found it. If enough people change some of the little things, the world will be better for all of us. So, what do you do? What are you willing to do?

My wife and I rescue dogs. The rescue we work with has saved thousands of dogs and we personally have saved dozens. We spend time and money and open our home to them. We have found loving families for every dog we fostered and those families all are grateful for the life we helped save and get to them.

You may be thinking "dogs? That's it?". But, its enough. Dog lives matter. All life matters. I can't save starving children, or even children who need good foster homes. But, I can save dogs so I do. How we treat the most vulnerable lives around us defines our humanity.

Stop focusing on the horror. Go be the change you want to see in the world. Find something you care about and get involved. If you can't give money, give time and effort. And, time and effort is usually just as, if not more, valuable than money. My wife and I combine the two and we do a lot of fund raising for the rescue. But, get off the sidelines and get in the game. Be the change.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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03-12-2015, 09:16 AM
RE: Make the world a better place
(03-12-2015 08:41 AM)BnW Wrote:  I think we've well established the world can be pretty awful. One only needs to turn on the news to see how scary and horrible the world, and really people, can be.

Ghandi said "be the change you want to see in the world". Iggy Pop countered with the equally valid "the society is too big, and the individual is too small." so, which was right?

I think they both were. The individual may not be able to solve world hunger or curtail violence. But, all of us can leave the world a little better than we found it. If enough people change some of the little things, the world will be better for all of us. So, what do you do? What are you willing to do?

My wife and I rescue dogs. The rescue we work with has saved thousands of dogs and we personally have saved dozens. We spend time and money and open our home to them. We have found loving families for every dog we fostered and those families all are grateful for the life we helped save and get to them.

You may be thinking "dogs? That's it?". But, its enough. Dog lives matter. All life matters. I can't save starving children, or even children who need good foster homes. But, I can save dogs so I do. How we treat the most vulnerable lives around us defines our humanity.

Stop focusing on the horror. Go be the change you want to see in the world. Find something you care about and get involved. If you can't give money, give time and effort. And, time and effort is usually just as, if not more, valuable than money. My wife and I combine the two and we do a lot of fund raising for the rescue. But, get off the sidelines and get in the game. Be the change.

An individual action might not change the world in and of itself, but it can create ripple effects that cause cultural changes that can. Especially in this day and age, where any random act of kindness, or brutality, has the potential to go viral and be seen by millions in a matter of days, hours, or even minutes.

I don't necessarily concern myself with the bigger picture too much these days. I'm quite pessimistic in that regards. Sure, I may insert my two cents into a debate, but I don't actually have any hope that the context of civilization, and the fact that its evolution is defined by violence, will change anytime soon. Nonetheless, I do what I can at a micro level. If it causes change beyond what I can see in front of me, great. If not, whatever.

When I was in my low 20's, stationed at Groton, Connecticut, I spent some time working as a volunteer with Literacy Volunteers of Southeastern Connecticut in my off time. The tasks were simple enough. My primary roll was to teach English, mostly to recent immigrants. But other tasks included helping with things like getting library cards, learning to drive, learning how to fill out resumes, etc. Today I'm still friends with some of them, and it's more obvious over a decade later the effect that had. Some still have jobs I helped them get, which allowed them opportunities for themselves and their kids they wouldn't have otherwise had access to. I also helped bring them out of their own isolated demographic, which no doubt played a key roll in allowing them to blend in with American society. Today, looking at the psychological trends of the mass shooters, I recognize that this is a potentially big thing.

Last week I started volunteering with the Canadian Council for Refugees in Montreal. Initially it was helping with remodeling and winterization of the buildings they'll be staying in, but once the masses of Syrians begin to arrive next week I'll be back to teaching English again, albeit as an unscheduled assistant since my work rotation and my frequent Army training would make it difficult for me to run scheduled classes. Beyond that, a couple days ago I brought some newly arrived refugees out into town and treated them to Korean food lol. Now it may indeed be a small number of people in total I'm doing something for, but people talk. They share their stories with their peers, and word spreads. At a minimum, I know that the ones I'm helping immerse into Canadian society (which feel strange saying as a recent immigrant myself) are not going to experience the same level of isolation that many others do because I'm not gonna let that happen. When people ask them what their experience has been like, they will have good things to say. With the political climate the way it is, that's not going to be the case for all of them.

And before I seem too hippy-ish, yes I'll also take them shooting if they have an interest in it Tongue

'Murican Canadian
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03-12-2015, 06:07 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
Currently, I am not really doing a whole lot.

When my kids were growing up I was the mom who took in the kids who had crappy parents and a lousy home life. I created a safe haven for them. There was always plenty of food, TV, movies, toys, games, extra toothbrushes, and a place where there wasn't chaos. I made my home their home, attended school and sporting events when their parents were too sorry to do so, and let them be themselves.

I really had one rule - no alcohol. Period. I didn't have to make any other rules as they appreciated that my door was always open and I was always willing to go pick them up from a volatile situation at home. I was treated with respect because I treated them with respect.

I am still in touch with some of my 'regulars' and happy to say that they are all doing well...successful with families and careers, a couple of them are military.

My home life was awful. I wanted to help where I could in a real way to offer some peace and stability to kids who didn't have it at home.

- And three of my six critters are rescues...so, there's that. Wink

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat

Are my Chakras on straight?
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03-12-2015, 06:20 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
I've been actively trying to do my best to be kind. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I know that the moments I received kindness from someone when others might have misunderstood my situation and judged me, meant the world to me.

That means not assuming the mom with an out of control toddler at the store is a bad mom, not assuming that the person who swerved into my lane is a bad driver who wasn't paying attention, not assuming someone I work with is an asshole and replying in kind just because I got a nasty e-mail.

Remembering my mistakes, my pain, my bad decisions while reminding myself that I'm a good person with big problems that aren't easy to deal with really helps.

I try to assume people are good with good intentions who are trying their best.

I try to give as much kindness, love, and understanding to people as I can.

[Image: BIGYwpp.jpg]

I hope that the world turns, and things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that, even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you, I love you. With all my heart, I love you. - V for Vendetta
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03-12-2015, 06:41 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
(03-12-2015 06:20 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  I've been actively trying to do my best to be kind. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I know that the moments I received kindness from someone when others might have misunderstood my situation and judged me, meant the world to me.

That means not assuming the mom with an out of control toddler at the store is a bad mom, not assuming that the person who swerved into my lane is a bad driver who wasn't paying attention, not assuming someone I work with is an asshole and replying in kind just because I got a nasty e-mail.

Remembering my mistakes, my pain, my bad decisions while reminding myself that I'm a good person with big problems that aren't easy to deal with really helps.

I try to assume people are good with good intentions who are trying their best.

I try to give as much kindness, love, and understanding to people as I can.

[Image: BIGYwpp.jpg]

It's more than you think it is. Sometimes a person just needs to have another person notice them. I open doors, for everyone, I have been doing it since I was taught to as a pre-teen. No exceptions made...I hold the door for anyone who is approaching at the same time I am.

A thank you and have a nice day with a smile and sincerity is worth a lot.

A decent tip when it's deserved.

A sincere compliment on someone's hair or clothing or piece of jewelry - it's just a way of saying - I see you, I really see you, I noticed something about you that is pleasing and I want you to know that I noticed.

We move so fast and often in our own little bubble that we often pass right by people as though they don't exist.

Just being nice is worth it. It may only be a small gesture but to some people it may be the best thing that happened to them all day. Smile

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat

Are my Chakras on straight?
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03-12-2015, 06:47 PM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2015 06:52 PM by Adrianime.)
RE: Make the world a better place
(03-12-2015 06:20 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  I've been actively trying to do my best to be kind. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I know that the moments I received kindness from someone when others might have misunderstood my situation and judged me, meant the world to me.

That means not assuming the mom with an out of control toddler at the store is a bad mom, not assuming that the person who swerved into my lane is a bad driver who wasn't paying attention, not assuming someone I work with is an asshole and replying in kind just because I got a nasty e-mail.

Remembering my mistakes, my pain, my bad decisions while reminding myself that I'm a good person with big problems that aren't easy to deal with really helps.

I try to assume people are good with good intentions who are trying their best.

I try to give as much kindness, love, and understanding to people as I can.
Very similar to em-dizzle in some ways Smile. I try to be kind always unless that person is being particularly nasty. Even people who normally would be perceived as "bad" people, I try to think of it from their perspective and why they might be doing what they are doing. In general I don't have ill-will towards anybody.

However, my mission is NOT to save or help others. I will do my best not to burden others directly (we all burden others in some way or another I know). But I will not make it my personal goal to dedicate my life to making others have a better one. Those aren't my goals. I enjoy helping others when I can, especially if all it takes is a little of my time. But my primary focus is me and those I care about. Strangers have my attention until they ask for money. As far as pets go, if I get a pet it will be for my sake. The pet will become part of my family and I will care for it, but I would never take in a pet just because it was needy (I might help it find a home, but I wouldn't take it in).

That being said I would support "smart" social programs that were built to help people get treatment for addiction, mental, and health issues. And provide solid reliable help to get these people, and homeless people, back as contributing members of society in some respect. I would vote for our tax dollars to be used in this way I mean.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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03-12-2015, 06:50 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
(03-12-2015 06:41 PM)Anjele Wrote:  It's more than you think it is. Sometimes a person just needs to have another person notice them. I open doors, for everyone, I have been doing it since I was taught to as a pre-teen. No exceptions made...I hold the door for anyone who is approaching at the same time I am.
Same!
Quote:A thank you and have a nice day with a smile and sincerity is worth a lot.
Yes, I agree!
Quote:A decent tip when it's deserved.
Totally think tipping is a corrupt, dishonest, and harmful practice. But that's a separate issue.
Quote:A sincere compliment on someone's hair or clothing or piece of jewelry - it's just a way of saying - I see you, I really see you, I noticed something about you that is pleasing and I want you to know that I noticed.

We move so fast and often in our own little bubble that we often pass right by people as though they don't exist.

Just being nice is worth it. It may only be a small gesture but to some people it may be the best thing that happened to them all day. Smile
Yess Thumbsup

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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03-12-2015, 07:40 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
My wife and I have always given a lot of money to child care charities but we also have done a lot of civic work. My wife volunteers at our local zoo and we give a fortune to animal welfare agencies. I rescued horses for many years and was chairman of the board [a volunteer position] of our local equestrian event center for six years. I am still a fanatic about big cats and I give money to pantera. For 30 years I taught the self-defense handgun course one weekend a month mostly to abused women. I can't do that anymore because it requires standing up for hours and hours. I am too old and crippled to be out delivering meals to people [I did that for a while] or to chase down and catch abused horses. I also represented people whose kids, or spouse, was trying to become their guardian. Often times they were more interested in getting control of the person's money. That was about 15% to 20% of my law practice and I did that pro bono. I know I've done other charitable work but I cannot remember it right now. Oh yeah, I was on the ABA Task Force for the Guantanamo Detainees but a lot of people would consider that to have been a traitor's work.
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03-12-2015, 08:18 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
(03-12-2015 06:20 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  I've been actively trying to do my best to be kind. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I know that the moments I received kindness from someone when others might have misunderstood my situation and judged me, meant the world to me.

That means not assuming the mom with an out of control toddler at the store is a bad mom, not assuming that the person who swerved into my lane is a bad driver who wasn't paying attention, not assuming someone I work with is an asshole and replying in kind just because I got a nasty e-mail.

Remembering my mistakes, my pain, my bad decisions while reminding myself that I'm a good person with big problems that aren't easy to deal with really helps.

I try to assume people are good with good intentions who are trying their best.

I try to give as much kindness, love, and understanding to people as I can.

[Image: BIGYwpp.jpg]

Be kind. Always.

#sigh
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03-12-2015, 08:21 PM
RE: Make the world a better place
I have seen the help by those here toward myself. If ever I am down or very ill, you rally around to help. When I have been stuck at home alone for days I can come here and you guys help.

The effect this has had on my own survival is palpable.

I am so very grateful for your patience and kindness.

Me, these days? Not much really. I teach once a week. Very little return but I can see the development and that excites me.

Recently I accidentally donated $100.00 to a charity thinking I was actually paying a bill. That was pretty funny. Although I could not afford it.

When I was younger I used to teach free anti rape classes to women.

I literally taught martial arts to 1000's of people.

These days I try to chat to other victims of cancer to cheer them up. But only when I have the strength.

I once saved a drowning child when I was also a child. Took the kid to his parent and said "He was drowning." Turned and left feeling embarrassed.

That's about it.

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
Banjo.
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