One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean.
Approaching the boy, he asked, “What are you doing?”
The boy replied, “Throwing starfish back into the ocean.
The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die.”
“Son,” the man said, “don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish?
You can’t make a difference!”
After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it back into the surf.
Then, smiling at the man, he said, “I made a difference for that one.”
(adapted from The Star Thrower by Loren Eiseley)
A friend recently questioned being involved in efforts to end genocide because, “you can’t end genocide.” As genocide continues, in a sense, one could say that statement appears to be accurate. Yet it is the starfish story that immediately came to mind. Read more »
We may not have ended genocide, healed trauma all across the globe, or achieved world peace… but that doesn’t mean our efforts have been in vain.
When you sign a postcard to stop the atrocities in places like Sudan, Congo, Burma…
When you read the news about the epidemic of global trauma and refuse to ignore it’s pervasiveness and devastation…
When you attend the Ubuntu Group and are able to be present and available to hear the struggles of a friend…
When you commit yourself to the inner process of healing your own life…
When you find the courage to forgive…
… it matters.
We know we can “make a difference for that one.” Together we must also hold hope that somehow, over time, within that which is unseen, it is the many that will benefit.
Wishing you a peace-filled, fulfilling 2012,
Barbara & Anshul
[Ubuntu] n. A person is a person through other persons. “I am because we are”