The cause that motivated the Kurdi family to escape from their native Syria in a boat by the sea in the middle of the night facing the vicissitudes that entails and risking their lives, is the same reason that has moved thousands of immigrants from different areas of the Middle East seeking to reach Europe: to escape from the war and find peace and security. Unfortunately that family has joined the 2,300 immigrants who have died by shipwreck just in 2015.
A few days ago the wrenching image of the smallest member of the Kurdi family, whose body was found on the beach in Turkey in the Bodrum peninsula, has shocked the world. His name was Aylan Kurdi and he was three years old. With his tragic death he has portrayed the plight of refugees seeking asylum as the only way to get to escape from the war raging in their countries and which has already killed more than 120,000 people, including 14,000 children and has caused 11.5 million Syrians to flee their homes.
The inert, cold, and lifeless image of Aylan Kurdi’s body washed ashore on the beach reflects what we have become as a society, as humanity. The ability to feel affection, understanding and solidarity with other people is what makes us humanity but, can we still be called “humanity” when we see our governments, our political leaders turn their back to that group of people, men, women, immigrant children who cry out for help and compassion?. We see influential governments spend millions of dollars in search of water and life on other planets, instead of engaging in ours, on Earth, where 4,500 children die every day from lack of water. The biggest disease today is not leprosy or tuberculosis but indifference. This indifferent and insensitive attitude has now reached a global dimension. We have learned to focus only and solely on ourselves and we have closed the door and turned our backs to our neighbors. But the facts and world problems do not cease to exist because they are ignored. As Juan Montalvo said once:There is nothing harder than the softness of indifference.
The wars and conflicts ravaging the world are caused by ethnic, religious, and identity differences, or by the appropriation of the natural resources of a region, differences in the form of government or the struggle for political power. We must begin to see others not as foreigners, Arabs, Jews, homosexuals, blacks, whites, Christians, Muslims, communists, capitalists, but as brothers. The Earth is but one country and mankind its citizens -Baha’u’allah-. When we understand and accept the Oneness of all Life, our lives will immeasurably change for the better. Whilst we are stuck in the illusion of “us” versus “them”, we will continue to suffer wars and conflicts. The dysfunction we are seeing on a global scale is due to our inability to accept this basic concept: to see others as equals, as brothers.
The purpose of this article is to make you a call. A call to leave indifference. A call to abandon prejudice and paradigms of inequality. A call to be tolerant and to accept our neighbors as they are. A call to brotherhood. A call to extend your hand to your brother and to be compassionate. That is the real way to end wars and conflicts and to prevent more men, women and children, as the tiny boy Aylan Kurdi who was only three years old, to continue suffering and dying.
“We are all one – or at least we should be – and it is our job, our duty, and our great challenge to fight the voices of division and seek the salve of reconciliation.” – Roy Barnes.
Wake up. Rise up. Stand up for each other! Act as One Family!.
Published in Voices of Youth -UNICEF-. http://www.voicesofyouth.org/en/posts/the-globalization-of-indifference-