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The unrest and the rising up of people in the middle east seems to demonstrate the power and the drive for people to have a say in how they should live - breaking the shackles of power and control which for years may not have resulted in decisions being made in the best interest of the majority - but maintaining power and control ( and wealth) within the minority. Thats how the majority of us privileged Westerners see it - those of us enjoying a free democratic society - its difficult to understand these alternative regimes but eventually - years of oppression will create an angry and violent backlash. Our thoughts are with the people of Japan - Earthquake, Tsunami, and now leaking Radiation. The continuous horror movie that was graphically captured takes us closer to what those poor people living on the coast must have experienced - yet without us been there we cannot imagine the reality and the shock that many families must be going through. The force of nature is the greatest force we know - why build the largest Power Station closest to the fault line? Hind site is wonderful - and lessons will be learned - the Japanese will show how great a nation they are in handling this and our prayers and thoughts go with all those who have lost loved ones or are still searching. I remember visiting the Philippines one year after the tsunami that killed 80000 people - the stories of how communities were wiped out were as vivid as the courageous accounts of survival.
My Simple Truth number 52 seems pithy and trite in the context of the above but I include it here in part as a way of paying tribute to the potential for us all to find strength and courage to survive in extraordinary circumstances.
52. You will be faced with a challenge that will consume you and test your resolve to survive. No one can prepare you for the traumas and tragedies of life.
No doubt you will experience the hurt, pain, and devastation associated with your life balance, be it emotional or physical, being threatened. When this happens, it is unlikely that you will be in a fit state of mind to recall what I write here now. I hope you never experience the following: diagnosis of a terminal illness, your child dies, your parents die young, you become disabled, you are involved in a tragic accident or incident resulting in a loss of function of sorts, other loved ones die tragically, everything around you seems to be falling apart, you file for bankruptcy, you get divorced, you feud with your loved ones – and the list goes on. It’s a depressing list, yet it’s reality for the vast majority of people on earth. How do they cope? How can they survive? I am sure there is a point in the traumatic experience where the confidence of survival is low, yet somehow, the resolve of the human spirit breaks through. You can either choose to be subsumed by events and play the full role of victim, or you can fight for survival. Many people turn the experience around and find deep meaning into why this has happened now, to them. They find a renewed or new purpose and somehow become stronger. As a result of the experience, they are able to help others to either avoid what happened to them or cope better. Do not underestimate your ability to achieve extraordinary things. Our potential as human beings is phenomenal. ( Full Version now available in the second edition)