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In the End

In the end, what does it all mean? We live and we die, and that is the harsh reality. We are born into this world, struggle in it, suffer,
each one of us, and in the end we all exit. What does it all mean to come here and then go? Are we like migrant workers to be used and
exploited, but never really at home? Or are we more like the colonials, fighting our way into this wilderness to bring our civilization? Are
we the masters of the world? Then, if so, why do we live with oppression, watch millions die in holocausts, turn away from the
unpleasant things in life, like disease or deformity, and then forget ourselves in the merry play of fiestas and drink and frolic? We would
save the frogs from extinction, which we should, and yet we would allow human beings to be starved, imprisoned and beaten, or killed,
because they stood in the way of some grand scheme. The Slavs under Stalin, Jews under Hitler, Chinese under Mao, Biafrans,
Ugandans, Cambodians, Tibetans, Armenians, Kurds, Gypsies, Croats, Bengalis, Kashmiri, Afghani, Somalis, Tutsis, Yanonami... but I
will stop here to keep the list short. All these were killed systematically within this century, and many more were killed in past centuries.
Each one of those millions killed was a human being. Their crime? They were in the way. The world protested, when we knew of it, but
it went on unhindered. What kind of test is this? Is it a planetary test of our sanity?

We live and we die, and in that short life span we have so much potential for the good. So how is it we can be so attached to our own
particular cause that we would commit hundreds and thousands and millions to their graves? Was not each one born a beautiful baby
loved by his or her parents? Where did we stop loving them and started to hate them instead? Was it puberty and sexual awakening?
Was it the first signs of personal independence? Or was it just because they were black or brown or yellow or white? Where did the
individual beauty turned into ugliness? And when did that beautiful child turn into an adult who would kill another?

Life is not so long that we have the leisure of such ghastly pursuits. We do not have time in each lifetime to be so angry with one
another. Life is too short. Did not the God of all the people throughout the world profess Compassion and Mercy? Was not Allah or
Yahweh or Brahma or the Lord also a Loving God? Did He love only His people at the exclusion of all the others? At least the atheist
can fall back upon an excuse. They could not see beyond themselves. But all people who profess a higher Being have no such luxury.
How can a hand that kills another live with itself attached to its body, especially in the name of its God? It is absurd. No one has the right
to be so attached to such self righteousness as to terminate another's life. Yet, this has been the reality of our history. It is time to stop.

Each person occupies a small space in an infinitesimal moment of cosmic time. That is the reality. And in that small space, each one calls
to the other nearby that it is theirs. In that flash of life between when we blossom and wither as human beings, we seem to feel that we
are the most important thing around. Such intense attachment to the self, from a distance, is laughable. For example, how does the Earth
look from high up in a transcontinental flight? The planet's mountains and rivers and valleys look unmarked, pristine and beautiful. We
cannot see the barbed fences that crisscross our world like a giant spider's web. Nor can we see the national boundaries bristling with
weapons. Looking down on the planet, it is difficult to see how such suffering which we had created for ourselves could be etched into
that beautiful land. From up there, we look like we are a part of heaven. But from below it is a swirl of malodorous activity. Upon closer
inspection, our beautiful world is a troubled anthill of contention. Is it worth it? Or are we living in some sort of self delusion that what
we are fighting for is the most important thing in the universe? Regrettably, closer to the ground, that seems to be what we had settled
for. We had accepted what is most small as big, and forsaken a much greater and more beautiful view of our world for a small and
miserable one. And in that small short vision, in all those struggles to overcome our enemy, we had accepted a darkness rather than light.
Like frogs croaking in a particular piece of a dark muddy pool, we call to all the others that we are masters or our infinitesimal place in

But this is where it needs to end. We are part of a much bigger picture than our tiny individual passions. Not that these passions are
invalid in any way. They are who we are. But we need to raise our vision to a higher order, and from a greater distance and on a higher
plane, to see ourselves who we really are, as one world, one people, and a beautiful one at that. A deficient mind may be allowed to play
by itself in the corner with its spittle. But in our future, we cannot remain imbeciles. The world is too connected now to let us live in a
self satisfied isolation. Each one of us will live only a short allotted time, and then die. That is a fact. So why would we work so hard in
that short time to leave a legacy of pain and anger and death? Is this what we are born for? Or can we change what had been the abuses
of the past and at least die with the dignity of knowing that we had done to better rather than to destroy. The future will remember us
and thank us. Otherwise, the legacy of our short life on Earth will be spat upon for having been the evildoers of our time. Is it worth it?
Really, think about it. Each one of us, in every moment of our life, has a choice. Which will we choose?

I had traveled to many countries and in each one I tried to speak with the people there, one on one. I failed to see the differences. They
are all the same to me. Whether from European stock, or Asian, or African, or Ameri-Indian, or Australian, they all had the same hopes
and dreams and aspirations and warmth and smiles. If at times mischievous or devious, nevertheless they were all beautiful, and in each
one I was treated with kindness and respect. Had I been carrying a particular flag, perhaps I might have been treated differently. But in
every case I was first a citizen of the world, though my passport said American, and that was how everyone I met treated me. It is
possible to do this. We do not have to identify ourselves only with a particular cause or ethnic group or belief system or even country.
We are first citizens of this planet, and then we can join in with its various subgroups, if we wish to. But we are first human beings, and
then we are American or Russian or Japanese or Zimbabwean. So why did we have it backwards? What made us think we were
anything else? For some reason, we got very attached to some sort of illusion. The ancient Hindu sages called it Maya. We do not have
to choose to live an illusion. It is okay to see reality as it really is. We are all in this world together, like it or not. And it is a very short life
at that. So, in the end, be remembered as great and generous. Why not choose to make it better?


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