Should I Even Write on This Topic?

NB: All of the following musings, observations, ideas, suggestions, etc. are made from the perspective of a full stomach, which cannot help but give one a slightly skewed view of things.
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About a week ago, I made a decision to participate in Blog Action Day, and write a post today, October 15, 2008, about poverty. As today approached, I began to get fairly nervous about writing on this topic. How could I possibly write anything about poverty?

I thought I might write about my own experiences as a young wife trying to support a family of 3 on $12,000 a year, but that is too literal. We always seem to equate poverty with a lack of money or lack of things, even basic things like clean water and adequate food or shelter. But poverty is more than that. It goes deeper. True poverty is in the soul; it is what wipes out hope. And we have woven it into the basic fabric of our existence.

In this world, we have all somehow come to the agreement that there is not enough, that there is scarcity and lack everywhere, and that if you are not careful, you will be out on the street with your belongings scattered around you. That you better take while you can, because if you don’t someone is waiting to take you. We AGREE on this.

What if one by one, each of us decided to DISAGREE with the prevailing notion that poverty is inevitable? What if we began to slow down just a few seconds each day and make just ONE mindful decision: No, I won’t toss that paper towel in the garbage, I’ll compost it. No, I don’t need that latte from Starbucks. No, I think I’d rather check that book out of the library than buy it.

It seems like a lot of “No’s” but in reality it’s saying YES to a different agreement. YES, I’ll help keep the landfills clear. YES, I’ll save a little money to donate to a cause. YES, I’ll support and take advantage a community service and organization that helps education and connection.

Personally, I disagree that there is lack or scarcity. It may seem like a very strange or radical thing to say in times like these, but I truly believe it. The world is overflowing with abundance and it is all ours. We just have to agree to redefine what it means to be “rich” and “poor”. We have to agree to redefine “poverty”.

Gandhi said it best: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” I agree with that. To contemplate reversing poverty on a global scale is far too daunting for the average person to even contemplate. It is so depressing, it prevents you from even beginning. But to be your own change–that is not only possible but imperative.

Search out the places of poverty in your lives. What is lacking? Where do you feel scarcity and fear? Remember that you are AGREEING to feel this way. Why? Why not agree to abunance and bounty instead?

I know that anyone who reads this will think, oh, she’s just a crazy granny who’s out of her mind. But remember, you are reading this in a blog, which means that somewhere, you have access to a computer. By that fact alone, you are therefore “richer” than about 97% of the rest of the world.

So, I ask you this–why are you afraid to try?

In abundance,

GG

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5 thoughts on “Should I Even Write on This Topic?

  1. Oh, I can see you are going to be one of my favorite bloggers. I feel strongly about this, too. When I was a foster mom, I tried so hard to give my kids a vision of what a good life looks like so that they knew there was more to life than what they saw in the trailer parks. In fact, I am going to blog about it tomorrow.

    Very nice post!

  2. This is a good post. I’m sorry I didn’t see it earlier.

    I agree, poverty has so much more to do than with money. It’s a state of mind.

    And we have more than we need actually.

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