Deeply saddened by the murder of George Floyd and the suicide of Sushant Singh Rajput, I find myself torn between grief and hope.
Anger has filled the streets in mass demonstrations across the entire world. Both deaths have caused a collective of news coverage as we have not seen before. CNN calls this moment in time a "Great Awakening" of empathy and solidarity.
Were these deaths necessary to remind us of the values of humanity? Freedom? Love? Mental Health? Equality? Diversity? Transparency? Integrity?
When I was a child, I saw a politician talk about how they stand for unity, for equality and the importance of healthcare and education and how they have clear plans on how to boost economy. Listening to their speech, I literally thought: "What non-sense!"
Of course this person wants unity. Of course they want equality, of course healthcare is important. Of course, we need to boost the economy. Why are they saying these things?
At that time, I was convinced that every human being wants good, I literally thought it was meaningless to say it. Being good is a given. I was a child - you can call me naïve! Or you can call me smart!
What I appreciate about my thoughts then, is optimism: every human wants good!
What I have learnt since then: the impact pain and fear cause to human's intentions and actions and the value of communication and freedom of speech.
Mahatma Gandhi said: "I remain an optimist. Not that there is any evidence that I can give that right is going to prosper, but because of my unflinching faith that right must prosper in the end."
He also said, "You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty." We are experiencing a pivotal moment in time! With the news cycles and mass protests across the world, we can see the power of society and we are turning this moment into a deeply internalized movement. We must keep this moving. What we (individually and collectively) make out of this moment will determine the future and progress of our countries. Thankfully these mass demonstrations under the name of "Black Lives Matter" have spread globally. With all the energy we have, we need to keep this momentum going. Until now, we are missing leaders showing an example of compassion, unity, integrity and equality. Therefore, we need to become the leaders we want to see. We have the responsibility. And now is the time.
On what I have learnt:
Only hurt people hurt people. Nelson Mandela: "No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart that its opposite."
Hatred, fear and pain is what caused the deaths of George Floyd and Sushant Singh Rajput. Hatred, fear and pain is what led the offenders to take decisions that caused the deaths of George Floyd and Sushant Singh Rajput.
Trevor Noah had released a video around the current happenings in the US and talk about the domino effect of events of hatred, fear and pain. George Floyd, Minneapolis Protests, Ahmaud Arbery & Amy Cooper | The Daily Social Distancing Show
In this video he talks about the importance of having leaders and decisionmakers that are MOST accountable. They are the ones that set the energy. The same way parents set an example to their children. The same way coaches set an example to their teams. The same way teachers set an example to their students. They say, lead by example. Where is the example now? Where is the leader now? Where is the decisionmaker leading with compassion? Where is the leader of peace? Where is the leader of integrity? "Hatred is never ended by hatred but by love" (Buddha)
And today: we see the power of grassroot movements. We see injustice and we take charge. We need to do what we can to remind our leaders of values of humanity. We see an exceptional form of unity on the streets. We need to clarify what our vision of the world is, as society and realize that together. From here and with this movement of society we need leaders to rise and carry forward this movement. Being goodhearted. Valuing human health (physical and mental equally), valuing transparency, valuing diversity. And setting an example. Leading with compassion, integrity and love.
Deepak Chopra reminds us that we need to harness our creativity to create a world that is sustainable, peaceful and full of joy. In a speech about the demonstrations, he talks about, how every crisis created a new innovation. Can, us surrendering to our core human values, be our innovation after this crisis?
It's up to us!