Everywhere we look there are stories of destruction and violence. The tragedy played out on our television screens in what masquerades as the “nightly news” glosses over the personal cost and intimate tragedies of individuals caught up in the exercise of power. Closer to home, friends and family face crises of one kind or another – loss of work, mortgage stress, infidelity, depression or the unsparing calamity of social isolation. And on a macro level, climate change, war and natural and man-made disasters fill our headlines and our minds. No wonder we feel that the world is on fire.
But while waiting for a late night conference call, I stumbled upon the Personal Democracy Forum. I listened in and was amazed. I watched the presentations from half a world away and was calmed – and then inspired. And this presentation from Michael Wesch, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology – one of my favourite thinkers and doers – reminded me that while the world is on fire, one must do what one can.