the world doesn’t need saving,,

Sitting in a Model UN Conference in the International Environment Committee, I did a lot of reflecting.

Discussing topics such as the Kyoto Protocol Extensions, Sea Level Rise, Growing Population. I suddenly felt helpless — there is more than one answer. Or Perhaps, there really is not an answer.

Many people came up with resolutions and may resolutions were shot down. I ultimately realized the difficulty of solving the whole environmental issue. Not everyone will agree and not everyone truly sees the environment as its’ first priority.

And I thought, How do you solve a problem when many people don’t see it as a problem? How do you solve a problem when many people have so many misconceptions?

In the end, for all the topics, every group had a passing resolution. The last day of the committee was filled with many tired teenagers and lots of laughter. To pass by time, I decided to talk to the dias (head chair) who was a junior at the college we were at, majoring in environmental science.

My friend asked him questions about environmental science and how there were two paths you can take: environmental science and environmental studies.

Then my friend replied, “Which path do you recommend if I want to SAVE the world?”

and then it hit me…

Why does everyone want to save the world? In my opinion, the world does not need saving. Global Warming is happening. Climate Change is happening. We cannot fully elimate these things. But instead, we can hinder the process and slow it down.

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Lost.

Today I lost a key. Except, it wasn’t just any key; it was the key to the mailbox.

Frantically looking around, I searched in the drawer where I put it all the time and I tore the house up and down.

This is why I hate things that are SO tiny.

I felt myself becoming frustrated with every little thing, until finally I just stopped. I went about my day as if nothing happened. I went to the park and went on a nice walk and for a bit, I seemed to have forgotten all about the scenario..

Until, I went home! I started the process all over again, until finally, I stopped.

I thought.

I walked a bit more.

And then I thought. . .Aha, It came to me.

I silently walked over to my laundry basket. Pulled out the shirt that I wore yesterday and checked the “frocket” (front pocket). As soon as my hands touched the small piece of metal, I lit up!

As I laughed at myself, I began to realize the power of something so “small.” Small things really can make a world of a difference (just like how this small key was powerful enough to almost ruin my entire day). We don’t think about this and I feel as if many people dedicate their lives to only looking at what they perceive to be “big.”

Everyone wants to end WORLD hunger. GLOBAL poverty. We want to SAVE the WORLD. We want to be the RICHEST, SMARTEST, CUTEST person in the world.

But although these things are important, we begin to lose sight..What are we doing in our own backyard? People are hungry around us. We need to change the environmental conditions in our own city.

Some of these global conditions may never end and to want to only solve those global issues is such a lofty goal.

Not saying that it is impossible, but remember the power of the “small.”

ONE person can make a difference. We can change ONE city at a time. If we help ONLY one person, we’ve already made a difference.

“Think globally, act locally”

Polite Company

“It’s never a good idea to discuss religion or politics with people you don’t really know.” Agree or disagree?

“I just do not understand how people can believe that a Supreme God created this Earth especially when . . .”

“Let’s just not talk about this. You should never talk about religion because it just causes too much controversy.”

Many conversations with my friends in regards to religion and politics seem to begin and end like this. It is as if there is an imaginary line, that someone decided would be dangerous to cross and as I sit here and try to think about why this exists, I am still amazed.

Why doesn’t anyone want to talk about the touchy subjects? What are we SO afraid of?

People can spend hours debating why such and such person is attractive or why so and so did not deserve to win American Idol, but religion and politics are suddenly different.

Maybe it is the intensity and passion that these two things evoke, but if we truly believed in something we should be able to explain why we believe it and be able to listen to someone who disagrees. Having conversations like this allows for us to learn and develop our faith and ideas.

In the end of a discussion, we do not have to agree with the person. We do not have to change our beliefs. But we should be able to again decide for ourselves, if we still believe what we believe after being questioned.

Although in an ideal situation, all discussions on politics and religion would end well, but that is not always the case. Many conversations end with the loss of a friend or even worse, deep hatred and resent. Some people even go as far as causing physical harm.

I wish we could receive the benefits of an ideal situation with thoughtful and peaceful discussion because the end results are truly valuable.

Because I was always taught that religion is something that is powerful and shouldn’t be questioned, I lived the majority of my life in fear and mainly in ignorance. I was told and taught to believe something, that at that time I did not believe in my own heart. Overtime, as I began to question myself and have discussions, I began to truly believe in my heart my religion and began to embrace it for who I was and for what it was.

In the end we just have to decide: Are we willing to take the chance…

Other Blogs on this topic:

http://hastywords.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/arsenic-words/

http://evankropp.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/daily-post-polite-company/

More info on topic:

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/daily-prompt-polite-company/

College blues.

As you can imagine, applying to college is both exciting and frustrating. There are so many places out there, that I can see myself prospering and having a good time and as a result, I have ended up applying to about ten schools!

To be completely honest, ten schools is a lot and it is quite frustrating when application fees are up to about $60 for many of the schools.

Despite this, I have compiled a list of tools to help out others who are currently applying to college or are planning on applying in the future.

1. Do not wait until school begins to start applying! Start thinking about schools in the summer before senior year and check to see if schools offer any special visit programs.

2. After compiling a list of interested schools, make an excel sheet that lists all the deadlines and requirements for each school.

3. After making an excel sheet, start talking to your college counselor and informing her of all the deadlines! Also do not be afraid to just walk in and start a conversation especially since many schools require a counselor recommendation.

4. Do not wait until the deadline to finish essays. Try to finish your essays at least a week before they are do and try to send all your stuff early!

5. After you apply to schools begin looking at scholarships both within the school and outside of the school.

6. Don’t slack off senior year, but at the same time do not stress! Have a comfortable year and just sit back and wait until you receive your decisions. Whatever happens in the end, be happy 🙂

“Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile.”

I have been doing a lot of traveling lately to places such as Maine and Ohio. The colors there are absolutely amazing: lots of yellow, greens, oranges, and reds. Fall is coming and I do not think I have ever been as excited as I am now.

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” – Albert Einstein






 
 

City girl in a rural world?

I’ve always had this conflict within me. I was born and raised in the city. I love the city and all that it has to offer: Lots of concerts, opportunities, beautiful apartments, and endless people.

Yet, despite all these opportunities, I truly cherish the openness and small communities of more rural areas. Mountains, forests, natures, farms. All these things really call out to me and ultimately, I can see myself living in both types of places.

The idea of location has become of an even larger importance as I begin my college search. What kind of place do I want to learn in?

Also, with my dream of becoming a farmer, I wonder if I would have to give up my roots. All of these were some of the thoughts that clouded my mind, which is why when I came across the Eagle Street Farm, I was more excited!

Annie Novak, an urban farmer, started a rooftop farm ontop of a building in New York. Not only does she have an amazing view of the skyline, but her farm has chicken and bees!

It occurred to me that you do not necessarily have to give up the city life in order to make a difference in the local communities. Cities also have a duty in becoming more sustainable and I have noticed that Atlanta has also been trying to make a difference. With the increased popularity of farmers’ markets, urban gardens, and food trucks, it seems that most people are becoming more committed to supporting the local economy.

These thoughts and ideas are becoming to spark more inspiration as I began to think about my future and my contribution to the world, especially after I graduate. Who knows? Maybe I’ll have my own rooftop garden!

Can we find peace?

Many regions of the world today seem to be involved in a chaotic turmoil. As I sit here at my desk writing this post, I cannot help but be grateful for all that I have now. After catching up on the news and reading all that has been happening in Syria, I am bewildered and a little ashamed. To be completely honest, I have not been keeping up with the conflict as well as I should have and I had no idea that this conflict is not something that has recently happened but rather something that has been going on for about a year and a half. Despite my ignorance, I realize the necessity for proper actions to be taken and the necessity to stay informed.

As this conflict is going on, I cannot help but remember the special day that occurs on Friday: International Day of Peace.

“I urge everyone, between now and 21 September, to think about how they can contribute. Let us work together to ensure that the Road from Rio leads us to sustainable development, sustainable peace… and a secure future for all.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Although I know this peace may not happen instantly, I think it is a goal that we should all work toward. Despite the numerous factions that may divide us, the humanitarian that we have for one another should remain common.

Dangers of freedom?

America is known as the land of freedom where people are given the opportunity to have freedom of speech, religion, etc. Never have I thought that something seen as such an unquestionable right that people should have, could be such a problem.

As many of you know, the Innocence of Muslims video has been circulating around and causing numerous protests.

One discussion that we’ve been having in my government class, is why hasn’t Youtube removed this video and should they remove it? Although Youtube allows users to flag inappropriate videos, this video is still up online almost a week later.

I cannot help but wonder, can we exercise our freedoms too much? Are there any limits? To many, this video is a prime example of the freedoms that we have and should not be taken down due to the fact that he has the ability and freedom to say and post what he likes without getting into legal troubles.

Although legal precautions seem to be taken, they are mostly due to the fact that the director used fraud to get actors and violated his probation.

I still feel like something should be done with this video. It has caused so many problems already, but then again there are numerous stupid things on the internet.

What do you guys think? Should this video be taken down?

Remembering 9/11

As I sit here today at my desk, I begin to think about the turn of events that occurred on September 11,2001. While only in elementary school, I remember feeling pain, although I could not fully understand the situation. It was not until I got older that I was able to realize the full extent of what happened.

As a child, terrorism meant nothing to me. . .now this word seems to get thrown around constantly.

Because of the sensitivity of this event, quite naturally Americans have taken to making this day, a day of remembrance. While many people grieve over the lost of their loved ones, I seem to be at a lost. Sadly, today no words were spoken and no silence was held for this event at my schoo and I am beginning to wonder if we have become too numb to the point where we are forgetting monumental events.

It seems as though many people continue to go back into the flow of their natural lives with no attention being paid to something that happened eleven years ago. I could be looking at this the wrong way and instead it could show that Americans have resilience, but even with this resilience have we become fearless? Have we become closer as a community? Speeches made by many today, including President Obama, speak of the positivity in this event and how it has made our nation more unified than ever. But I cannot help but wonder, what exactly is unifying us?

Is this unification coming from peace or fear? Have we become understanding or just xenophobic?

To add to this anniversary, Mohamed al Zawahiri, brother of al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri, offered a proposal. Mohamed, recently released from jail, has come to be a mediator between Islamists and the West. Receiving his credibility from islamists and the trust of the government, he has developed a peace proposal in hopes of creating better relations between Islamists and the West.

The proposal, among many, asks for US to stop intervening in muslim land, muslim education, to end war on Islam, and to release Islamist prisoners.

The proposals also asks for Islamists to stop attacks on west, protect western interests in muslim lands, and to not provoke west territories.

Due to the history of events and our relationship with Islamists, I think it will be interesting to see how the US moves forward in regard to this proposal and our response. In terms of abiding by rules to any proposal, it is always tough to know the legitimacy of the other party and their trust to abide by the terms, but nevertheless our response will be a true testimony to rather or not we have truly grown as a country and as to rather or not we have become more understandable.