As I type this:
• youth in Bahrain are getting shot by their government;
• Muammar Gaddafi is about to launch an attack on Benghazi;
• Japanese fear being poisoned by radiation, after part of their country was literally wiped off the face of the earth.
Oh and one more thing: some of the members of the Executive Committee of the Pretoria Hindu Seva Samaj are, once again, embroiled in gutter politics!
With everything that’s going on around the world, don’t you think it’s time that the Pretoria Hindu Seva Samaj reinvents itself?
Let’s not look at the rest of the world, what about right here in South Africa. We are grappling with service delivery issues; the education gap is widening and so is the gap between the rich and poor. That’s just a start. Our community cannot continue to think that it is immune to the challenges that face South Africa. South Africa’s problems are our problems! We cannot continue to do nothing to contribute real and meaningful solutions to them.
I travelled to South Africa last week. I had the (mis) fortune of spending 7 days in Laudium and it saddened me that all people could talk about was the Samaj and its politics. If they weren’t raging about the Executive, some people bemoaned the state of the organisation but shrugged their shoulders in desperation.
The key to fixing our state of affairs starts with us young people. What do we do to contribute to our society beside a very successful annual Hanuman Chalisa? We have had ample opportunities to show our elders that we can be an engaged youth who control our own future.
Last year we had could have collectively celebrated:
• the 2010 FIFA World Cup;
• 150 years of Indians in South Africa;
• 67 min of service for Mandela Day.
Nevertheless, these opportunities to showcase our community were lost.
Even if these platforms are considered too big, we could start small. We could probably start by cleaning Laudium’s CBD; or starting a sustainable project in Itirileng. Maybe even use our premises to start skills development training to anyone who is interested. We could facilitate lessons on spirituality. Sport could be another way of engaging with our youth. What about developing the sporting talent that already is abundant in our community? We could even start by participating in “Follow Fridays”. What about those that live abroad? We could use social networking sites to engage them too! The possibilities for us are endless! We, too can LeadSA.
In any democratic society, there will always be conflict. However, it is up to us to show our elders that these can be resolved internally, in a dignified manner.
Our community is in dire need for a change in its level of consciousness. That change MUST come now and it is up to us youth.
We are our community’s future, no matter where in South Africa (or the world) we live. If we continue to let our so called leaders lead us down a road of petty squabbles and irrelevant processes, we run the risk of becoming irrelevant ourselves. We cannot continue to follow and idolize people who lie to us. It is up to us to decide what legacy we leave behind. Just look at what’s happening in the Middle East.
We can either become an engaged organisation who is willing to recognise (as Neale Donald Walsch says) “that no one way is superior to another. That mine is not a better way but merely an alternative way.” Or we could continue doing the same things over and over again, expecting a different result each time. That my friends, is by definition insanity!