“For the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world.” – Gautama Buddha
It is already February, and 2017 is well underway. People in many parts of the world are getting ready to celebrate St. Valentine’s Day. Valentine’s day was originally established to commemorate the martyrdom of two Christian saints (St. Valentine of Rome and St. Valentine of Terni). Over the years, the holiday gradually became a celebration first of romantic love, and then of all love. A glance at available Valentine’s Day greeting cards shows options for spouses, partners, friends, siblings, children, and even pets.
It is important to love and appreciate those who are close to us. Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and almost every tradition encourage us to love all those we encounter as well. Putting others before ourselves is a key element of love, from romantic relationships to parental relationships to random acts of kindness done for strangers. There are many ways to show love to those around us, but how do we show love to the greater community around the world?
Developing countries and small islands around the world already feel the devastating effects of climate change. In American Samoa and the U.S. Virgin Islands, residents deal with the daily realities of sea level rise and drought, not to mention the resulting high prices, food insecurity, and economic downturn. The Marshall Islands are in desperate need of reliable fresh water, something with which Californians dealt for several recent years. How can we help these people in need?
OTE’s mission is to bring relief to impoverished people around the world in the form of clean drinking water, fossil-fuel free electricity, and fresh, sustainable food sources. We plan to start in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where our application to become a Qualified Facility was recently approved. We also have projects in our pipeline that will change the lives of millions of people in American Samoa, the Philippines, The Bahamas, and more.
Whether you are a corporation or an individual, you can show love to both the Earth and those affected by climate change. Learn about the impact that a meat-based diet has on our environment, and consider consuming more plant-based foods. Read about the daily sustainable steps taken by celebrities like Ed Begley, Jr. and Cameron Diaz, and incorporate them into your own life. Look for ways that you can help the private and public sectors partner together to combat climate change.
Above all, try to be more aware of the people and nature around you. In both cases, a little kindness goes a long way.
This article appeared in OTE’s February 2017 newsletter. Go here to sign up for our newsletter.