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 Don't succumb to despair, there is hope for the future

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RR Phantom

RR Phantom

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Don't succumb to despair, there is hope for the future   Vide
PostSubject: Don't succumb to despair, there is hope for the future    Don't succumb to despair, there is hope for the future   Icon_minitimeFri Dec 28, 2012 11:48 pm

Dear Editor,

I am 16 years old. Some of my friends say that life sucks and there is no hope for the future. With all of the terrible things happening in the world I, too, am beginning to doubt. Tell me the truth … is there any hope?


Virginia, your friends are wrong. They have fallen victim to the despair that haunts our troubled times, a cynicism born of the suffering that results from hunger and disease, hatred and prejudice, and the destruction wrought by war and conflict. We cannot ignore these things, Virginia, for they are part of the everyday lives of so many people … but neither should we accept their inevitability, for to do so is to deny that we have the capacity to eliminate them.

In this great cosmos of ours, we are mere insects as compared to the boundless miracle about us, as measured against the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge. It is here that the future lies, Virginia … in the slow, stumbling steps that we take towards understanding this universe and our relationship to it. And within that future, within the limitless potential of our minds, there is the opportunity to overcome all that is wrong with our little world.

Yes, Virginia, there is hope. It exists in our imagination, in our curiosity, in the unceasing quest to expand the limits of what we know and understand. It exists in love and compassion and generosity and devotion, in all those things that give to life its highest beauty and greatest joy. You may find it in your family and friends, in art, music, literature, science, nature, or in any one of the thousands of moments that make up your daily life. It is there, Virginia … all you have to do is recognise it.

How dreary the world would be if there were no hope! Without it there would be no sense of purpose, for we would be frozen in time and space as all our dreams turned to dust. Listen to your friends by all means, but do not follow them blindly. To do that is to admit defeat and turn away from the challenges that we face. Such a course of action would not find a path through the ongoing financial crises or seek answers to the many questions being asked about climate change. All it would do is acknowledge that we will be forever condemned to repeat the mistakes of the past.

I do not pretend that the journey is easy, Virginia, or short. Those terrible things that you and your friends see on a daily basis are a reminder that, despite the vast technological resources at our command, we are still a primitive people. Our actions are equivalent to those of children taking their first few clumsy steps in life. What is yet to come for the human race is so vast and unknowable that it is almost impossible to put into perspective. Perhaps it will help if you consider that all of man's recorded history on this planet is no more than a single grain of sand from all the beaches of the world. What, then, might lie ahead of us?

Think on that. Remember what has happened in your own lifetime and reflect on its wonders, on all that has been created in the age of your parents and grandparents. Then consider what future generations will make of our comparative barbarism.

Therein lies our hope, Virginia … in constantly striving to understand our problems and overcome them, in seeking solutions. There are men and women all over the world at this very minute who are striving to do exactly that.

Our relatively unformed, brutish minds must develop in order to accommodate different cultures and beliefs, to accept the essential right of every child to have the opportunity to achieve the very best that life can offer.

Believe in that vision. Cling to it with every fibre of your being so that your friends, and the friends of your friends, can understand what it means and what we might become.

That is our future, Virginia. That is our hope.

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