Sunday, 20 March 2011

The Land of the Rising our thoughts

The land of the rising sun is indeed a land of contradictions. For all of its technological wizardry and sophistication, Japanese people lead relatively simple lives compared to their western counterparts - of this,  I have personal experience.

Ancient traditions are intertwined with contemporary living.

Complexity is juxtaposed to minimalism.

Despite the recent devastation in Japan and the horrific ongoing threat of nuclear contamination - social order, dignity and respect persist– qualities that were sadly lacking in many parts of New Orleans post Cyclone Katrina. Is this civilised response by the Japanese to the current catastrophic events an inheritant outcome of a collectivist, Buddhist society? Are the rights and increasing self-indulgence of individuals in Western societies impinging on the rights of others and the wellbeing of society as a whole?

“Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives.” Oscar Wilde.

Australian medical scientists who have been monitoring radioactivity levels since the 1950’s found that nuclear explosions anywhere in the world are accompanied by an increase in the level of radioactivity in sheep fat – in Australia! Yes the world is indeed a global village. Horrifically, its food web continues to be contaminated by nuclear waste with a half-life of thousands of years. What is our biological “tolerance level” to radioactive waste?

May the world learn from the unfolding tragedy in Japan. It’s time for the political opportunists and spin-doctors to check, and if necessary, realign their moral compasses.

Our thoughts and prayers are with friends, “family” and strangers in Japan.

“In all things it is better to hope than despair” Goethe

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