Posted on June 15, 2011
Filed Under fast, relief & aid | Leave a Comment

Everyday I am traveling to and fro about Japan for meetings, research, deliveries etc. and in such I meet a lot of people. Lately, I have just been appalled at the lack of concern shown when the subject of the aftermath of the tsunami in Tohoku comes up. Just being caught up in ones own business and not taking the time to care and act would be something that I could understand. Not excusable but understandable.

However, last week as I was at a wedding at a church in Kyoto, I was talking with a young photographer. When I asked her what she had done for her brothers and sisters in Tohoku, she smirked and replied, "What are they to me? There is no reason for me to be concerned with them."….

I can recall few times in my life that I felt so sad. And to be honest, more so knowing the richness of life that she is missing… The flippant way she so casually dismissed them was actually the reason that I decided to go on this fast in hopes of shaking a few people out of their complacency. 

It reminds me of a simple yet powerful story* that i am sure that you have heard but let me share it with you again because it is so fitting.

Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, "It made a difference for that one.


Lets all open our hearts and think more like a child.


The world will be a better place for my babies.


*adapted from The Star Thrower?by Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)


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