How many times have you read or heard the phrase, “Change the World”? A thousand? A hundred-thousand? A million? A billion? Have we used it so much, over and over again, that there is no common understanding anymore of what this phrase means? I wonder.
Let’s try an experiment. I’m a teacher of English as a Foreign Language. I work at an international school in Chile as Head of the English Department and as a classroom teacher. I’m married to a wonderful woman, Gaby. I’m a son-in-law, a brother-in-law, an uncle, a brother, a reader, a writer, an optimist, a pessimist, a dreamer, a realist, a Democrat, a Republican, an inventor, a poet, a novelist, a spectator, a participant, a lover-of-peace, a negotiator, an independent thinker, a conformist, an educator, a student, etc. etc. etc.
Now, here’s the experiment: When I say, “Let’s Change the World”, do you have a clue what I might be talking about?
Now it’s your turn: You are who you are. When you say, “Let’s Change the World”, I have no clue what you’re talking about.
Both of us have to ask each other, “What do you mean?” Even if I lived with you, or you lived with me, you would still have to ask me what I was talking about, and vice-versa.
So, what’s my point? What am I driving at? Just this: There are a billion different ways to “Change the World”.
No, that’s wrong. There are actually as many different ways to “Change the World” as there are people in the world. Each one of us have the power to either positively or negatively affect the world we live in, each one of us, in our own unique way.
You don’t have to be named Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul, Mahatma Ghandi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, or Barack Obama, to change the world.
Likewise, you don’t have to be named Adolf Hitler, Osama Bin-Laden, or Genghis Khan either.
All of these people above, both the positive and negative examples, all have one thing in common: They all have an absolute, passionate, non-negotiable belief about something.
The formula for changing the world is really quite simple: Care deeply about something…
Care, in such a way, that it becomes your reason for living, your “Raison-de-etre”, your “Daseinsberechtigung”, your “Right of Existence”. Your achievements, for good or evil, will be written in the pages of world history.
Your achievements will also be written in the hearts and minds of the people whose lives you touch.
So, here’s my New Year’s Resolution: In 2011, I’m going to “Change The World”. I’m going to make the world a better place to live. I’m going to live my life, day by day, as if World Peace, World Harmony, World Equality, World Equity, as if all things wonderful, depend on how I live my daily life.
I challenge you, my friend and reader, to do the same. Further, I ask you to challenge all the people who you know, to do the same. And if you ask all the people who you know, to challenge all the people who they know, to do the same, to do the same, to do the same, then guess what dear friend?
You and I will have really achieved the deepest possible meaning of the phrase: “Change the World”. We will all be living in that wonderful world that no one believes is possible, but everyone secretly hopes for, in the deepest recesses of our souls, that place of purity that all humans possess.
Let’s begin today – no reason to wait for tomorrow – “let’s Change the World”!
Teacher of English as a foreign Language