Balance September 2017 - 36

You can change the

Do you avoid
watching or
reading the
news because
it leaves
you feeling
depressed? Well
it may be time
to take action
instead...

words by
B ER NADET TE
RU S SELL
illustration by
VIOLETA NOY
36

S

tories help us to understand the
world, each other, and ourselves;
they foster compassion. And,
I must say, I'm a collector and
teller of stories. As the gifted
poet Ben Okri put it: 'Stories can conquer fear, you
know. They can make the heart bigger.'
His words are particularly pertinent now. Take
the news for a moment. I've lost count of the times
I have heard bright, brave people say they have
'stopped reading the news' due to intense feelings
of anxiety. Why? Because we hear, read and see
24 hour rolling stories about war, famine,
disasters, human cruelty and injustice, and are
told these stories without hope or proposed
solutions. It's overwhelming. We get scared.
We think: what's the point? It's disempowering
and has a detrimental effect on the state of
everyone's mental health. It does little to
improve any of the problems we face.
But there are other, lesser-told stories, harder
to find, but out there, in abundance. Stories about
incredible acts of kindness, about grass-roots

BA LA N CE September 2017

movements popping up in communities all over
the world, groups of people or individuals taking
on a problem and making a start to change it;
stories of people who have changed laws, saved
lives, who have changed the course of history.
Then there are the stories about active citizenship
rather than passive consumerism; about people
standing up, not standing by. These are the
epic stories of the times we live in. Revolutionary,
radical and transformative.

REVOLUTION IN THE MAKING
Of course there are plenty of battles still to fight for
human equality, harmony and unity. We have to
find a way of thriving without damaging the earth.
We have enormous challenges ahead of us. We
always have had, and we've got this far.
So here's the good news. You can change the
world. Yes, you. You can make a real difference
to your small part of the world and, by doing so,
positively affect the larger world around you.
Better still, by doing so, you will be less afraid
and have more hope and happiness.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Balance September 2017

Balance September 2017 - 1
Balance September 2017 - 2
Balance September 2017 - 3
Balance September 2017 - 4
Balance September 2017 - 5
Balance September 2017 - 6
Balance September 2017 - 7
Balance September 2017 - 8
Balance September 2017 - 9
Balance September 2017 - 10
Balance September 2017 - 11
Balance September 2017 - 12
Balance September 2017 - 13
Balance September 2017 - 14
Balance September 2017 - 15
Balance September 2017 - 16
Balance September 2017 - 17
Balance September 2017 - 18
Balance September 2017 - 19
Balance September 2017 - 20
Balance September 2017 - 21
Balance September 2017 - 22
Balance September 2017 - 23
Balance September 2017 - 24
Balance September 2017 - 25
Balance September 2017 - 26
Balance September 2017 - 27
Balance September 2017 - 28
Balance September 2017 - 29
Balance September 2017 - 30
Balance September 2017 - 31
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Balance September 2017 - 33
Balance September 2017 - 34
Balance September 2017 - 35
Balance September 2017 - 36
Balance September 2017 - 37
Balance September 2017 - 38
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Balance September 2017 - 40
Balance September 2017 - 41
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