I was working on the elliptical machine when the BBC began flashing their BREAKING NEWS headline. Turns out it was a jewel heist, replete with photos of a shattered vault, and bored tunnels through concrete. It was the kind of romantic headline we had when I was a kid.
A basic jewel theft, probably by a cat burglar, a simple enough crime, soon to be solved by Batman, Spider-man or Remington Steele.
Our headlines today are Ebola pandemics, ISIS throwing homosexuals off rooftops, flesh-eating bacteria, Boko Haram kidnapping schoolgirls to be sex slaves, and possible nuclear annihilation. So forgive me for feeling a little romantic for the days when the headlines were about robberies and ballplayers cheating on their spouses.
But of course the word wasn’t really so simple even 50 years ago. We’d survived two devastating world wars, the major superpowers were on the brink, and here in the States our president had been assassinated. We still had tribes that hated each other, there were still dishonest people and planes sometimes crashed.
The difference today is people can send fighter jets or missiles to attack the far-away people they don’t like; the internet can spew hate worldwide in an instant, and the population has doubled, with all of the challenges that come from that. The religious zealots seem scarier, the hate levels seem higher, and chemical, biological and nuclear weapons are proliferating in the hands of some very frightening people. To top it all off, we have a datasphere that can instantly report every bad and negative calamity that happens anywhere on the globe real time, 24/7.
Who can blame a guy (or gal) for pining away for a simpler time?
Alas, we don’t have that luxury. So what is a person with prosperity consciousness to do, when faced with a world of mayhem and destruction, which seems hell-bent on self-destruction? How does one win against such seemingly insurmountable odds?
Prosperity begins with you.
You can start by living rich. Wake up with gratitude, celebrate life and cherish the people and moments around you. Get the money thing out of the way. Find ways to serve, not because you’re obligated to, but because you desire to.
People who are hurting are hard-pressed to help the afflicted. Become successful yourself. Get your own needs met. Please. Live rich.
Then view the world with compassion, live by the principle of fair exchange, but try your best to out-give the universe.
Say ‘thank you.’
Speak for those who can’t speak for themselves.
Take care of the street musicians and the buskers.
Forgive everyone. Including yourself.
Support the arts. Lots of them.
Show gratitude for the soldiers that protect your country.
Have lunch in the park.
Send someone flowers.
Respect the elderly.
Give someone a hug.
Schedule a sunrise viewing.
Find a charity you believe in and support it.
Allow dignity and rights to every human you meet.
These actions may seem simple, almost inconsequential to the challenges we face. But that’s the only way we make the world a better place: One person at a time, beginning with ourselves.
So when the headlines seem darker and the situation seems dire, I travel back to my days at Unity on the Bay, where we ended each service holding hands and singing “The Peace Song,” written in 1955 by Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller. It begins and ends, the same way:
Let there be peace on earth,
And let it begin with me.
Because one thing is certain: No matter how hard you may try – you can’t out-give the universe. Live rich and you’ll make the world richer for it.