Monday, March 22, 2010

World WATER Day and a Rilke Poem

I found this poetic vision at a site for the Rilke poem which I posted below here Notice the SUNlight. I end this post with a photo that also offers light.

(By the way, looking for other items related to human rights and health? Scroll right below...)

The Baglihar hydroelectric dam on the river Chenab from Indian-controlled Kashmir into Pakistan

The Chenab, fed with glacial meltwaters from the Himalayas, has for centuries supplied essential irrigation for the area. However, last summer farmers began to notice the levels of both the river and groundwater begin to fall significantly.

The crisis in the agricultural heartland of Pakistan apparently relates (at least in large part) to the Chenab, one of a series of waterways that bisect the Punjab, which means 'five rivers'.

Crucial, coveted and increasingly scarce, water has been growing scarce for farmers in Pakistan's breadbasket. How might peacemakers in both India and Pakistan and perhaps "Water Activists" make a peaceful change for the better? Local farmers (especially in a breadbasket) SORELY need and deserve water. What would we want done for us if we were in their shoes? What is happening with one of the most important rivers in the world and in the subcontinent?

A group of more than 20 different UN bodies and many other groups have been warning that the world may be close to its first water war. They have been trying to inform the world that water is tied to the crises of climate change, energy and food supplies and prices, and troubled financial markets. We have been and ARE being solemnly warned that unless the links with water are addressed in all these other major issues and water crises around the world are resolved, other crises may intensify. Local water crises ARE worsening already and beginning to converge
into a global water crisis. Let's all do our part to prevent this crisis from leading to even more political insecurity and conflict.

I for one am solemnly pledging to add WATER to one of my concerns, prayers and actions for peace. What can we do around home? What might we do to get the word out and to support those who need water (and CLEAN water as well) - both locally and globally?

Be sure to see these amazing, beautiful and some heart-wrenching photos (the one with the child drinking from outdoor faucet looking SO thirsday reminded me to save the water from an indoor drip until I could get it fixed) here

Now, some of the readers to this humble little attempt at a peaceblog may notice that I'm slowly trying to nurture who I am as well as what I seek to do. Who I am at heart is a Poet and Contemplative as well as a free-lance writer and peace organizer/activist. So more and more I want to include the poetic, contemplative and artistic aspects I most honor. I for one ALSO need those elements to "get the job done" more effectively and more joyfully over time.

So, here on WORLD WATER DAY I offer some SPIRITUAL WATER to nurture our deepest center. I offer Rilke to GIVE us courage in our efforts for peace, concern for basic needs for the least powerless and for the sustainability of the world's wounded resources. This poem was sent out by an amazing friend - a Pakistani woman who works daily and untiringly for the voiceless and powerless. She is my Heroine! and Rilke has always been among my favorite poets:

(The following also found in Rilke’s Book of Hours: Love Poems to God, translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy)

God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.

These are words we dimly hear:

You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Embody me.

Flare up like flame
and make big shadows I can move in.

Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don't let yourself lose me.

Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousnes.

Give me your hand.

~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~

Final Note: I wrote a poem a long time ago called "Water Against Rocks" which is STILL today an important metaphor for me about how peace and water work with rocks and walls and people over time and how important not to give up...nor to think that we can function without process, art, nature or help from "other" Divine resources.
Today can be our best first step toward peace and for water improvement for generations. Let's multiply who we ARE and what we DO by millions. Then let's multiply that by future generations to see how effective we really are with LOVE!

Photograph by Scottyboipdx Weber

The sun sets over Lower Lewis River Falls in Washington State’s Gifford Pinchot National Forest in the USA. "The falls mark a wild and scenic stretch of the river, but other sections of the Lewis, which drains the state’s mighty Cascade Range, boast large dam and reservoir systems.Hydroelectric plants produce power, but they’ve changed the river’s natural character—to the special detriment of migratory fish like salmon. Utilities have agreed to begin trucking fish around the dams along the Lewis River, moving them from below these looming barriers to prime habitat upstream, above the dams." (credit to National Geographic and Huff Post)

See more photos and videos at here And below...



Mahsa Mohammadi said...

You've got a nice blog !
Along with being nice, it reveals your care about humanity and the subjects regarding that ! i admire :)

Beautiful poem .. I loved it !
"don't let yourself lose me!" .. I adore this part !

Thank you !

Connie L. Nash said...

You are so very welcome, Mahsa, and thanx so much for stopping by!

Yes, we do share SO much in common: spirituality, peace, care for humanity.

I look forward to more from you as well! :)


Connie L. Nash said...

This just came in on a very caring list of people:

UN: Polluted water killing, sickening millions
By RONALD BERA, Associated Press Writer
March 22, 2010
NAIROBI, Kenya – More people die from polluted water every year than from all forms of violence, including war, the U.N. said in a report Monday that highlights the need for clean drinking water.
The report, launched Monday to coincide with World Water Day, said an estimated 2 billion tons of waste water — including fertilizer run-off, sewage and industrial waste — is being discharged daily. That waste fuels the spread of disease and damages ecosystems.

"Sick Water" — the report from the U.N. Environment Program — said that 3.7 percent of all deaths are attributed to water-related diseases, translating into millions of deaths. More than half of the world's hospital beds are filled by people suffering from water-related illnesses, it said.

"If we are not able to manage our waste, then that means more people dying from waterborne diseases," said Achim Steiner, the U.N. Undersecretary General and executive director of UNEP.

The report says that it takes 3 liters of water to produce one liter of bottled water, and that bottled water in the U.S. requires the consumption of some 17 million barrels of oil yearly.

Improved wastewater management in Europe has resulted in significant environmental improvements there, the UNEP said, but that dead zones in oceans are still spreading worldwide. Dead zones are oxygen-deprived areas caused by pollution.

"If the world is to thrive, let alone to survive on a planet of 6 billion people heading to over 9 billion by 2050, we need to get collectively smarter and more intelligent about how we manage waste, including wastewaters," Steiner said.

For one, I KNOW we need to protest SHELL corporation with all the polluting they've been doing in Africa and beyond...

Ask Frontline to END sponsoring them!

Akhtar Wasim Dar said...

Water, the basis of existence, which also creates a balance in our fluidity is God’s miracle number one on this earth. Water is not just a commodity it is also a grand idea of abundance, beauty, power, grace, balance and specially life. People who wants to control this on basis on nations, boundaries and petty mentality are doing this at the cost of strangulating the grand idea that water stands for. Pakistan is facing an acute water shortage due to some unwise strategic manipulations on the other side of the boarder, they can do that but at their own peril as Water is not just a commodity it is Nature’s miracle number one and we Humans cannot decide the course of nature. Sooner or later it will take its own…

Connie L. Nash said...

Akhtar Wasim Dar Sahib, the way you so seemlessly put together the above comment was encouragement to me to keep trying to do the same...

More and more I want to write and form "pieces" of work which puts together, like you just did, the "grand idea" with the real...the real past current & possible future scenarios...for the challenge we each need, for the beauty which nurtures and for the community and love we all share in the Collective Ego, the One Heart for Peace and Fairness...

And with the grace that flows authentically from gratitude to our Divine Creator for each drop of water, for each morsel of bread and WANTS the same deeply for every human being living in each and every nation and island..and for each of the little ones who are to come...

With deep and heartfelt gratitude, Dar Sahib, for your balance, peace and clear sight!

Connie L. Nash said...

The Story of Bottled Water (2010) The Story of Bottled Water, released on March 22, 2010 (World Water Day) employs the Story of Stuff style to tell the story of manufactured demand—how you get Americans to buy more than half a billion bottles of water every week when it already flows from the tap...

Thanx to Steve Livingston's sister and to Steve for passing this along. See his website: StereoMan and his offering of a Hubble Photo per day. Also see The Global Report Online for whom he is an Editor.

shakeel said...

i like picture on top as its speaks more than i can understand the poem:

Connie L. Nash said...

I love the picture as well...better than even a mere photo for a dreamer, eh? :)

Sometime we can maybe discuss the poem or your favorite ones?

Thanx for coming by...more in a few days maybe...?

Connie L. Nash said...

Anyone who comes by, plz welcome my new young Pakistani friend whom I invited to RR. He is a gem for peace and the nation... in so many will see.