Benjamin Creme announces the start of Maitreya's open work on video.
Benjamin Creme discusses the emergence of Maitreya, The World Teacher
by the Master , through Benjamin Creme, 12 May 2010
Without doubt, this is a time of major importance to humanity. The decisions made by men now will decide, in large measure, the whole future of this planet. Future generations will marvel at the apparent ease with which so many today slough off concern for the world’s ills: millions starve and die of want in a world blessed with a huge surplus of food; millions more are always hungry and undernourished. Many know this to be true yet do nothing. How can this be? What prevents their action? The basis of this inaction is complacency, the source of all evil in the world. Complacency has its roots in the crime of separation which pulls men apart and prevents the flowering of Brotherhood.
Men soon must realize this truth or perish. Brotherhood is both
an idea and the fact of our planetary life. Without the reality
of Brotherhood as the basis for all action, man’s every effort
would come to nothing.
Men are about to experience a profound truth, an awareness of their essential Being. For most, it will come as an experience of rebirth to a state long lost in the distant past. Each, in his own way, will feel redeemed, made new, cleansed and purified. The joy and beauty of Brotherhood will thrill through their Being, and each will see themselves as a part of that beauty and love.
Q. You have said that Maitreya has appeared 16 times (as of 12 June
2010) already in television interviews. Did He always use the same
name? Did He appear in the mayavirupa [a self-created physical body]
made in the Himalayas?
Q. Why does He not use His own name?
If Maitreya comes incognito He knows that people will be responding to His ideas; they will be responding because they want for the world what He is advocating for the world and not because it is the World Teacher Himself Who is saying these things.
Q. On 26 March 2010, a South Korean warship was sunk
close to the North-South Korean maritime border. The South
Korean investigation into the cause of the sinking has
concluded that a torpedo fired from a North Korean submarine
was to blame. The US and other governments have condemned
North Korea, but the North claims that so-called evidence
was deliberately planted and strongly denies any involvement.
Did a North Korean submarine really fire the torpedo?
Q. You say that the Day of Declaration will
happen throughout the world simultaneously? Will it be
during the daytime? At night? Will it be the same time
whether it is day or night in some places?
Q. Was the Master Who appeared in Tokyo, at your lectures,
Q. I have noticed an increase of contrails in the skies
of Orange County, California, USA. Actually, they seem
to fit the definition of chemtrails, as the jets circle
back to leave criss-cross patterns of expanding clouds
in the sky. (1) Is this the US government trying to keep
control over the populace after the Day of Declaration?
(2) Or are these a sign of Maitreya’s emergence?
Q. When asked what he thought of Western civilization,
Gandhi reportedly answered: “It would be a good idea.” (1)
May I ask what you think of the current state of the US
healthcare system? (2) Is universal healthcare a feasible
goal – not only in the USA, but in each country?
Q. Regarding the Lisbon Treaty which was ratified on
1 January 2009. According to spoken and documented evidence,
does this mean that the UK no longer has a constitution
as we know it? Many are saying that the European Union
is now a base for a communist dictatorship, whereby the
people have no say in their voting referendums or in their
constitutional rights. That all these things are just a
mock smoke screen to appease the majority of the populace.
Does Mr Creme and/or his Master lend any credence to this?
Q. How can Japan and other developed countries help
Q. Does Japan possess nuclear weapons?
The heart of the matter
On 20 March 2010 we had a table at a peace rally in San Francisco. An older man stopped by the booth early in the day and looked at our materials but didn’t say anything: the amplified noise of the rally was deafening and in that milieu it was impossible to carry on a conversation. He was of medium height, somewhat heavy set, with wispy gray hair, but with a jolly countenance, a bit like Kris Kringle. He was dressed in what looked like baggy army surplus clothes, with a heavy khaki coat even though the day was warm. As he walked away he turned to give me a direct and playful smile, like an old friend taking pleasure in a shared secret. I wondered if I’d met him somewhere before and had forgotten.
He came back at the end of the afternoon and we talked to him about Share International and the Emergence. While we were talking he was continually fussing with a wad of various papers stuffed into the outside pocket of his coat. When I looked I saw that one of the papers was an Emergence Quarterly that he had folded to show the Master’s Article: ‘Man’s Emerging Divinity’. As part of our conversation we talked about our upcoming event, a lecture on UFOs and their mission to be given at Easter by one of our co-workers. He said he was from Eugene, Oregon, and only in town for another week, but as there is a Transmission Meditation group there, we invited him to sign our mailing list, if he would like to be in touch with other people who think about things in this way. As he picked up the pen to sign, out of the blue he said: “The problem with people is complacency.”
This was most unexpected. At the beginning of the rally we had been wondering what had happened to the peace movement in the US since Obama’s election, that the turnout for this rally was so small. Several hours later in a seemingly off-hand remark this visitor answered our question. Again, as he walked away, he turned and smiled at me with a conspiratorial look of warmth and humor, as if to say: “How was that?”
Was this visitor someone special?
F.F., San Francisco, USA.
At 9pm on 24 April 2010 my husband happened to be looking at the moon whilst at the kitchen window when he spotted an orange light in the sky. He called me over and we watched as a bright orange ball travelled east to west over the houses opposite ours. Its movement was very purposeful, in a straight line, and then it disappeared before our eyes. The whole sequence lasted only a few moments, but left us with a warm and uplifting feeling. What was this bright orange light?
C.G., London, UK.
Three of us, Armel, André and my wife Marie-Jo, were visiting the East London Mosque near Brick Lane in November 2009. We were welcomed in by a young black girl with a Muslim scarf. She showed us the prayer hall and gave us a few explanations. While she was doing this, an Indian-looking man, of average height, came near us and offered to help. But the young girl assured him she could cope and I also politely declined his offer. We stayed then only a few minutes and the man disappeared into the building. Was he a Master?
A.B., Paris, France.
Many years ago in Laguna Beach I saw a man at a festival in a turban sitting with his back to me. As I looked at him, he turned with great purpose and looked right at me. As our eyes met, I saw what I can only describe as ‘wires’ between us with flashing lights going back and forth.
As I continued to walk around I was quite ‘out of it’. As we were leaving he seemingly appeared by my side in the crowd and looked down upon me and nodded. We said nothing. I was so comforted by his presence. I have been aware of the Master Morya. He had spoken through a woman years before I was born about my grandfather. I have never wanted to be presumptuous and assume he is near. I have always felt a connection however. I feel I am missing a certain connection at this point in my life. I am in need of guidance, any suggestions?
I have always felt my own path and have never been a big ‘joiner’.
D.A., Glendale, Arizona, United States.
Help at hand
(1) One morning in a coffee shop I saw a little old native woman with few teeth and gleaming eyes. I was at a rough point financially and afterwards found a wad of cash with the exact amount for my rent! Who was she?
(2) My car battery had died and no one was around when all of a sudden a really nice looking gentleman with yellowy eyes came forward to save the day. By his presence I knew he was special: a light-skinned black man with a little greying hair, odd clothes. We had no jumper cables so he took his battery out of his orange Plymouth and somehow started my car. Who was he? (3) I printed out the ‘hand’ of Maitreya sometime ago, and now I notice a face in the palm. Is that coincidence?
K.L., Scottsdale, Arizona, USA.
Meeting of minds
I was with my boss in a restaurant on 14 January 2010, we were eating lunch and talking about Jesus and spirituality. My boss is Christian and sometimes doesn’t see that we can have many ways to reach God. I just said what I feel and said: If Jesus is so high a being he certainly doesn’t see if we are Christians, Muslims, Atheists and so on. He just loves us as brothers. In that moment I saw a man, not so tall, but he seemed to me very “big”. He was looking into my eyes so fixedly. I was only thinking this is very weird, and that I didn’t see him before when we came in, and suddenly he was going out. From that moment our talking was different, my boss seemed to understand that Christianity isn’t the only way and also found out that I saw in my heart the same things as he did.
Was that person Master Jesus or Maitreya, or my experience was influenced by my soul which inspired me in that conversation?
N.M., Vendryne, Czech Republic.
Lost property service
I was waiting at a bus stop to go to work. As usual I walked up and down, looking in the shop windows. Suddenly, I noticed on the narrow window shelf of an ironmonger’s just by the bus stop, a glove, which looked to be carefully and neatly placed, just fitting the space. With a second look and a bit of a start I realized it looked just like mine – I felt in my pocket – and found I had only one glove. I took it out and it matched the other, it was indeed mine. I quickly put on the glove, slightly embarrassed. It was odd because I hadn’t passed that shop earlier and the night before had walked along the other side of the road. I had a fleeting sense that the glove had been placed there as if waiting for me to spot it in my usual morning waiting place. Could it be true that I had been helped, even about something so small, as I had been before with my absent-mindedness?
P.P., London, UK.
Statue of Jesus oozes honey
In a house in Sapopemba district of São Paulo, Brazil, the owner of a plaster statue of Jesus reports that the left eye of the statue has been oozing honey since 18 February 2010. A scientist who studied the statue believed the effect of the melting of the plaster was due to the recent very high temperatures, but he could not explain where the smell of honey came from. (Source: SI reader, Brazil)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms it is a miracle manifested by Maitreya.)
Indian girl cries tears of blood
A young Indian girl, Twinkle Dwivedi from Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India, has been crying tears of blood for the past two years. Blood flows from her eyes, head, and other parts of her body at certain times, but she feels no pain. So alarming was her appearance that she was kept out of school and her mother has tried everything to discover the source of the ‘illness’.
According to a programme aired in January 2010 on UK’s Channel 4 Television, which investigated the phenomenon, Ayurvedic doctors could find nothing wrong with her, the sacred ritual of bathing in the Ganges did not stop the bleeding, a spiritualist declared it was ‘evil spirits’ and an Indian Christian bishop denied the possibility of a ‘stigmata’ on the grounds that Twinkle knew nothing about Jesus and had no connection with the Christian church.
Finally, Dr George Buchanan, an American haematologist, endeavoured to solve the problem, searching for evidence of cuts, and analysing the blood. He and an Indian specialist established that Twinkle’s blood contained no abnormalities, and the effusion of blood was not her mother’s and that it matched Twinkle’s own blood type. He eventually came to the conclusion that he had no idea what was causing the phenomenon: “My heart tells me that this is truly something that I’ve never seen before. My head tells me as a physician scientist that in fact Munchausens’s syndrome by proxy [illness fabricated by parent] is the most likely diagnosis. But I’m going to keep an open mind.”
At no time during the programme was the word ‘miracle’ mentioned, nor was Twinkle herself prompted to give an explanation. (Source: Channel 4 Television, UK)
Writes Benjamin Creme: My information is that the girl’s extraordinary blood effusion was the result of a miracle performed on her by Maitreya, Who told her that it was going to happen, and reassured her not to worry, everything would be alright, she was not ill and it would do her no harm. It was made as a sign. However, Twinkle did not say so; perhaps she had forgotten the actual event. In any case, she carries on harmlessly, simply missing her lessons at school, but otherwise enjoying life.
(See also Share International, December 2009 issue, ‘Teenagers shed tears of blood’ for similar miracles performed by Maitreya and the Master Jesus.)
UFO cave art
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the ‘man’ in the drawing was from Mars. This cave art was painted 40,000 years ago.)
UFO sightings worldwide
A UFO was spotted over a busy street in Sydney, Australia, on 21 March 2010. Fiona Hartigan got out of her car on Sunday evening to take a few photographs of the sunset when she spotted a black object in the sky which began to move. “It started off about 800 metres away but it came closer, to about 400 metres, and then two other little round things appeared from this bright orange light above. There was no noise. It was calm and peaceful but it was very weird.” Ms Hartigan then saw the main UFO shoot away, with the smaller UFOs speeding off in the opposite direction. (Source: The Daily Telegraph, Australia)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms it was a spaceship from Mars.)
At around 12.30pm on 3 January 2010, Francisco Alvarado, his wife and four other relatives, were driving in the city of Metepec, Mexico. An 8-pointed star-shaped black object followed them above in the air, spinning as it moved. The car was travelling at 100km per hour and the object was following them at the same speed. When they stopped the car, the object also stopped and started again when they restarted the car. The couple managed to capture film of the object and it was reported on the Los Archivos de la Tierra website, and can also be seen on YouTube. It followed them for some time before “disappearing” in the clouds, according to Juana Flores, Alvarado’s sister-in-law, who said: “I never believed in UFOs and when I used to see them on TV I used to always say those people were crazy … but that’s changed now. I now believe there are UFOS – who knows how many.”
(Source: YouTube; losarchivosdelatierra)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that it was the ‘star’.)
There were a large number of UFO sightings around the end of 2009, many of which received substantial press and YouTube coverage.
Many of these sightings occurred across South America – including Peru, Argentina and Chile. The event receiving the most publicity occurred on 27 November 2009 in Salta, Argentina, where at 2am hundreds of witnesses saw a huge ‘mothership’ type UFO with studded lights flying above the city. There was a power cut in the city, according to witnesses, at the moment the UFO was seen to pass over the city’s power plant.
On 19 November 2009, at San Andresito, Bogotá, Colombia, a couple of “weird spots” appeared in the sky and called the attention of hundreds of passers-by. These spots were white and red in colour and they were aligned. After a few minutes, there were seven spots, which were visible for about one hour and were filmed by El Tiempo newspaper.
(Sources: El Tiempo, Colombia; ovnisalta.com.ar, citytv.com, Argentina; www.allnewsweb.com)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms these sightings were spacecraft from Mars and Venus.)
UFOs over the UK
Sightings of UFOs around Christmas were also reported in local UK media. On 29 December 2009 the Bolton News printed a story entitled ‘White lights sighting in the festive night skies’, describing sightings of UFOs in the area around the northern city of Bolton. A witness, ‘John’, from the nearby village of Edgworth, reported watching for 20 minutes two ball shaped white lights which “appeared to be playing with each other in a sort of sideways dancing motion, moving quite fast from side to side before disappearing.
On 27 December at 11.10pm Thomas and Lynne in the neighbouring village of Harwood reported “about six or seven lights dancing and chasing each other, visible on clouds as if projected from the ground but no beam of light was visible.” Later they saw four V-shaped objects “outlined in reddy-orange coloured lights” travelling across the sky.
The Welwyn Hatfield Times reported a UFO witnessed on Christmas day. Christian Joseph was visiting family in Welwyn, Hertfordshire, when he noticed a strange orange light at around 5.30pm. “I noticed what I thought was a firework/rocket shoot up into the sky from the direction of Lockleys Farm, in a right-to-left arch” he said. “It glowed a brilliant intense orange colour, and didn’t really look like any rocket I’d ever seen before.” He watched the object hang in the air “for about a minute” before it receded into the distance then disappeared. He added: “I’ve since wondered if it couldn’t been a Chinese lantern, but the way it accelerated up in a rocket-like arc makes me think not.”
The Bridlington Free Press also reported a Christmas Day sighting in its newspaper, which was backed up by contributors to the BBC Lincolnshire website. Ben Walker saw an orange ball in the sky travelling in a straight line from his sister’s garden in the afternoon. According to Mr Walker the object was “roughly quarter the size of the sun, but nowhere near as bright.” It “moved in a straight line for about a minute before turning at a right angle and heading into the distance.” Mr Walker said the object was travelling slower that a light aircraft might and “there was no wind so I don’t’ believe it was a Chinese lantern plus there was no upward movement, just lateral.” (Sources: The Bolton News, Bridlington Free Press, Welwyn Hatfield Times; UK)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms all these UK sightings were spacecraft from Mars.)
Gamini Obeysekera from Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka, reported the appearance of an unidentified object (just like a spacecraft) on 18 November 2009 about one kilometer in the sky just above the ancient Thivanka Buddha statue in the historical Polonnaruwa city in Sri Lanka.
He reported that it was “orange and blue in colour” and that the size of the object changed frequently. The object was clear in the moonlit evening.
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that it was a spacecraft from Mars.)
a selection of quotations on the theme of the ‘Aspiration’ from
from Maitreya the Christ,
Teachings – The Laws of Life),
Benjamin Creme’s Master (A
and Benjamin Creme’s writings. (An
Within the group wherein I dwell are those who know Me for what I am, but it is My intention to withhold for a certain time My true status. This will enable you to see Me as one of yourselves, a Man among men. Nothing which I do will seem extraordinary. Nothing which I say will be bizarre or strange. Simple indeed will be My approach. On this fact you may count.
As a Brother among brothers I shall speak for you all, voice aloud your aspirations and hopes; make known the desire of all men for a world at peace, for a just and noble readiness to share, for the creation of a society based on freedom and love. By My enunciation of these principles will you know and discover Me. (Maitreya, from Message No. 61)
Prepare, now, to see and build the future. Envision it enfolded in your highest aspiration. Learn to be detached amid the present chaos and add not your quota of fears to the encroaching dark. Nearer than you may think is the day of rejoicing; hatred, too, in time, runs its course.
Awaken, soon, to the new day. Polish, anew, each bright aspiration. A new light, the Light of the World, is now, once more, among you. Reveal the growing light which now enters each sentient being, and redress the imbalances of old.
We watch and wait and are with you. Each day brings Our presence closer to your ken. When you see Us you will know that the time to work together for the safeguarding of the race has arrived: no longer must “market-forces” blight man’s ascending path. No longer must cruel ambition hold sway over the lives of the people. Never again must millions starve in the midst of plenty. No more must the future of the young be sold above their heads. The future of freedom and justice beckons. (Benjamin Creme’s Master, from ‘The future of freedom and justice’)
Historically, the evolution of humanity would seem to be one of almost constant warfare, aggression and hatred. With the discovery of the atomic bomb we have perfected our ability to destroy each other in large numbers and at great distances. Is this destructiveness, then, the true, essential nature of man? And if not, why has he behaved so consistently as if it were?
The answer lies in man’s unique position in the evolution of the kingdoms on Earth, the meeting point of spirit and matter. Man, in essence, is an immortal soul, divinely perfect, immersed in matter. For long ages in the incarnational process, the inertia of the matter aspect precludes any significant expression of the soul’s perfection. Eventually, the innate aspiration of man draws him upwards and onwards until the two poles of his nature gradually come together and are resolved in total union.
Then the perfected man realizes that the dichotomy between spirit and matter – their apparent opposition – is only seeming, in fact, illusion. He sees that they are different aspects of one perfect, divine Whole.
The long struggle to reach this revelation generates the friction and fire necessary for the journey, his aspiration lights for him the way. Thus does man fulfil his destined role on planet Earth: the spiritualization of matter. (Benjamin Creme, The Art of Living)
All goes well, and soon My face and voice shall become known to you. May this manifestation release in you that aspiration which I know shines ever in your heart. May it be that you will accept Me and work closely with Me for your brothers. My major need today is for those who share My vision to accept the responsibility of action. Many millions there are in the world who know the need of man, who see that vision, but know not the urgency of the time. I rely on all those with a knowledge of your brothers’ needs, a sympathy for the sufferings of so many, and a will to change all that. May you be among those upon whom I may call, that together we can usher in a new and better world.
My heart responds to the tremor of your aspiration. My Love kindles that fire. My friends, fan that into a blaze and come with Me. Hold fast to your vision of what may be, and reveal the God within you all. (Maitreya, from Message No. 46)
Buddhi, or intuitive knowledge, is direct knowing: knowing directly without having to think about it. That outflow of buddhi takes place gradually when the human being aspires towards that which is higher than he or she already knows.
The purpose of books like the Alice Bailey or the Agni Yoga teachings is not simply to teach the academic relationships and structures which baffle so many people and are difficult to remember (although they are important to know). The Master Djwhal Khul, in the Alice Bailey teachings, is trying to awaken the intuition; to hold before our minds, and so stimulate our intuition, our aspiration, our idealistic faculty, the notion that there is above us as souls areas of being, of knowledge, of awareness, of which we are as yet unaware. (Benjamin Creme, Maitreya’s Mission Volume Two)
Aspiration is what drives us onwards and upwards. I think we know instinctively the difference between separate, individualistic ambition and a truly aspiring attitude. That attitude should be one of simplicity, and a recognition of the spiritual nature of life. That is what we are aspiring towards, a greater experience, consciously, of the spiritual nature of life.
Some people see it in religious terms. They want to know God better, to go to church more often, and there is nothing wrong with that. They experience there an inner stillness, an inner concentration of silence, of Beingness, which is God. That you can experience anywhere, you do not have to go to church. Aspiration is a word for the tendency of all evolving beings to become what we essentially are, which is God. Ambition is desire for a result and attachment to achieving that result. Aspiration is not desire at all. It is a response to a pull from above. That pull is the nature of life itself and it draws all creatures. It draws all humanity up towards what we are as souls: divine Beings, absolutely perfect reflections of God.
The soul has its seat in the body in a chakra at the right side of the chest. This is what gives the feeling we call aspiration. Aspiration can be on different levels, of course – mixed. In an emotionally polarized individual, it will be somewhat of an astral nature and therefore impure in that sense. Not impure in any derogatory sense, but impure in that it will be mixed. It will be both personal and impersonal. You can feel the difference. Where is it coming from? Is it coming from the solar plexus? Or is it coming from the heart chakra? There is a difference, you can feel it. If you feel it at the right side of the chest, it is aspiration. If you feel it at the solar plexus, it is emotional aspiration which will be, to some degree, glamour. But that is only a stage. Then we find that it will shift and it will be mixed. There will be a mixture of astral and heart response to the need of the world. And then we find that it will dwell in the heart only. (Benjamin Creme, Maitreya’s Mission Volume Two)
When I tell you that My feet have already walked the pavements of your cities, this, My friends, is the truth. Men are known to Me in the fullest sense: I know their hopes and fears. I know their longings and yearnings. I know their aspiration for good. Upon all of this I rely. Make it your avowed task to aid Me in My coming work. May it be that you become channels for My Love. In this way shall you fulfil your destiny, too. (Maitreya, from Message No. 73)
We are aware all the time of our physical needs, of what we call our emotional needs (which are less needed than we might think). We are aware to a much lesser degree of the mechanism of our mind and how that takes a hand in this evolutionary process. As Sons of Mind, we develop through the evolution of our minds, the consciousness of the mental plane. It is through idealism and aspiration that the human being evolves, developing mind. It takes will, a mental decision, to do this. We cannot do this simply by wanting to do it. …
The path for humanity is the path of the development of mind. That brings in the will and only by a conscious effort. It is the harder of the two ways. The way of the deva is relatively easy, for them a way of no resistance at all.
We, humanity, are tackling the path of most resistance because we are working in the unknown. We are trying to develop from below an aspect which can only come from above. This involves aspiration and it is precisely aspiration, idealism, which controls the evolutionary process. We evolve as we aspire. We may think, perhaps, that aspiration stops at a certain point. It does not. The Masters aspire. There is no one anywhere in creation who does not aspire. When we think of aspiration, we tend to think of feeling: ‘‘I feel I would like to be better!’’ Every year we make resolutions at New Year to give up smoking or to drink less and so on. Every year we make this list of resolutions, and, of course, if we kept them we would evolve so quickly! But the making of resolutions does not get us to the third initiation. They are only a symbol for the kind of aspirational idealism which is required to make the journey of evolution as a human being. (Benjamin Creme, Maitreya’s Mission Volume Two)
Soon, the world will see the return to the world of the Elders of the race, the Knowers, the Sons of God. Prophecy has foretold Our advent and quickened the expectancy of the disciples, but many such sleep soundly, oblivious to the happenings of the time. There are many who await Our coming with aspiration but envisage it in a far future time. Know they not that Our hand knocks now upon the door? Awake, friends! Awake, workers for the good! We need all who would work with Us to transform the world. We need your aspiration, your joy. Your hope and trust We cherish. Make ready to see Us and to welcome Us into your lives. (Benjamin Creme’s Master, from ‘A call to service’)
At last, the thought is dawning on the race that the future is not the bleak doom they had supposed and feared. A new light, Maitreya’s light, has brought new hope to mankind, enabling old divisions to be seen afresh, and to be broached in a spirit of co-operation and mutual trust.
This new spirit is fast gaining ground, and, despite the efforts of the Earth’s destructive forces to seize each opportunity to create disorder, a major change has taken place, a new high point has been won.
It will not be long till the yearning of men is answered, their needs addressed, their aspiration given voice. Soon, for themselves, the people of the world will recognize that their Elder Brothers are among them, that Their leader, too, is present, that Their light cannot be extinguished, and that, for all the signs to the contrary, the new Era of Righteousness is being fashioned now. (Benjamin Creme’s Master, from ‘The Era of Righteousness’)
My friends, I am nearer to you than you could know, for I sit within the heart of all those who love their brothers, of all those who wish to share and release the light of Justice and Freedom into the world.
I am within you now. I see Myself, That which I am, within the lotus of your hearts, arrayed in the colours of your aspiration, and from this do I derive great joy. It is that Light within you which has brought Me to you. Let it manifest abroad in all its power and glory and light a pathway for Me in the world. (Maitreya, from Message No. 62)
On 12 December 2008 Share International distributed a news release announcing that in the very near future a large, bright star would appear in the sky visible throughout the world, night and day, heralding the imminent appearance of Maitreya in His first interview on a major US television programme.
You can read more about the 'star' on a separate page, please click.
Federico Mayor Zaragoza:
Working for peace and sustainability
Federico Mayor Zaragoza, former Director General of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), is a tireless worker for peace and the promotion of justice. During his 12 years as head of UNESCO (1987–1999) Professor Mayor gave new life to the organization’s mission to “build a bastion of peace in the minds of all people”, putting the institution at the service of peace, tolerance, human rights and peaceful coexistence. Under his guidance, UNESCO created the Culture of Peace Programme, whose objectives revolve around five main themes: education for peace; human rights and democracy; the fight against isolation and poverty; the defence of cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue; and conflict prevention and the consolidation of peace.
In late April 2010 Professor Mayor kindly agreed to take part in a Skype conference with a group of students in the International Master of Museology Programme at the Reinwardt Academy for Cultural Heritage Studies in Amsterdam.
The following is his address.
A sustainable future
What do we want to give to our children and their children?
We cannot leave future generations a legacy of a world in confusion and crisis, with environmental degradation constantly increasing, and the gap between the rich and poor continuing to widen.
We cannot leave them a world in which we have been guided by market forces. This practice has been an immense trap.
Instead, we must be guided by social justice, by human rights. We must be guided by the fantastic values enshrined in the human rights treaty created at a universal level to inspire our everyday behaviour – the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
In 1945, after the creation of the United Nations – “we the people” – to save succeeding generations from war, instead of co-operation and sharing, instead of keeping faith with developing countries, we chose exploitation.
In 1974 an agreement was reached that rich countries would give 0.7 per cent of their Gross National Product (GNP) to developing countries. Anyone who can count can see that it means the developed countries were left with 99.3 per cent. This was not enough for us; we decided not to give the money directly but to extend loans – not just loans, but loans with interest. Regretfully, instead of becoming an institution of support and solidarity with the poor, the World Bank became an institution at the service of the leading countries because of their power and wealth.
The result, particularly in the last decades, has been very harmful. The power of the globalizers has done immense harm: there are those who say that we must be guided not by sharing and social justice, not by ‘intellectual and moral solidarity’, as the UNESCO constitution says, but by market laws. The result has been the terrible crisis we are in now.
We, the industrialized countries, exploit the poorer countries even more than before. We do whatever we like. We take their resources, while conditions in the poor countries deteriorate daily.
It is clear that we are in a deep crisis – but let me say it is also a great opportunity. We must be ready to make radical changes. We must take the future in our hands. We must work at building peace instead of preparing for war. Wars in the past have been based on lies and strategic plans for the oil and the vast potential of these countries.
We are now at a point where we can make an important and fundamental change for the future. We can make a radical change.
What will our legacy be for the young generations?
We can say to the younger generations that we will no longer live in an economy based on speculation or based on exploitation and on war.
Do you know that every day we spend $3 billion on armaments – the machinery of war? And yet, in the same time, in 24 hours, more than 60,000 people, of whom at least 35,000 are children, die from hunger. Every day. This is absolutely intolerable from the moral point of view. We cannot tolerate this any longer. We cannot tolerate any longer the fact that we spend money on weapons while people are so poor they are dying from hunger. They have no access to water, to food, to healthcare, to medical treatments and to shelter.
The most important mandate or mission of UNESCO in the context of the UN system is that we must promote a change from a culture of force, of imposition, of violence, a culture of war into a culture of dialogue, reconciliation and alliance, a culture of peace.
To achieve this we need to stand up and say that we no longer accept a globalization based on the supremacy of the richest countries. They have abandoned the United Nations: they have created plutocracies – the G7, the G8 and now the G20. This division is intolerable. How can we tackle this?
We need a strong and important United Nations again, with all the countries represented equally. The UN must be reformed, so that all the countries together are guided by the ethical values of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. And now we have the chance to change our culture and our economy into one based not on war but on global sustainable development. Sustainability for all means we need to produce food for all. We have the knowledge. We can today feed all people – 6.5 billion people – we can feed everybody. We need to remember the Millennium Goals. If we spent $6 billion a year we could make an immense difference. We must produce water. We can produce food and we know how to keep people healthy. We can provide shelter, education, transport.
Above all, we need to create a culture of peace. Let us stop force and promote a culture of listening, of talking, of respect and tolerance so that the final result is the transition from a culture of division and war to a culture of dialogue and peace.
Maternal deaths decline worldwide
The number of women dying each year from pregnancy and childbirth has declined significantly, from about 500,000 in 1980 to less than 350,000 in 2008, according to research published in the medical journal The Lancet.
The study by US and Australian researchers gives several reasons for the improvement, according to the New York Times: “lower pregnancy rates in some countries; higher income, which improves nutrition and access to health care; more education for women; and the increasing availability of ‘skilled attendants’ – people with some medical training – to help women give birth.”
More than half of all maternal deaths occurred in only six countries in 2008 – India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. But India has made consistent progress, and because it has a large population, its improvements have helped to decrease the worldwide rate of maternal deaths. China has also made significant progress.
Dr Richard Horton, The Lancet’s editor, said the study’s results confirm that worldwide efforts on behalf of women have made a difference: “Two decades of concerted campaigning by those dedicated to maternal health is working. Even greater investment in that work is likely to deliver even greater benefits. Women have long delivered for society, and, slowly, society is at last delivering for women. This is a moment to celebrate – and accelerate.” (Source: New York Times, USA; BBC)
Former tour guide helps Peru’s poor
Since 1993, American Patty Webster has been bringing medical relief to some of Peru’s poorest areas through her non-profit organization, Amazon Promise.
When she started out as an adventure tour guide in the Peruvian Amazon, Webster was astonished by the poverty and lack of healthcare in the villages. “I saw how poor the villagers were and realized that people were dying because they didn’t have medical care,” she said. Webster began sharing her supplies with the locals, and eventually founded Amazon Promise.
The organization is run from the city of Iquitos, located in the middle of the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, and the capital of Peru’s largest and most remote region. Nearly half of the area’s population lives in poverty, and one-third of residents lack access to basic medical care.
Webster organizes several expeditions to these underserved areas every year. Each trip is staffed by medical volunteers from the West, as well as Peruvian health professionals. A traditional shaman, or healer, often accompanies them.
“In the villages, the volunteers provide preventive services such as prenatal checkups and general exams, but most of their time is spent treating a wide range of ailments like malaria, TB, pneumonia, diarrhoea, animal or snakebites, and parasites,” according to CNN. “Teams usually see several hundred patients during each expedition.” The group also trains village health workers and educates villagers about HIV prevention, hygiene and sanitation.
To date, more than 55,000 people, including those living in the region’s urban slums, have received free healthcare and education from Amazon Promise.
Webster lives in the group’s offices in Iquitos, and has never collected a salary for her work. Her motivation to help, however, has never waned. “I’ve found my purpose,” she said. “Regardless of whether it’s getting to one person or 30 people or 300 people, you make a big difference. Anything I can offer them that is going to help them … it’s just a real gift.” (Source: CNN)
Reducing malaria in Africa
Substantial investment in malaria control has contributed to major progress against the disease in Africa, but more funding is needed, according to a report by UNICEF and the public-private partnership, Roll Back Malaria. “Progress in Africa is on an upward and accelerated trajectory,” according to The World Malaria Day 2010: Africa Update, “with the period from 2004 to 2009 showing a 10-fold increase in global malaria funding from external sources to nearly $1.8 billion in 2009, a five-fold increase in global production of insecticide-treated nets to 150 million, and over a 30-fold increase in ACT (anti-malaria drug treatment) procurement to 160 million.”
These investments have resulted in a significant reduction in malaria in a number of African countries, including Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana and Tanzania. But the study said that external funding “still falls short of the estimated $6 billion required annually to ensure universal coverage of malaria control interventions.”
“With strong collaboration, great progress has been made in the battle against malaria,” said Ann Veneman, UNICEF’s Executive Director. “But more remains to be done as children and pregnant women are still dying of this preventable and treatable disease, especially in Africa.” (Source: rollbackmalaria.org; Agence France-Presse)
India makes childhood education compulsory
A new law has taken effect in India that makes school attendance compulsory for children between the ages of six and 14, and establishes a system for monitoring the quality of schools.
In addition to mandatory attendance, the law requires one teacher for every 30 students, and promises free textbooks, uniforms, transportation, and student lunches. India also plans to train 1 million new teachers in five years, and put into effect stricter requirements regarding teacher qualifications. One provision of the law requires elementary schools to set aside 25 per cent of their seats for impoverished children. The estimated cost of implementing the law is $35 billion over five years.
It is widely agreed that passing the law will prove easier than implementing it. Challenges include its large cost and vast scope, as well as the problem of government corruption. In addition, because India has not ratified international treaties on child labour, there is no minimum working age, making it difficult to get children from poor families to attend classes.
With the passage of the law, “maybe a third of the battle has been won,” said Shailendra Sharma, a programme director for Pratham, an aid group working on educational issues for poor children, “but the rest we will fight out on the ground.” (Source: Globe and Mail, Canada)
Book review by Betsy Whitfill
The Story of Stuff is a film, a book and a movement. Initiated by Annie Leonard, it is one of the most talked-about projects in schools and on the internet. Beginning with a natural love of the forests of her childhood home in the US Pacific Northwest, Leonard’s curiosity about garbage began with the simple observation of the wasteful felling of trees for frivolous purposes like waste paper and materials packaging. She spent 20 years investigating international waste trafficking, working for Greenpeace, then for Ralph Nader’s Essential Action, the Global Alliance for Incineration Alternatives, Health Care Without Harm and The Sustainability Funders.
Leonard created The Story of Stuff video in 2007, which summarized all that she had learned about the seamy underbelly of our modern consumer-led, growth-based economy. The film became extremely popular on the internet, and raised so many questions and discussions that she wrote the book, The Story of Stuff, rounding out what is now known as The Story of Stuff Project.
It is not a pretty story. In an article for the Winter 2010 issue of YES! Magazine, Leonard wrote: “While I once felt like a marginalized garbage-nut, I now realize I am part of a massive community of people, all over the world, who know deep in our hearts that something is wrong. Our economy is off track. Half the world’s population lives on less than $2.50 a day, unable to meet basic needs, while a handful of people amass obscene levels of wealth. Our industries convert the planet’s resources into wastelands while pumping out toxic chemicals so pervasive that they are now present in every body, even in those of newborn infants. And our culture encourages us to find fulfillment in rampant consumerism rather than compassion and connection.”
Particularly in the US, we buy much more than we need and can use. We also keep what we buy only a short time, so that 99 per cent of our stuff is in the garbage six months after purchase. The richest 1 per cent of us owns as much wealth and stuff as the bottom 57 per cent of us. We habitually buy for convenience, for amusement, for personal enhancement without a thought as to how the products were made, the impact of their manufacture on natural resources and the landfills where they are dumped when we are through with them.
Worse, we dump our refuse, causing poisonous pollution, in the poorest countries of the world because they need money. Planned obsolescence is a fact of Western life, and we expect that our economy must grow ad infinitum. We assume that prices will always go higher and so we plan and work accordingly, buying ever more stuff before the price goes up, and in turn driving prices higher.
Leonard’s campaign is based on waking us up to a new awareness of what this consuming is doing to us, to our fellow humans across the world and to the Earth itself. Once we become aware, she writes, we will realize that it doesn’t have to be this way. The limitations of our planet, the amount of water, air, land, natural resources are imposing limitations on human activity whether we like it or not. It is happening now and cannot be avoided. Therefore, why not take the reasonable approach and revise a culture of sustainability, low consumption, low impact and low stress, in which people matter more than products, and nature sustains us rather than poisons us?
Leonard begins by showing us the flow of materials through our economy. First there is the extraction of raw materials. It takes 98 tons of material (trees, water, chainsaws, chemicals and more) to make one ton of paper. The next step, production, involves product design, how much and in what way those materials are used, the chemicals used and the labor to run the processes. Distribution follows production, and involves transportation, storage and retail facilities. As they are carried out now, extraction, production and distribution have enormous and far-reaching effects on people and the environment.
Then comes the sacred act of consumption, carefully calculated to lure us into thinking that buying this product will bring happiness and contentment. Yet studies show that beyond a certain level, consumption doesn’t increase happiness. The stress of making more and more money to buy more and more stuff actually diminishes happiness because it limits our social and family relationships, increases a sense of isolation, and diminishes our sense of civic connectedness.
Lastly, instead of repairing and reusing our stuff, we Americans are heavily into disposal for a variety of reasons, including planned obsolescence and prices at which replacement is cheaper than repair. Individual, even large scale recycling is not enough of a solution because many products are made of materials that cannot be separated out, and because for every can of recycled materials we fill, there are seven cans of unrecycled materials used upstream in the production process.
What is the solution? We always want the quick fix, but this situation is so complex, the dangers so pervasive, that it will take, Leonard says, several changes, each dependent on the others, to save our planet and ourselves. What we need to do is shift our paradigms – the lenses through which we view our lives without even realizing it.
First, we must redefine progress. Rather than measure progress using the Gross Domestic Product standard (the amount of material goods and services) we could use the Genuine Progress Indication that measures resource depletion and pollution. Better yet, Leonard writes, use the Happy Planet Index (www.happyplanetindex.org) that measures environmental impact and human well-being.
Secondly, we must eliminate war. Why, she asks, is there always money to wage war, yet government always complains that meeting human needs is secondary? We must value and act to support health, education and renewable energy sources rather than continuing to spend for war and preparations for future wars.
Thirdly, we must “internalize externalities”, which is to say we must all become fully aware of the true costs of making, transporting and disposing of the material goods we buy. And we must accept the higher prices that those costs impose.
Finally, we must value time over stuff. A reduced work schedule is not only good for health; it creates improved social interaction, lower consumption, less stress and less negative environmental impact. Some say that the economy will fail if we work less and shop less, and Leonard agrees. However, she suggests, along with a number of economists, that reducing working hours and the resultant consumerism slowly over time will allow the economy to adjust to a slower pace without too much disruption. One study showed that one-third of respondents would gladly trade free time for some reduction in income, especially if their benefits remained intact. A national healthcare system in the US would go a long way toward facilitating the transition to more leisure, wider employment through job sharing, less consumerism and healthier living.
Annie Leonard’s call is really for a broader, more human-centered view of life. As a critic of economic growth as an end in itself, she approaches the inner sanctum of what it means to be a patriotic American today by criticizing many of the aspects of capitalism that currently dominate life, especially the notion that capitalism is inevitable. But the golden opportunity to rethink the way we in America live was wasted with the huge US government bailouts of 2008.
“Even while taking over the reins of a country steeped in social, environmental, and economic problems, during a troubled time ripe for the adoption of alternative strategies, President Obama and his team promised over and over that economic growth would return. The US Treasury’s $800 billion rescue package to stabilize financial markets in late 2008 was to protect this sacred idea of economic growth, and by 2009, Obama, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, economic czar Larry Summers, and Federal Reserve chair Ben Bernanke had committed an estimated $13 trillion of public funds to bailing out Wall Street and kick-starting economic growth again.”
Leonard is trying to wake us up to the fact that in America, we are steeped in a particular economic model, capitalism, that people in other countries know is just one of several alternative models. “There is no way around it: capitalism as it currently functions is just not sustainable.”
We live in this paradigm and don’t even realize its pathologies. While living in Bangladesh for five months without Western contacts, Leonard learned the limits of her American paradigms and saw life afresh with possibilities she never considered before, as if she had emerged from a flat earth culture that didn’t encourage exploration to the edges of the world. She learned what it is like to repair and reuse almost everything, and that cottage industries based on repair and reuse can be stable sources of employment and personal pride. She experienced a more casual and highly socialized culture in which, for example, one is expected to just “show up” at a neighbor’s house for dinner without even being invited.
The point is that at this particular time in American history, alternative ways of living should be considered as we search for ways to move forward into a better life….