Editorial . August . 2011

Inner Light

One of the most beautiful sights in Kathmandu and around Nepal is to watch people lighting lamps at temples, monasteries, sacred spaces and during special family occasions and daily rituals. The tree butter is heated and poured into a brass or clay “dewa” or lamp with a cotton wick. When one of the lamps is lighted, it is then used to light many others. As the first one lights many lamps, the “illumination” of the lamp does not decrease. It is an amazing phenomenon. This experience gives us so much insight into the way we can change as many lives as we possibly can by passing on what we know - the skills and techniques that we have acquired. We can help so many people in need and yet we shall lose nothing in the process. We shall gain many new friends in the process. Of course we all know that the light will ultimately die; so will we. All of us will ultimately die. So why not spend a little part of our short life lighting up other lives? Surely there are ways and means to help us all to discover that inner light in each one of us.

Nepal is going through a difficult period in its long history and has come out of a bloody armed conflict. It is during these very difficult times that it is important for people to take some time and effort out of their own lives to care for those who have so much less than themselves. On July 16, at the Civil Mall, over 400 college students gave up their meals for the whole day and collected money to pay for food for children who come to school without any food in the morning. It was heart warming to see their enthusiasm and commitment. These actions and decisions by young people is what gives many people real hope for the future of this society. It takes a lot of courage and selflessness to do something like this for other fellow human beings in need. I am sure such acts are good for the spirit. They must be earning some spiritual merit. The fact that these people are starting to give at such a young age is heartening.

This issue of ECS is once again the result of a lot of effort from the team. It has decided to take a closer look at the spiritual side of the human being and our quest for what is beyond the material. The content of this issue varies from the spiritual to developmental issues. Last month, the horrible incident where five school going children fell off the wire bridge they were on and washed away by the raging Trishuli river, 80 km west of Kathmandu, is a stark reminder of how much still needs to be done to make this country safe for children and everyone else. We are all confident that you will enjoy reading about fascinating people, exotic places, unique orchids, and of mountains. There is probably something in this issue for everyone, inclusive in every sense of the word. Whatever you do in the coming month, we hope you will make some time for the Nepali way. We do hope you also enjoy the monsoon….there is a lot more to come.