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Be me friend

I am not a nice person. I have more rough edges than simple geometry can explain. I wrote a sweet book, but I am not sweet. I do, however, in the depths of my grouchy heart, believe that the world is a rough place that demands average people to pull out from their inner depths the best they can offer. And sometimes even more than that. And I have witnessed people who do that. I sound like the old men in every generation who sit in their rocking chairs and complain that the world today is not as good as the world they grew up in. But it is true. The world is so much harder, so much faster, and thanks to technology, our ability to do damage has grown exponentially. The atom bomb is a water pistol compared to what we can do now, physically and spiritually, to destroy our world.  I have also seen a movement, a small movement but it could easily spread like wildfire, individuals who have pushed back the boundaries of good that a person can do in his lifetime. It is a good thing to adopt an orphan. There are people who have made their hearts so big with love that they can adopt dozens of children. The young people of this generation will be faced with challenges that my generation created. But even though we created these problems, my generation cannot educate you or prepare you to cope with them. Our education is a failure because it can only show you how to become part of the system that created these problems. I beg of you, put aside the expensive toys we built for you. They glitter so nicely but they distract you from your real mission. There are a thousand ways to chat, but I never took the time to sit with you and talk, to really connect. There are a million songs on your device, more if you are wireless, but which one is the song that you and I wrote one night when we were jamming by the campfire, drinking beer, and crying on each others’ shoulder. A thousand million words float around the internet, but which ones tell me what is in your heart. And I have time to read more than 140 letters, so please take your time and tell me all of what your heart needs to say. There are billions of emails each day, but when did you write a letter to someone you love so they can hold a piece of paper that you touched and made warm with your hand, perhaps spotted with tears? My generation has deforested continents. For this I could never apologize but, when was the last time you planted a tree? We should have taught that in school. It is a problem you are facing and we didn’t prepare you for it. We went out to the stars, but our oceans are dying and we know nothing about them. The maps you see with the ocean floor so proudly displayed are lies. That cartographers made them up so they wouldn’t look stupid. Honestly, that is true. But we know a lot about the moon and Venus. They are dead planets, yet we can map them, though no friends will stroll their barren faces. At least not in our lifetimes. And because we spend so much time looking so far away for far-away answers, people may not last long enough to ever get there. Yes, our planet will be dead soon also unless you learn more about the ocean, about forests, and about your neighbor. Or the person sitting next to you right now. We never invested money in learning about nature unless we were sure to get our investment back in profits, and now nature is disappearing. I need you to not make a profit. I need you to ask questions that don’t have answers in the back of the book. I need a hug, and not the kind I can get on Facebook. I need you to believe in goodness, and then I need you to go there. Tell me what I can do to help you do that.

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