October Love Saves the Day ~ Doctors Without Borders
This month at Laughing Lotus, we celebrate the Goddesses and Gods, deities who serve as archetypes for the values and beliefs we wish to embody; we pay tribute to luminaries such as Ganesha, the remover of obstacles and lord of new beginnings; to Saraswati, the goddess of learning and the arts; and Krishna, the embodiment of devotional love. In focusing our energy and awareness on supreme beings, we open ourselves to seeing and cultivating Divine qualities in ourselves and recognizing them in others. Sufi poet Hafiz asks, "How do I listen to others?" His answer: "As if everyone were my Master speaking to me his cherished last words." Elsewhere, he has written, "...sweetheart, you are God in drag." We, all of us, ARE the divine and it is through the practice of yoga and love of our fellow humans that we come to fully see this truth.
In seeing and acknowledging this divinity in ourselves and others, Doctors Without Borders/Medicines Sans Frontieres (MSF) (www.doctorswithoutborders.org) was founded in 1971 by a small group of French doctors and journalists in the wake of war and resulting famine in Nigeria and deadly floods in what is now Pakistan. Over the decades they have provided medical care for Cambodian refugees (1975), worked clandestinely in Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion there (1980), run medical and mental health clinics in war-torn Bosnia (1991), and more recently, are running the largest medical operation in Liberia to treat ebola patients.
The work of Doctors Without Borders in Liberia, though they currently run the largest ebola management center there, is dangerous and in need of support. In the words of Pierre Trbovic, a Belgian anthropologist currently working with MSF in Liberia (and whose recent heartbreakingwork there has been to turn away patients they cannot manage):
There was no way of letting more patients in without putting everyone, and all of our work, at risk. But explaining this to people who were pleading for their loved ones to be admitted, and assuring them that we were expanding the center as fast as we could, was almost impossible. All we could do was give people home protection kits, containing gloves, gowns, and masks, so that they could be cared for by their loved ones with less chance of infecting them.
After the rain came the scorching sun. One day an old man waited outside for five hours with just a broken umbrella for shade. In all that time, the only thing he said to me was, “Too much sun.” It took him so much effort. His son was with him, but was too scared to go near him to offer any comfort. When we were finally able to admit him, his son came to thank me with tears in his eyes. (to read his full dispatch from Liberia, please click here)
Whether we are rich or poor, sick or well, yoga can help us remember to serve others with the love of Krishna and maintain the faith to begin again with the energy of Ganesha. If you'd like to help Doctors without Borders in their Divine mission, please click here http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/support-us and remember, Love Saves the Day!
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