There is a movement in this country to learn compassion for those around you, near and far. South Brunswick is joining this movement with a series of Cultural Community Conversations which was started by the Aging in Place Partnership, led by Jackie Rubel. The schools, local clergy and the library are joining in the conversation.
The initial call to get back to being compassionate toward others was expressed by author and historian Karen Armstrong. In 2008, she won a TED Prize which awards the recipient $100,000 and "one wish to change the world." Karen Armstrong's acceptance speach where she makes her wish can be heard on the TED Talks website at www.TED.org. The Wednesday Wisdom group heard this talk and several others who answered her call to "build this charter...to launch it and to propagate it until it becomes..." She goes on to conclude her talk saying, "I'd like to see it in every college, every church, every mosque, every synagogue in the world, so that people can look at their tradition, reclaim it, and make religion a source of peace in the world, which is can and should be."
In November 2009, the completed charter, that was compiled by the multi-faith, multi-national Council of Conscience, was unveiled to the world and 83,657 people have affirmed its message so far. You can read the Charter, learn more about it, its history, the council members who compliled it and ways that you can support it, at their website: http://charterforcompassion.org/site/. The basis of the Charter is very simple - it is the Golden Rule: "Do to others as you would have them do to you."
Please join us and the Aging in Place Partnership to spread the message of the Charter. Join the library Monday night bookclub on March 5 at 7:00 p.m. to discuss the book The Faith Club by Ranya Idliby, Suzanne Oliver and Priscilla Warner. Come to the next Wednesday Wisdom program on March 7 at 1:30 where we will view and discuss four more TED Talks on the topic of compassion and join in the Continuing Cultural Conversation on The Faith Club and the Charter for Compassion to be held at the library on March 11, 2012 at 2:00. This conversation will be led by several religious leaders in our community.