Tuesday, November 1, 2011

“Go Clean for Green” … so act RTC Students

Plastic, candy wrappers, discarded phone voucher cards, old shoes, beer bottles.  They are ubiquitous on Thimphu roadsides, in drains and creeks.  Where do they eventually end up?  Do they float down from this Himalayan kingdom to the Bay of Bengal?  Indian Ocean?  Or, do they simply pile and clog up Thimphu streams?  We, the tchillips, are not the only ones who have taken notice of the floating garbage.

“Small Action, Big Difference,” says one placard.  “Short Term ‘Sacrifice’ for a Long Term Gain,” is written on another.  And with another slogan of “Hand in Hand to Save the Environment,” Bhutanese youth take action on Sunday (October 30th). 

None of the over one hundred students, staff and faculty from Royal Thimphu College, who literally handpicked garbage on the capital’s streets and from drainage, fretted or fussed.  Even as they picked up unpleasant and unsightly waste matter, they didn’t make a face.  When finished for the day, a student quietly expressed, “it has been a good day.”  Indeed.  The day's action reminded me of a few lines I read of the Sutra of a Hundred Actions:

The joys and sorrows of beings
All comes from their action, said the Buddha.
The diversity of actions
Creates the diversity of beings
And impels their diverse wanderings.
                                          Vast indeed is this net of actions!                         (Hyun)

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