Image source: UN website, Goal #2 Zero Hunger
All praise be unto God, Who hath… enjoined on them the fast that those possessed of means may become apprised of the woes and sufferings of the destitute.Bahá’u’lláh, in The Importance of Obligatory Prayer and Fasting (A Compilation Prepared by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice, May 2000)
March 2021, Christine Muller
While the experience of the fast does not compare with the acute hunger millions of people all over the world are experiencing, it does help us to become more aware of the suffering of others. According to the United Nations, food insecurity was already on the rise before the pandemic, and Covid-19 has been exacerbating the food crises caused by climate change, conflict, and locust infestations. 21.3% of children—144 million—are stunted because they don’t get enough food! (Source: UN Goal#2 – End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture)
The month of ‘Ala is a good time to reflect about the connections between the unjust and unsustainable systems we are all involuntarily caught up in and the poverty and hunger in the world. How can we raise awareness about how the current agricultural, energy, and transportation systems contribute to hunger and human suffering? How can we help change the systems? How can we transform our own town to become more sustainable, just, as well as more resilient in the face of future food insecurity? How can we apply the spiritual principle of contentment to our personal lifestyle to minimize our contribution to the destruction of nature and to human suffering?