To the People of Earth!

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SEND THIS APPEAL TO ALL YOUR FRIENDS AND COLLEAGUES

There are times where the sky is burning; -- there are times where the earth is torn apart, oceans flood the country and thousands lose their lives; there are times, where mothers are forever separated from their children, times, where lovers see each other for the last time, friends say definitely good-bye and the dearest die in a blazing inferno. There are times, where the hope for a safe future is robbed by the greed for power. Times, where a fanatic philosophy of life strangles the desire for love, hate abandons the endeavour for living harmoniously together and the will to kill is stronger than the will to respect and to protect the splendor of the gift of life. In spite of these times of darkness and madness, never forget to smile if you have the possibility; never forget to be amazed when the sun rises behind the horizon and a new day is dawning. Never forget to love yourself and the ground whereupon you stand. Never forget your own name and who you are. Don’t forget that you are a human being born into this world to live a unique life, never to be experienced a second time like this. Every day there are green sprouts breaking through the burned earth to announce a new beginning -- don’t forget to be grateful for this.

There are many cultures on this earth, many peoples and ethnic groups. All are different from each other. All have another understanding of this world and all have their own philosophy. Some of these philosophies drastically differ in their content whereas others differ only a little. Some of them correspond, others contradict one another. Many people and many doctrines. An ardent disciple will follow his doctrine eagerly. A fanatical disciple will follow his doctrine fanatically. But what does ‘fanatical’ mean? It means that two human beings can’t talk in friendship anymore about their opinions. It means that they don’t shake hands if they meet in the desert but that they try to strangle each other, and it means that they would rather die than ask for help from the other.

Fanaticism is an epidemic that spreads quickly. The one who becomes infected will soon communicate it to others. It is a blazing fire that spreads among people, that consumes reason and eliminates their view for variety allowing themselves to be intolerant of opposing beliefs. Fanaticism is like an arrow that races through the air towards its destination. Never would it stop voluntarily. Never would it deviate from its path and never would it let go of its sharp point. Finally it bores deep into its target and nobody can ever pull it out again.

Lots of those people live on our planet. Blindly they fight for their ideas, caught up in an ideal for which they can’t let go of. Neither do they respect the life of their fellow creatures nor do they respect their own life. Stringently they follow the path on which they once decided to go on. On the paths that they walk you’ll find great harm. On the streets where their armies march you’ll find emptiness.

Who has seen them will ask himself how one can be so ruthless, so mad and so devilish. Upon their deeds you’ll become infuriated but at the same time there will be deep mourning. It is the mourning of the victims. A mourning of those who have lost their families and their friends; the mourning that people on earth can’t exist next to each other in peace, that it is impossible to solve a conflict without using force. Everybody will look inside themselves and understand that nothing is built for eternity, nothing lasts forever, that there is no safety and no protection against the fatal ideas of the obsessed revolutionaries and world-changers. You’ll understand how fragile the dream of an undamaged world is, and how quickly the most wonderful palaces and buildings can lie in ashes. The wonders of the forests, lakes and the landscapes -- these unique great creations -- can be bombed and burned down within a few seconds. And the mourning will move everybody and tears will fill the oceans.

But this mourning has a seed inside that starts growing profusely from the tears that water it, and the plant gets bigger and more powerful. It is here hate finds good soil. Like mist it surrounds the thoughts, it stuns like the smoke of opium, and in the giddiness of hate the desire for retribution gets stronger and the will to take revenge substitutes reason. The victims aren’t victims anymore but avengers and they become so engrossed in their plan to hunt down the originator of their suffering that their senses are clouded and their sympathy is numbed but their mad ideas are powerful and drives them unstoppably, relentlessly -- they turn fanatical.

The circle is closed.

The sky will burn and the earth will shake. Armies will fight against each other without knowing what they are fighting for, without knowing what they are dying for, without knowing why they live. Stop this war! Don’t let madness determine your action! Decide wisely and just!

Defend yourselves if you are attacked, but don’t kill without reason. Be consistent with your resolutions but only go so far as it is necessary. Fight for your rights and your freedom but don’t do this at the cost of innocent lives. Live your life as you think it is good but don’t forget that there are lots of people with many lives. Be free in the things you do, but still allowing everybody to breath in their own personal space. Believe what you need to believe, but don’t put your belief above that of others. Be patriots in your own country but also think about being a citizen of earth. Say your opinion but don’t say it so loud that you are unable to hear others. And whatever you do don’t forget that no crime stays unpunished; that’s why you shouldn’t act like criminals but like brothers and sisters sitting in a small boat and sailing towards an unknown country. There are lots of dangers out there, but you are your own biggest danger. Don’t let the boat capsize. Row gently down the stream of life ...

Atlant Bieri

Switzerland

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