Thursday, March 8, 2012

Shaken Up

So last night at around 10pm Haiti was hit by a 4.6 magnitude earthquake. It hit south of Port-au-Prince and had a depth of 3 miles. Because it was so shallow, so it felt a lot bigger than 4.6 magnitude. Talk about absolute panic for the Haitian people, and with good reason! I was in my room on my bed doing reports when the earthquake hit. Everything shook, things moved out of place, and I almost fell off my bed. It only lasted a couple of seconds, but as usual, it always feels longer when you are in the moment. When the earthquake stopped, it was wide spread chaos and panic. Everyone was screaming and yelling "God! Save us! Oh my God!" in Creole. People ran outside and started crying. Some of the children were shaken up. I held them in my arms and told them to calm down. One child was in a fetal position, rocking back and forth, he was terrified! After about an hour or so, most of the children fell back to sleep. I tried to calm down all the adults, but it was pretty much useless. They were all gathered outside, screaming and frantically calling everyone they knew. I mean EVERYONE they knew. No joke. Most of the staff slept lightly, with their doors opened, ready to run out if another earthquake hit. Some never went back to sleep, it was too scary to even close their eyes. So this wide spread panic was all over Haiti last night. All of the people living in the Lamardelle zone were outside of their houses. Most just slept outside last night in fear of what happened on January 12, 2010 repeating itself again. About an hour or two after the earthquake hit, the zone started to conduct Voodou ceremonies, accompanied both by loud drumming music and animal sacrifices. The burning smell of animal corps were just really really gross. I had to put my mask on to breathe a little bit better. The music was so loud, wayyyy louder than usual, which is understandable, because the Haitian people were desperately praying to the Deities to protect them from danger. So needless to say, no sleep last night!

All of today people were talking about the earthquake last night and how panic they were. They also started to talk about where they were on January 12, 2010 and how they felt then. It was a day of reminiscent and bad memories for everyone. After hearing all of these stories and seeing everyone's panic expressions on their faces, it really made me think just how lucky I am to have grown up in Taiwan. Taiwan is an island, just like Haiti, and it is an earthquake stricken area. There are earthquakes all the time, it is a norm in Taiwan. Ever since I was little, I can remember doing earthquake drills in school, where we get under our desks and evacuating when it is safe. We also had the proper earthquake knowledge that was related to us as we grew up about where in a building is the strongest, which would be where we should stand during an earthquake. Also the pattern of the shakes to determine when it is unsafe to stay inside and had to run out. It is because of these knowledge that I can always stay calm during earthquakes and analyze educationally what to do in each situation. Also, because I have gone through so many earthquakes, it is not something foreign to me. Yes it is still scary when it gets really big, but I have the education to back up my actions or inaction. When I look at the Haitian people, I felt the need to calm them down, but it is almost impossible, because they have not gone through what I have and vise versa. The children were fine to calm down after a while, but the adults were another story. I felt bad and just wanted to calm their hearts. I feel really fortunate and grateful that I have these life experiences with me. That my mind is calm due to education and wisdom and that my heart is calm due to Master Cheng Yen's teachings. Just like Master Cheng Yen said, "Education is the key. Education can change a society and can change their future!" It really is true.

It is these times that we need to have Great Repentance. Mother Earth is mad because we are not taking good care of her. We have been and continue to abuse our resources. We only have one earth to live on, so we all need to do our part. A small earthquake like this should quickly awaken our actions in life. We need to help those in need and do our best to protect the environment by recycling and taking on a vegetarian life style. One person can't change the world, but if we all came together, it is possible. We must take action. I pray for all the people in the world to be awaken to their actions! I especially pray for the Haitian people to better themselves, to better their surroundings, to let their wisdom grow. Let's all work together to make you and I and this world a better place!

Let us all pray together for all hearts to be purified, for a harmonious society, and no more disasters in the world. 

1 comment:

  1. In my heart, I pray with you.....

    Love mom+