A Challenge For The 21st Century

by Lou Torok

I recognize that I belong to the family of mankind
Made up of all human beings of every race, color,

        creed and ideology
Now living on this Planet Earth.

I understand that there can be no common good
Without an individual good.

I am responsible for myself and for all human beings
Who share this earth with me.

I know that our enemies are those among us
Who will not share the responsibility for our common good.

I accept my own personal responsibility:
        To replace darkness with light,
        To replace hatred with love,
        To replace suspicion with trust,
        To replace lies and hypocrisy with honesty,
        To replace abuse with kindness,
        To replace frustration with patience,
        To replace fear with understanding,
        To replace bias, prejudice and discrimination

                with tolerance,
        To replace ignorance with knowledge,
        To replace indifference with concern,
        And to replace apathy with action.

I believe that all men are entitled to equal opportunities
To live, to grow and to flourish as human beings
With dignity and respect.

I acknowledge that it is as important
To live and work for peace
As to die for peace.

As a member of the family of mankind
Now living on this Planet Earth
I thus commit myself
And challenge my children
And their children, with God’s help,
To do as well.

Copyright 1996 Lou Torok
Permission granted to reprint with proper credit

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