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Suu Kyi no longer a voice in the wilderness

Still in Myanmar, 'The Lady' is traveling well

Suu Kyi no longer a voice in the wilderness
Aung San Suu Kyi memorabilia on open sale at a fair in Yangon
Mike MacLachlan, London
United Kingdom

November 30, 2011

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One welcome aspect of the apparent softening of the Myanmar regime is that Aung San Suu Kyi’s words and image are more widely available. She has still not been able to leave Myanmar, but she has, for instance, delivered the BBC’s Reith Lectures and has sent out a number of recorded messages to different organizations. The latest was to the annual conference in London on November 26 of the religious rights group Christian Solidarity Worldwide. “Although we call it Christian Solidarity Worldwide, it is well known that peoples of all races and religions have been protected and helped by your organisation,” she said. “This is such a good example for the whole world. We do not have to be divided because we belong to different countries, or different races, or different religions. We can all unite together in solidarity, for values that are shared by those who love humanity. Christian Solidarity Worldwide has done so much to help people in our part of the world; the underprivileged, the poor, the suffering. We have learned from you that a truly Christian spirit is a spirit that can be shared by people’s that belong to other religions. “After all, when we think of Christianity, we think of love. Christians always teach their adherents that God is love. In Buddhism too, we put so much value on loving kindness, metta, to be able to love others as we love ourselves, to care for others as we care for ourselves. “So this is what, I think, we share in common. We of different religions, we all believe that loving kindness, that love, that charity, are important for human beings. “I have followed the work of Christian Solidarity Worldwide through the years when I was under house arrest. I have heard about all the good work you have done, over the radio. And I have had the good fortune to meet some of you. And I have been so encouraged by the way that you are creating a more peaceful, a more united world, in every way that you can. As we progress into the 21st century, there will be more challenges for all of us to face. The temptation to resort to hate, the temptation to divide into different groups and different thought patterns will be very great, so we need people like you who will help to achieve solidarity, who will teach everybody that solidarity needs only one thing common to all of us: our common humanity. “And with that alone, we should be able to overcome the differences that might possibly divide us and bring suffering into our world.”
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