Most of the time Death Valley in California lives up to its name. As one of the hottest places on earth it is the very definition of a barren, inhospitable landscape hostile to life.
However, every few years Death Valley is carpeted in lush and beautiful wildflowers.
These flowers come from seeds that hide under the ground and protect themselves with a waxy coating when conditions are hostile. When these seeds hide within their waxy armour, Death Valley not only looks barren but it gives absolutely no hint of the potential lying under the baked earth.
But as we all know, appearances are often deceptive.
In this case (as in many others) the potential for this display of life is simply lying dormant. It is just waiting for the correct conditions it needs in order to flourish.
If you build it…
In any organic system if some elements are missing (in Death Valley that would be rain) then it is impossible for the system to achieve its potential.
Human beings and the systems they create are complex, dynamic, inter-related, synergistic, organic systems. Just like those wax-coated seeds, human beings need the right conditions if they are to blossom and show their potential.
Unfortunately, masses of human potential goes unrealised all the time because of poverty or prejudice or injustice.
And this is not just a loss for these individuals. It’s a loss for all of us.
If we worked at achieving the correct environment for true human development and sought to develop the potential in everyone, who knows what beauty might be waiting to erupt?
“Man is the supreme Talisman. Lack of a proper education hath, however, deprived him of that which he doth inherently possess…Regard man as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it to reveal its treasures, and enable mankind to benefit therefrom.” Bahá’u’lláh (1)
Photograph – Wildflowers in [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_Valley_National_Park in Death Valley National Park] Photograped by [http://home.comcast.net/~milazinkova/Fogshadow.html Mila Zinkova] in April of 2005.