Today is known as Columbus Day in America. In 1492, Christopher Columbus landed on the Bahamian island of Guanahani, which he renamed El Salvador. The natives living there at the time were called Arawak and were known to be a gentle and friendly people. However, they were captured and used for slavery and because of harsh treatment, they all eventually perished. This might be a good time to consider how the arrival of technology and with it, abuse and greed, can kill off an entire culture. As we consider our own culture in America, with our constant need to stay attached to our phones and iPads, can we resist the temptation to purchase yet another new electronic gadget or technological wonder because it is the latest, and by this action learn to live more simply in a culture of surplus and abundance? It may help us preserve and strengthen a caring culture for future generations.
By Joyce Iten, OSB