A Global Re-Wiring

By Bobak Tavangar

“The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens.”
–Baha’u’llah, Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í­ Faith


This is only my first post as a writer for the E Street Beat but I feel obligated to cut through the fluff and get right to what I think we should be talking about. We live in a new world, one inextricably connected not just along external political and economic lines but internally enmeshed along social and spiritual undercurrents as well. It’s too easy to highlight what is being destroyed all around us but it’s when we dig through the ashes and find beauty reborn that we can begin to understand the reality of the words above: “the earth is but one country…”

This year alone I have seen the privileged and powerful fall to bankruptcy and hopelessness. I have seen people across the globe breathe the sweet scent of self-determination for the first time. I have seen leaders in Iran, France, Burma, and Honduras react to bloggers in Moscow, Sacramento, Shenzhen, and Cape Town. I have even seen the first African-American president of the United States proclaim to a packed audience in Ghana that Africa’s present and future is for and will be shaped by Africans themselves. I can’t help but notice that almost everything testifies to our being in the midst of a global rewiring–physically, technologically, mentally, spiritually…

All of this has caused me to smile a lot recently. In less than two years I have witnessed the utter destruction of a global order I had previously thought unquestionable and the steady creation of a world that views all of mankind as fellow citizens instead of subjects. All that I had been studying–religion, economics, biology, politics, business, philosophy, chemistry, law–has been turned on its head. The world has become accessible in a new way. Our time as 20-something year-olds to reconstruct the world has arrived.

What will your impact be tomorrow? Fifty years from tomorrow? I’m still pondering mine here in Beijing.

Bobak is a junior in the Elliott School of International Affairs, majoring in International Affairs with concentrations in International Economics and East Asia. In addition to being passionate about world unity and the Baha’i Faith, Bobak’s Persian heritage, American upbringing, and obsession with the People’s Republic of China lend him a unique perspective on what is unfolding around us. Duck and dumplings are currently on the menu as Bobak is in the midst of spending a full year in Beijing, China studying Mandarin and working for a Chinese environmental NGO.

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