Sent on a Global Network: Response by Sunny Jacob SJ

As an ICAJE member, I know that we are very much in the direction of a Global networking. The talk by Mesa is apt and relevant to the time.

The world is so much talking about globalisation, and insists on having universal outlook etc. However, we see a lot of regionalised movements, sectarian and nationalistic thought pattern encouraged by leaders and political parties across the world. The emergence of extreme nationalist movements in different parts of the world, the religious based divisive forces on the one hand and on the other ethnic or linguistic chauvinists gaining momentum in many parts of the world. There is darkness, hatred, violence, fundamentalist and fanatics seems to be controlling the world....

In this context the topic discussed by Mesa is good for us to reflect upon. This will lead us to think deeply about what we aim at education...why education at all? What do we aim at education?

It is clear that we all are products of our environment. If it is good, we get good education. Creating that good environment is educational aim. Our kids are like a seed....every seed potentially contains a future tree...however, every seed does not actualise its innate potency. The seed needs, soil, moisture or water, air, manure, care....all those seeds get all these will grow and produce good fruits.. Similarly all the kids that born in this world are potentially good. Only they need good atmosphere, good surroundings, healthy environment, good values, and allround positive development. We are here to provide that atmosphere, that is our aim and endeavour through our educational institutions. This means we need to educate them positively, breaking the barriers of regional and nationalist boundaries. Give them positive, global perspective.  In this all the stakeholders must think and act globally.

  1. Here comes Mesa’s proposed five points for us to reflect. I agree with him fully. Jesuit network of schools is the beginning. We need to understand that ‘we are participating in a greater Jesuit mission that transcends the boundaries of their school or country, and willing to be part of the Global mission’. This calls for flexibility and openness.
  2. Understanding Ignatian vision is a prerequisite for this global networking. This calls for a deeper commitment to the vision of the Society through its legacy and the call for innovation.
  3. We all must think globally and act locally. Our diversity must be a strength to enrich our goal, not restrict or limit. This will wipe out narrow domestic walls of fanaticism, extremism and jingoistic nationalism.
  4. We must educate ourselves that dependency is bad and Independence is impossible. The right concept will be INTERDEPENDENCE. We must recognise that human being is an extension of the other. We are pilgrims on this earth. Therefore, entire world is our home.
  5. In a highly polarised world, reconciliation is the only way out to create harmonious existence. This calls for ‘let go’ in many areas. A new way of proceeding is the need of the hour.  Greater service can be given through collaboration with all. 

I am sure that the beginning is done in Boston and we will take it forward much more urgently now. We in JEA started, collaboration and networking within the provinces, within the Zones and to a great extent at South Asian Level. We earnestly look for global cooperation at all levels. However, we have miles to go before we sleep!

Thank you Jose Mesa for putting us all in perspective.

Sunny Jacob SJ