WAKING UP IN PARADISE?

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By Damien Richardson

When Adam woke up that first day in paradise, as his eyes, hears, nose, and all of his body senses began to be activated; that must have been an unbelievable experience. But I am sure that once he saw the birds flying and enjoying the sky’s breeze, he would have wanted to become a pilot. Yet, most of the people of the Caribbean don’t realize that they are in paradise, until they leave and come back or listen as others describe the exceptional radiance, kind people, and levels of relaxation that the Caribbean provide.

The world celebrates the Caribbean as one of the must visit vacation locations. Today we can make an estimate that over 60 percent or more of the Caribbean citizens who leave the Caribbean do not return. The literacy level of the Caribbean people is at an average of 80 percent based on the UNESCO ratings, however, that number can be evaluated by some as being a bit too high seeing that there are no way to truly measure all of the Caribbean islands’ literacy levels, and as a principled fact the majority of the people of the Caribbean would love to return home to the Caribbean but lack a proper motivation to do so. When Adam realized that the Caribbean was 70 percent reliant on airlift and that it was going to cost him a whole lot of apples to fly between the islands, he decided to relax on the veranda instead. As a region the Caribbean is a victim of multiple centuries of natural disasters, colonial practices, strategic NGO involvements, multinational and corporate international banking and oil industry approaches that have not had any true or lasting benefit for the Caribbean people. Once we consider the expressions of Caribbean regional international aid and the lack of true regional preparedness strategies and any valid structured planning and support for the return of our Caribbean diaspora; it therefore, seems finally necessary to no longer simply give word play to our joint regional and local disaster and social preparedness.

Adam had to first realize that he was alive; after that it was important to understand what and why he was made to be alive. Now that we know that we are a Caribbean people what will be our next steps forward how will we begin our journey into the future together. Some questions that can come to mind as we forge an alternative positive future are the following. Why must we continue living in a Caribbean context with mediocre airlift and inactive protection from key natural disasters? Why must we continue to live without a clue of what our next generation will inherit as a legacy? How many more geniuses are we going to trigger and set assail in the seas of our many international harbors of knowledge and development? It is time to draw in the net. We as a people are faced with a seemingly big challenge, yet we are all graced with the necessary tools to all help uncover the great masterpiece that is called the Caribbean – islands working together with each their own intrinsic qualities and character facilitating a unique blend of social expressions as they work towards a series of common goals.

We live in a time were the Caribbean is seen as a paradise and nothing more; however, interestingly enough paradise speaks to the idea of having God’s presence or being in the presence of God. Wow, if that’s true, that the Caribbean is considered to be paradise, then creativity must abound.  The great Dr. Myles Monroe often said that God did not give us a table; He hid it in a tree. I believe that the Caribbean has the potential to become one of the foremost leaders for innovation and scientific breakthroughs in the twenty first century. The worlds top institutions and nations has fostered and provided a fire bath of experiences that has molded the people and young leaders of the Caribbean for this moment in history. Everyone within this region weather governments, individuals or family members can think of a brother or sister, a son or daughter that they have sent off into the world; into the stables of hope, with the one main concern being, by doing this I hope my child will have a good future and be able to provide for his or her self and their family. We have had much success, as a Caribbean people to the point were we now have top international writers, robotic specialists, aeronautical experts, architects, engineers, sports icons, film celebrities, musical geniuses, and top character individuals on all levels of society.

When we consider that God had already prepared Eden and put Adam in it, with all of its divergent facets and features, must have been a great sense of adventure. Some areas that we can frame as target goals to make sure that the Caribbean can continue to be called home by its people, a place for its people to capture the energy from its natural environment of thermal, sun, aquatic, and hurricane and natural winds. A place that provides for a level of recreation, elite services, yachting, culinary diversity, entertainment, security, innovative passive energy airlift and drone applications, technology, AI, robotics, holographic, nanotechnology, and satellite development, and services, bio and agricultural diversity and sophistication. What will it take for our next generation of Caribbean business leaders and entrepreneurs to get to this next level of existence; the funny thing is, it is already being done; it is time now for those individuals to expand on the business venture activities that they are already busy with and open different international, regional and local support platforms.

Forever etched in the sands of the Caribbean beaches will be the lasting words of the legendary Dr. Myles Monroe, “Your existence is evidence that this generation needs something that your life contains.” We, the people of the Caribbean, need to define a point of departure, a starting point. We need to choose a path forward or the choice will continue to be made for us. But one thing is sure, if Adam were here in the Caribbean, in the 21st century with us, he would want to take Eve on an island hopping tour in their personal drone.