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Back Opinion Opinion/Editorial Columns Universal Friendship and Karma

Universal Friendship and Karma

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Alex Sangha

It is difficult to be friends with everyone.  People will have differences of opinion, personality clashes, and unresolved issues that they may or may not be aware of.

People who try to make a difference in this world often come under attack from some people.  I was recently harassed in a hate spilled online conversation from someone I consider to be a closeted homosexual.  He did not like my style of advocacy and establishment of Sher Vancouver which is a gay and lesbian organization for South Asians and friends.

This person also called my daily battle with depression as an “imagined mental condition.”  This is an insult to everyone who lives with mental illness and to myself and my family who had to cope with numerous hospitalizations, suicidal episodes, and medication treatment trial and error over the last twenty years.  Some of the medications contributed to my weight gain, development of diabetes, and cholesterol.  The side effects of some medications can be devastating to your motivation and energy levels and sleeping patterns.

The fact that I am working on my second Masters degree and have been employed as a Youth Counsellor and Registered Social Worker, as well as founded a mental health, environmental, and gay and lesbian organization for my community is evidence of my determination and discipline to think positive, be positive, and work for the betterment of the marginalized and oppressed in society and victims of discrimination.

In addition, I enjoy writing to release my creative energies and have been a social affairs columnist with three newspapers.  I have contributed numerous letters to the editor and have launched a popular national green photo contest on my environmental blog as well as published a book called Imagine which is available everywhere through Amazon.

For my efforts, I have been profiled in the Georgia Straight Best of Vancouver issue and most recently was nominated for the Royal Bank Top 25 Canadian Immigrant Award.

I would like to be a social entrepreneur and that is exactly the type of work I enjoy doing and want to be involved with as a social activist and social worker.

The good news is I receive messages of encouragement and support from friends, allies, and supporters on a regular basis.  Positive reinforcement is important.  The few people who have went to extraordinary lengths to bring me down and judge me and try try to break my spirit I have forgiven.  I wish they find their calling and a positive direction in their life.

The principle of universal friendship is not necessarily to be friends with everyone but to wish everyone health and happiness and good fortune.  What messages you send out into the universe is what you get back in return.  This is karma and karma has carried me forward during the best and worst of times.  It can for you to.  Best wishes and God bless.

Alex Sangha, BSW (UBC), MSc (London School of Economics)
Registered Social Worker



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Imagine places ideas in society and gets readers thinking critically about their most cherished beliefs and values. Imagine espouses humanitarian and egalitarian ideals such as every citizen deserves to reach their potential and contribute to society.