Remembering Garda Ghista
by Stephen Lendman
On February 20, activist/scholar/author/humanitarian, and dear friend, Garda succumbed to breast cancer.
On February 22, her son Firdaus reported the sad news. Receiving hospice care, she died in southern Germany. She’d been surviving by what she called “a series of miracles.” She’ll be sorely missed.
Several years ago she moved to India to help feed starving people. Using her own resources and what she could raise, she asked nothing in return.
Months back, she discussed her work on the Progressive Radio News Hour. She asked listeners to help best they could. She explained how little it takes to feed starving people without resources. Without aid, they’ll perish.
She advocated Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar’s philosophy. His spiritual name was Shril Shrii Anandamurti. He was an Indian author, poet, composer, linguist, social revolutionary and philosopher.
He founded Ananda Marga, a spiritual/social organization providing instruction in meditation, yoga, and other self-development practices to anyone wishing to learn them. Affectionately called Baba, he offered various social programs for disadvantaged and other Indians. His writings stressed human welfare and neohumanism.
His work inspired Garda’s socio-economic philosophy. She called it PROUT (PROgessive UTilization Theory). “It stands for the progressive utilization and rational distribution of all the earth’s natural resources. PROUT advocates another type of revolution called ‘nuclear revolution.’ ”
It reflects “every aspect of collective life – social, economic, political, cultural, psychic and spiritual.” It’s completely transformative. “New moral and spiritual values arise in society which provide the impetus for accelerated social progress.”
A new era replaces an old one. “(O)ne collective psychology is replaced by another. This type of revolution results in an all-round development and social program.”
Modern-day world systems destroy life, societies and ecologies. Sustainability’s not their mandate. They feature exploitation and plunder. Another way is vital.
Garda’s writings discussed constructive alternatives. Her World Prout Assembly (WPA) web site featured them. Her advocacy found expression in them. Her life’s work practiced them.
In January 2010, she founded Hearts Healing Hunger. It helps feed hungry people globally. It’s also involved in:
Longer-term projects include creating ecologically and economically self-sustainable communities.
Most important is feeding the hungry. Initial Indian venues were established in Siliguri, North Bengal and Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh. Other feeding centers were planned throughout the country. Achieving them depends on personal donations.
With Garda’s death, its site “currently (is) unable to receive money.” Hopefully it will again soon under others continuing what she began. Her work’s too important to disrupt.
It reflects PROUT’s mission “to unite moralists everywhere against exploitation anywhere.” It seeks “unsung heros” to confront oppression in all forms, including extremist fundamentalism, fascism, communism, patriarchy, and predatory capitalism.
They threaten all life forms, including planet earth and humanity. “Struggle starts (with) reclaim(ing) economic sovereignty of local communities.” PROUT sought to “unite all struggles against oppression into one global struggle (for) one world, one humanity, and one family.”
It challenged today’s order for what sustainably helps everyone everywhere. WPA headlined, “Economy of the People, For the People and By the People! Put Economic Power in the Hands of the People! Moralists of the world – unite!”
Garda lived what she believed. Her life’s mission was helping others by establishing life-sustaining initiatives. She gave all selflessly.
It doesn’t get any better than that. This writer was proud to be a friend and ally. Hopefully others will continue her vital work and enlist global support.
With out-of-control imperial wars raging and others planned, as well as deepening economic hardships for growing millions, it’s more than ever needed.
Spread the word, and keep Garda’s spirit alive.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at email@example.com.
Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.