From October 2011 Tips & Tales


Let us not be stopped by that which divides us, but look for that which unites us. In the world today, more than 6 billion people live. If we could reduce the world's population to a village of 100 people, with all existing human ratios remaining the same, the demographics would look something like this:

  • 59 would be Asian
  • 14 would be American (North, Central, and South)
  • 14 would be African
  • 12 would be European
  • 1 would be from the South Pacific
  • 50 would be women, 50 would be men, 30 would be children, 70 would be adults
  • 70 would be nonwhite, 30 would be white
  • 90 would be heterosexual, 10 would be homosexual
  • 22 would be Christians, 21 would be Moslems, 15 would be Hindus, 6 would be
  • Buddhists, 5 would be Animists, 6 would believe in other religions, 14 would be without any religion or atheist

15 would speak Chinese, Mandarin, 7 would speak English, 6 would speak Hindi, 6 would speak Spanish, 5 would speak Russian, 4 would speak Arabic, 3 would speak Bengali, 3 would speak Portuguese. The others would speak Indonesian, Japanese, German, French, or some other language.

In such a village with so many sorts of folks, it would be very important to learn to understand people different from oneself and to accept others as they are.

  • Of the 100 people in this village: 20 are under-nourished, 1 is dying of starvation, 15 are overweight
  • Of the wealth in this village, 6 people own 59% (all from the United States), 74 people own 39%, and 20 people share the remaining 2%
  • Of the energy used in this village, 20 people consume 80%, and 80 people share the remaining 20%
  • 20 have no clean, safe water to drink, 56 have access to sanitation
  • 15 adults are illiterate, 1 has a university degree, 7 have computers
  • In one year, 1 person in the village will die, but in the same year, 2 babies will be born, so that at the year's end the number of villagers will be 101
  • If you do not live in fear of death by bombardment, armed attack, landmines, or of rape or kidnapping by armed groups, then you are more fortunate than 20 villagers who do.
  • If you can speak and act according to your faith and your conscience without harassment, imprisonment, torture or death, then you are more fortunate than 48, who can not.
  • If you have money in the bank, money in your wallet and spare change somewhere around the house, then you are among the richest 8.
  • If you can read this message, that means you are probably lucky!

--Shared by Sally Meeth

Sally said she got this item from the internet before it was printed in Tips & Tales nine years ago, but apparently it didn’t have a credit or she would have listed it. But it undoubtedly came from the book “If the World Were a Village: A Book About the World’s People,” by David J. Smith, 2nd edition, published in Feb. 2011, which imagines the world’s population as a village of just 100 people. She agrees that it is just as appropriate today as in 2011, probably more so.

--Galen Moses