Because of the limiting nature of modern life and the reducing of many to subsistence-level existence, the scope of celebrations has been reduced from the richness of many past celebrational forms. Traditional celebrations which re-enacted the whole of life have often been forgotten, although weddings and funerals have taken a primary place and are engaged in with passion and in the teeth of the economic reality. There is a need for communities to broaden the scope and number of events to mark the journey through life, and to transpose ancient wisdom into meaningful contemporary forms.
Celebrations most often focus on the pleasant aspects of life, avoiding the fullness of struggles, joys and sorrows of daily living. Living is celebrated as positive achievements and better times rather than its entirety.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
The Encyclopedia includes problems which such groups choose to perceive and act upon, whether or not their existence is denied by others claiming greater expertise. Indeed such claims and counter-claims figure in many of the problem descriptions in order to reflect the often paralyzing dynamics of international debate. In the light of the interdependence demonstrated among world problems in every sector, emphasis is placed on the need for approaches which are sufficiently complex to encompass the factions, conflicts and rival worldviews that undermine collective initiative towards a promising future.
Non-profit, apolitical, independent, and non-governmental in nature, the UIA has been a pioneer in the research, monitoring and provision of information on international organizations, international associations and their global challenges since 1907.