Sea Green Singers - Mosquito Song - XR round - score and lyrics
If you ever feel too small,
Thoughts on “‘If you
think you’re too small to make a difference, try sleeping in a
closed room with a mosquito’. African proverb.”
The quote is often attributed to the Dalai Lama, however that is incorrect. The original source of the quote is Bruce C. Harris, a world renowned child’s rights activist and alumnus of Up With People.
For many years Mr. Harris would make a semi-yearly trip to Denver to give an inspirational speech to the new members of UWP casts. He would incorporate the phrase “If you think the problem is too big for you to make a difference, then you’ve never been in bed with a mosquito” or some variant into each of his UWP speeches.
The phrase eventually became well known among the thousands of international UWP alumni community. The advent of social media saw the phrase repeated by alumni, though often unsourced due to Harris falling into momentary disgrace after allegations arose that he sexually abused children in his organization’s care (those allegations have now proven to be unfounded).
Attribution to the Dalai Lama probably resulted from his reputation
for similarly inspiring messages in conjunction with the increasing
popularity of the phrase lacking any other sourcing.