|I've put my reiki "healing hands" behind my globe and will post them below |
in their entirety in hopes that you may feel the love generated
by them and that they may add a little peace to your day.
Today is the 7th Blog Blast for Peace, the brain and love child of Mimi at Mimi Writes by which she has inspired bloggers across the world to share thoughts and hopes and images and prayers for peace in our world.
At about the same time that Mimi first announced the date for this year's event, I received a link to a very interesting website called the Center for Nonviolent Communication from a friend of mine. I set it aside to use for today's event because it aligned with something I have been thinking about for a while now.
I'm politically very progressive. There's a very cool website called The Political Compass that evaluates where you are on the political grid and I am sufficiently liberal that I fall south-east of Gandhi and the Dali Lama, so you can imagine that yesterday's political results have left me feeling a bit of despair. But I digress.... As part of my political junkiness over the past few months, I've spent a lot of time at Huffington Post reading not just their articles but the comments of readers. To say the least - the language in much of the posters is anything but courteous. Much like what passes for news media, these days, it consists largely of people "yelling" at each other in print. But what bothers me as much as that is the nature of the headlines there... to the point that I wrote to HP about it. Their headlines there are awash in "so-and-so SLAMS X." Their favorite words include words like SMASH, BASH... even when the article reveals that no such violent emotion or word-play was actually involved in the exchange. Politicians have "hit lists" and "take each other down." Glenn Beck and Fox news foment fear and paranoia and the rest of the is media not far behind.only somewhat more subtle in their approach....
Jon Stewart put it nicely, I thought when he compared the media using it's magnifying glass to "light ants on fire" instead of illuminating issues - and then offering a week of reports on the sudden onset of burning ants. (He said it much better, but I'm too lazy to find the exact quote. You can listen to his speech here, if you missed it. It's worth a listen.
|If you click on the photo you will get a larger version|
We tend (well I do) to think of Peace on some grand scale - calling an end to war and violence - and I'm not opposed to that. I'm very much for it. I don't understand why people want to kill each other over religion or land or oil or any of the host of other absurd reasons human being use to justify massacring one another. I don't understand why people want to carry guns or why they feel justified in executing other human beings to prove that killing is bad. Because of that I sign petitions and write essays and letters. I think it's good to do those things.
But of late I have begun to think that maybe peace needs to start at home and radiate out, that the more of us who learn to be conscious of and to moderate our angry hate-filled thoughts and words, the more of us who learn to meet hate speech not with counter hate but with compassion, with a heart open to understanding the pain that germinates that hate, the better the world will be. It's harder to grow hate in minds and hearts that are fertilized with kindness and compassion. It's harder to grow hate in minds and hearts conditioned to look for our co-humanity with even those whose thoughts and actions we most despise. It's harder to go to deny food or health care to someone in whom you can see yourself than to "that poor person" or "that liberal" or "that conservative," "that immigrant," etc. And it's harder to go to war and point a gun at someone when you think of them as a fellow human and not as "the enemy."
I don't know the answer to fixing the world or to creating global peace. I don't even know the answer to creating peace in my own heart. But I think being very conscious of my un-peaceful thoughts and words may be a good place to start.
I post a gratitude list each day. I'll keep it short today, but I don't want to forget.
Some things I'm grateful for today:
- the Blog Blast for Peace
- Peace seekers
- heat and hot water
- the internet
- my home
- my cats
- the US mail
- my camera
- Peace wherever it lives
- Peace in my heart when I can find it
- everyone who reads this post and posts their own