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February, 2007

Number 39

“Blessed are they who instead of trying to batter down the gates of the kingdom of heaven approach
them humbly and lovingly and purified, for they shall pass right through.”

Peace Pilgrim


Index

Unity in Peace
Meeting Peace Pilgrim
The Inner Way
Activity in Seeds of Peace
Peaceful Initiatives

Cabian Corner 
Anecdotes from my Correspondence
Humility
Welcome 
Reflections

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Unity in Peace     (index)

In recent days I have had the privilege to be in touch with the prominent French artist who supervised the work of the statue of Europe.  Bernard Romain tells me, "The base of the statue is presented as a braid, a cord, representing the interlaced arms of various cultures in spiral form emerging from earth, all of which gives its strength.  The more this message of peace is diffused in the world the better."

The statue of Europe was manufactured, modelled, polished and painted by children of differ-ent cultures, with impaired vision, under the supervision of Bernard Romain.

www.bernardromain.com/statueofeurope.html 

Made out of resin, it measures more than 5 meters and weighs nearly 800 kg.

This work of art is placed at the heart of the European quarter within the unique cross-roads of peoples and cultures that is Brussels. 

The sculpture posts several symbolic systems.  The colors used represent at the same time the ethnic diversity of the various communities in Europe, but also all the colours of the national flags of the Member States.
           
This monumental work carries a universal message of brotherhood and hope. 


euro peace dove


           Meeting Peace Pilgrim     (index)

When I was in university in Little Rock, Arkansas during the mid-1970s,  I had the privilege to spend time with Peace Pilgrim.  As always, she had scheduled speaking engagements in  advance of her  visit.  She spoke to my Cultural Anthropology class and addressed others at the invitation of my friend and  professor, Katherine Hardy.  I was surprised by the incredible power of her words and the clarity of her message.  She felt immediately like family to me. 

After her talk as our class adjourned, it began to rain and I found myself strangely compelled to walk with her shielding her from the downpour with my umbrella.  It was to me as I imagine a walk with St. Francis might be.  Thirty years later it seems like yesterday.  I asked if she needed anything; "lunch, lodging, dinner, anything?"  Did  she have a place to stay?  "No, I don't need anything  at all."  "Thank you, though".  "What about lunch, will you join me for lunch?"  I continued.  She responded, "I'm speaking at the faculty club and I think that they will have lunch for me."  Then she explained that I  shouldn't bother with my umbrella because the rain didn't bother her.  She had walked in the rain many times.  My insistence was transformed by her kind smile and piercing eyes.  And so, we walked in the rain and shared a few minutes, talking about our mutual friends.

Most of us receive glimpses of the light in our lives.  Some see it fully and are forever changed by it.  Peace Pilgrim walked every hour of every day in it for half of a lifetime and countless lives have been transformed because of her willingness to pour herself out in God's service.

Thank you for your wonderful reminder of this woman who lived her life in kairos time.

Peace,
Steve Blasingame
California. USA


The Inner Way     (index)

          Returning to center requires discipline.  To simplify conversations this week, consider:

bullet Am I communicating honestly?  Do I mean what I say?

bullet Do I listen to others aware of their body language as well as their words?

bullet Do I respect the importance of silence in my life and interactions with others?

bullet Can I be present with someone without constantly talking?

"The Tao of Inner Peace"
by Dianne Dreher


Activities in Seeds of Peace     (index)

Seeds Cafe :
Coming Together through Art and Culture

"Art and culture are reflections of the realities of a people and are powerful ways to learn about others. This concept and the wish to create a comfortable venue for Palestinian and Israeli neighbors to enjoy a relaxing evening together has inspired the Delegation Leaders Program to create the Seeds Cafe at the Center of Coexistence in Jerusalem.

The Seeds Cafe, held on the first Sunday evening every month, will feature local Israeli and Palestinian artists and performers who will lend their voices to a spirit of exchange and coexistence by means of film, music, poetry, comedy and story telling. Each month the program will include a reception with music, a cultural presentation, and open dialogue. The Seeds Cafe is a space where Palestinians and Israelis, Jews, Muslims and Christians, can gather socially in an atmosphere of friendship and comradery to get to know each other and become familiar with aspects of each other’s social and cultural lives.

 

Semillas de Paz
Seeds Cafe

The youth are very happy to have outstanding figures in the Palestinian and Israeli communities serving as Coordinators of the Cafe Program. Mrs. Dorothy Harman, Chair Elect of the International YMCA in Jerusalem and Professor Mohammed Dajani, of IPCRI, and Chairman of the American Studies Department of Al Quds University bring years of leadership within their respective communities. They will be hosting and organizing the programs at the Seeds Cafe each month.

As Dr. Zasloff points out, “It is pressing for us to serve the surrounding community. By offering residents of Jerusalem a place to share their art, their culture and their narratives, we create opportunities for neighbors to meet one another."

South Asia Program:
First Regional Conference Begins

"This week, Seeds of Peace is holding its first South Asia Regional Conference for Indian, Pakistani and Afghan students in Karjat, India.

This unique event will include close to 60 Seeds from these countries and 30 adult educators.  Some of the adult participants are former Delegation Leaders who accompanied the students to the International Camp in Maine, and others are principals and educators who represent the schools that the Seeds attend.

The regional workshop will teach the youth and educators about dealing with conflicts and encourage them how to apply their training to dialogue across national boarders.  The overall theme for the Conference, Creative Conversations: Building Bridges, will focus on strengthening skills, knowledge and attitudes related to the issues that divide and unite South Asian Seeds and educators.  Together and separately, the youth and educators will learn about culturally suitable dialogue models, analyze strategies that support conflict transformation, practice and apply the listening and speaking skills required for creative conversations, and assess ways to keep dialogue channels open."

Delegation Leaders Program:
Teachers in Gaza

"Under the auspices of the Seeds of Peace Delegation Leaders Program, 25 male and female teachers from governmental and private schools in Gaza have enrolled in a 60-hour course on tolerance and non-violence held at Al Aqsa University. 

The teacher training course, called Toward Tolerance and Peaceful Society is being taught by six professionals and professors from across Gaza.  Each is delivering 10-15 hours of instruction with the goal of emphasizing the value of peace. More specifically, teachers are being trained to incorporate these subjects within their classrooms and encourage these concepts within their communities.  The workshop enhances teachers' skills in effective communication, conflict and crisis management, and accepting each other."

Al Quds and Hebrew University Students

"In an effort to widen our impact within the greater regional community, Seeds of Peace, through the Center for Coexistence, has organized a weekly dialogue group composed of students from these universities.  The group is comprised of Israeli and Palestinians who have dedicated their academic and future careers to understanding the conflict and peacemaking. 

In addition to the value of having Palestinian and Israeli students come together for dialogue, these sessions are also monitored, recorded, and watched live by fifteen graduate Seeds who are using this experience to gain the necessary skills in the art of facilitation.  The Seeds observe the way in which the facilitators guide the discussion and following, the facilitators meet with the Seeds to analyze the sessions and discuss observations."

 

Conferences in Mumbai

"Our South Asia regional follow-up program to the camp experience brings together Indians and Pakistanis for conferences throughout the year and keeps the youth engaged locally with one another.  In Mumbai, the South Asia program recently hosted the first part of a “Bring-a-Friend” Workshop, in collaboration with the Mumbai City Museum.  The museum currently features an interactive multimedia exhibition titled "Eternal Gandhi" based on the life and times of the Mahatma.  The Seeds viewed the exhibition, discussed it with one another and reflected on it.

Based on the themes of the exhibition, Gandhi’s message, and it's relevance in today's time, the students have developed a follow-up workshop to take place later this month.  The museum has kindly donated the use of their auditorium for discussions and group work.  The youth will bring friends to the follow-up workshop and develop scripts for street theatre.

Tushar Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi's great-grandson (also on our Campers' Selection Committee) is expected to meet with the youth at the museum session and share some stories.  The program focuses on a great peacemaker, and subsequent workshops and theatre performances emphasize the many ways Seeds continue their work of peace in their lives."


Peaceful Initiatives     (index)

Peacemakers Incorporated has remained grounded in its mission, values and perspectives on personal, local, national and international levels to explore and implement peaceful solutions to human conflict.  They will sponsor the Third International Women’s Peace Conference, to be held in Dallas, Texas, USA scheduled on July 10-15, 2007.  For more information see: www.womenspeaceconference.org/index.htm

Light a Candle for Peace: www.webshots.com/sp/peace_candle/

From 1953 to 1981 Peace Pilgrim walked more than 25,000 miles on a personal pilgrimage for peace.  She vowed to "remain a wanderer until mankind has learned the way of peace, walking until given shelter and fasting until given food."  In the course of her 28-year pilgrimage she touched the hearts, minds, and lives of thousands of individuals all across North America.  Her message continues to inspire people all over the world: www.peacepilgrim.org/pphome.htm

The Alliance for a New Humanity includes people from all regions of the world and from all walks of life - united by a common vision: to strengthen and sustain an actively compassionate humanity.  This group is open to anyone who pursues this goal.  More information in: www.anhglobal.org/index.php

Everyone is invited to send in news articles published in the mass media about events and initiatives contributing to the global movement for the culture of peace in any of its components: peace education, sustainable development, understanding, and others.  To learn more about the International Decade for a Culture of Peace go to: decade-culture-of-peace.org

Circles of Light is an organization committed to celebrating and honoring the bright potential and sacred wholeness in all people, in communities across the globe: www.circlesoflight.org/index.html

Dedicated to empowering young leaders from regions of conflict with the leadership skills required to advance reconciliation and coexistence. Seeds of Peace has been functioning since 1993: www.seedsofpeace.org/site/PageServer

To see World Prayers written by spiritual visionaries visit: www.worldprayers.org



Sabian Corner
  (index)

A light sees a light, and by holding up a light the capacity to see light is first awakened.

Marc Edmund Jones
Founder of the Sabian Assembly
www.sabian.org

******

We thank thee for thy presence at our hand .  {Gene Johnson}

Please let that higher intelligence arise now! {Michael Elliot}

Afirmation for Health: 

"I rely on the healing power of God within me."  

“Anyone who knows how to move consciousness in an evolutionary direction is part of the peace movement."

de “Peace is the Way” by Deepak Chopra
shared by Patti Hudson


Anecdotes from my Correspondence    (index)

A comment from San Francisco, California, USA: "I recently returned to the frenetic world of haste and schedules, but they are part of life.  I’ve found it difficult to return to my studies. . . I always try to remain alert, to enjoy each day and see even the smallest things that happen around me!”

Mayte: My dear friend, how beautiful to know that you maintain a great level of alertness.  I invite you also to reflect that we can accomplish a state of more profound Inner Peace when we constantly pay attention to our inner voice and this process is facilitated when we dedicate at least a few minutes of our daily routine to be centered, to stay in balance, and to prepare for the day to come.  A daily routine of at least 5 minutes of meditation can produce great fruits.  In this way we expand our perspective of the circumstances in which we find ourselves instead of being overwhelmed by circumstances.  In this way we increase the probabilities of generating new ideas that help us to improve the quality of life for ourselves and the ones  we love.  It is with this personal time that we can remember who we are truly and we then can make an effort to explore all our potential and bring it in service to others.


Humility

"Humility is the platform of all other virtues.  It is purity of heart. "

Zeferino Cisneros
Chihahua, Mexico



Welcome    (index)

A warm welcome to our newest friends in the Enlace Internacional circle: Enrique, via email; Pedro A. González in Arizona, USA and Samuel Nava in México.


Reflections    (index)

(We invite you to participate in this section by selecting a phrase or sentence from the Peace Pilgrim materials.  Please indicate source and page.)

     … for it is in giving that we receive.  (Zoraida Consuegra, Estados Unidos)

    flower button One's union with God is the ultimate goal.  (Rosemary, South Africa)

    flower button You can only find harmony when you realize the oneness of all and work for the good of all. 
    (Emilia Kuri, México)

    flower button No one walks so safely as one who walks humbly and harmlessly with great love and great faith. 
    (Hna. Magdalena de Jesús, Chile)

     flower button Be a sweet melody in the great orchestration.  (Mayte Picco-Kline, Estados Unidos)


 

Send your questions concerning inner peace, contributions and artistic expressions to Mayte Picco-Kline.  Enlace is published three times yearly.  If this is the first time you’ve received it and wish to be a part of our circle of friends, please send a confirmation note.

Enlace Internacional   (index)
email:
maytepk@solarm.net

 

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