"On this International Day of Peace, let us pledge to teach our children the value of tolerance and mutual respect. Let us invest in the schools and teachers that will build a fair and inclusive world that embraces diversity. Let us fight for peace and defend it with all our might."
The International Day of Peace is celebrated on September 21, 2013. It is also known as the World Peace Day and occurs annually on September 21. The day is dedicated to peace, and specifically the absence of war, such as might be occasioned by a temporary ceasefire in a combat zone. The World Peace Day was declared by the United Nations (UN) in 1981. Since then it is observed by many nations, political groups, military groups, and peoples.
To inaugurate the International Day of Peace, the "Peace Bell" is rung at UN Headquarters. The bell is cast from coins donated by children from all continents. It was given as a gift by the United Nations Association of Japan, and is referred to as "a reminder of the human cost of war." The inscription on its side reads: "Long live absolute world peace."
But just what is peace?
1. The absence of war or other hostilities.
2. An agreement or a treaty to end hostilities.
3. Freedom from quarrels and disagreement; harmonious relations: roommates living in peace with each other.
4. Public security and order: was arrested for disturbing the peace.
5. Inner contentment; serenity: peace of mind.
interj.Used as a greeting or farewell, and as a request for silence.
1. In a state of tranquility; serene: She is at peace with herself and her friends.
2. Free from strife: Everyone wants to live in a world at peace.
Reading this definition I am drawn to the very last line - "Everyone wants to live in a World at peace"
I hope and wish with all my heart that this is in fact true.Sadly there is much evidence to the contrary.
So how do we achieve World peace?
Now there's a question! Leaders from governments across the World would love the answer to that question. But is it so very difficult to answer I wonder?
Mahatma Gandhi: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Maybe we already have the answer. Mahatma Gandhi put it very simply, but his advice was true. It cuts the the very heart of the matter of peace. If we want World peace, it has to begin with us.
With you and me.
Peace truly is in our hands. If we are at peace, true peace within ourselves then our whole out look on life will be of peace. So it has to begin within us. If we are not at peace within ourselves how can we expect peace outside of ourselves?
Again it has to start with us- me and you.
When we think of peace we often see a depiction of a dove. I wonder what we can learn from this?
The dove is even associated with several mother figures in historical dove symbolism. Take the Mother Mary in Christian legend. The dove is commonly seen in Christian art with Mary as a symbol of care, devotion, purity and peace. The dove is a companion of Ishtar too, the Great Mother of Assyrian culture. In this motherly light, the dove elicits a promise of hope and salvation.
A quick keyword run-down of dove symbolism...
Aphrodite (Venus in Roman myth), the voluptuous goddess-mother of love, is often featured with a dove nearby in artistic portrait. Here we get the sense of higher love; a love that is as large as the goddess herself. A kind of love that turns a blind eye to the typical foibles and downfalls of mankind - and sees right into the heart of pure potential that is revealed only by viewing the soul through the lenses of love. ( information from What's your sign)
By far, my research has lead me to conclude that the primary symbolism of the Dove is that of patience and tenderness.
If we can be patient - with ourselves and others.
If we can be tender - with ourselves and others then perhaps, peace will be the outcome.
No matter what you're doing on Saturday 21st September I urge you to be at peace with yourself and at peace with all those around you. Because that's where it all begins.
If you'd like to join in on a celebration of World peace day then my friend Gregg Chapman will be hosting an International Didge day for peace. I can't be there myself as I'm already attending another celebration at the Red Tent women's gathering. There are many activities taking place all over the World. Go on go ahead, get involved and ...
A little like Luke Skywalker and the force.....
May peace be with you.