Vermont – A journey to remember

I arrived back from Vermont a week ago yesterday so it is not surprising that the memories are fresh, however I don’t think that they will ever fade. I was only there for a week, so much happened, so much was experienced that it feels as though I was there longer. Continue reading Vermont – A journey to remember

Peace – still all we want

I am reading a book by John Perkins entitled The Economic Hitman and so recently I signed up to his newsletter. This is the most recent newsletter and I felt the urge to share it…

Peace

I’m in Istanbul, a city that has seen its share of war. Today Turkey is greatly impacted by the violence in Iraq and Syria and the turmoil over Iran; yet this country is a leading negotiator for peace. I hope you’ll read the below on the topic of peace.

Aggression Begets Aggression

By John Perkins

In our present state and based on the world’s past history we know that aggression only begets more aggression. War creates more war.  Terrorists do not dream as children of becoming terrorists. As we hear the drumbeat of our current US leaders for more “intervention”, I can’t help but think of the line in Catch-22 – the satirical novel of war – “Open your eyes. . . It doesn’t make a damned bit of difference who wins the war to someone who’s dead.” (Chapter 12, pg. 133-134)

And I think of my friend, Kiman Lucas, Executive Director of Clear Path International – http://www.cpi.org ,  a non-profit that works to restore the dignity and self-sufficiency of conflict survivors in many countries. Kiman recently traveled to Vietnam and Cambodia; she wrote:

“ I believe any future in our world must be based on the rule of law, respect and empathy for each other and a tolerance and appreciation for our differences.  But fundamentally, we need to stop glorifying our tribal pasts — whether they are what you think of as colonial masterminding or what I think of as tribal divisiveness.  I do not want to bring the world back to the glorious conquering days of the colonial powers any more than I want to bring the world back to the headhunting days of the Shuar. 

It may serve our egos to remember the good ole days of our own people’s triumphs, but it also serves to perpetuate the myth that aggression is honorable.  Perhaps it will be “female” thinking – based on nurturing rather than killing – that can bring the people of this world together to stand up for what is right and to recognize that the “enemy” has always been the ideas we have about the other, not the other.”

Nurturing peace, planting seeds of harmony, wisdom, co-existence and respect for all is the only way to preserve a future that will be different for our children. Repeating the mistakes of the past and arming ourselves with bigger and better weapons only provides new anguish to those who are the targets of those weapons –  children, villages, women and men who, just like us, are trying to do the best for their offspring. When we cut out all other options of human existence and rely only on aggression to solve our problems, we become the PROBLEM.

Today think of one way you can sow peace in your community and watch it bloom worldwide. Take at least one action for peace every single day.

END 

John

John Perkins

New York Times bestselling author

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www.johnperkins.org
Hoodwinked
Confessions of an Economic Hit Man
The Secret History of the American Empire
Shapeshifting
The World Is As You Dream It
Psychonavigation
The Stress-Free Habit
Spirit of the Shuar

Listening

I spent the weekend with many friends, listening. We listened to each other as we shared part of our life story. We spoke in turn and did not interrupt each other, concentrating instead on listening.

Not the sort of listening where you are already composing your retort/reply/next question.

It was the sort of listening that was just that – listening. We listened with our full attention, trying not to fidget or get distracted from the role of listener. It was a very active listening.

It is rare to have that sort of listening these days. It requires discipline and patience. It also requires the listener to put away their judgements and take out their compassion. It humbles the listener to hear a friend share fully their joy and their pain, their mistakes and their learning, their tears and their laughter.

I feel very lucky to have such friends and my heart is full…

Not taking it no more…

I found this story whilst trawling the web last night, the story is also covered here– what do you think?

This story is about a group of women in India who have enough of being beaten and undefended. They have started to group together and stand up for themselves, using lathi – traditional sticks, if necessary.

For the longest time women who have been abused have not been heard, these women are making some noise!

I can certainly understand the frustration that lead to this situation of women having to go to such lengths to stand up for themselves when the authorities that are supposed to keep law and order are not to be trusted. Of course it should not be necessary for the authorities to protect women and children, women and children should not be subjected to violence but unfortunately this is not always the case.

I don’t believe in violence as a remedy which is perhaps why I found this story so interesting and thought provoking.

What do you think?