September 21, 2013 marks the United Nations’ 33rd International Day of Peace
Knowledge of the past holds one of the keys to world peace. Knowledge of the people in the world around us today holds another essential key. However, knowledge in and of itself is useless, a collection of unused paint brushes resting on the world’s shelf. It is our job to pick up those brushes and start painting. The perfect portrait of peace begins within each one of us. It’s painted one brush stroke at a time. Here are some simple steps that we can all take to contribute to that portrait:
Take the time to learn about those who are different from us in some way. We may want start with someone in our own family. Even there, we often find differences in opinions, race, religion, beliefs, customs, cultures, political affiliations. The list of personal differences and the diversity of relationships goes on….
Working in the classroom as a teacher of students from diverse backgrounds, I learned first-hand that those who hold different beliefs from my own are all unique individuals with whom I have many things in common. We all share the same needs and desires, the same frustrations and fears, the same hopes and dreams. Whether students, parents, staff, volunteers, administrators or colleagues, I have gained respect for and have been deeply enriched by each encounter. Life-long relationships are nurtured and continue to blossom and grow.
Sure, that all sounds great; but what can we actually do as individuals to promote peace?
- Listen to others
- Get to know them (That means spending time with them) Let them get to know us (talk)
- Respect differences
- Look for commonalities
- Nurture relationships
- Offer and extend a helping hand
- Encourage others
- Enlist the help of others
- Give input and feedback
- Keep the conversation going
The brush strokes to peace lie within each of one us. How do we paint the canvas? One brush stroke at a time. BUILD RELATIONSHIPS—listen, share ourselves and our ideas, respect those of others, look for commonalities. Our individual and collective lives will continue to be enriched as we work together to paint a portrait of world peace. We really do have the power to make it happen, one brush stroke at a time.
On September 21st, I’ll be interviewing M.C.V. Egan, author of The Bridge of Deaths. She’ll be sharing how she uses her novel to promote world peace. You’re invited to stop back and visit us here at http://www.4writersandreaders.com for MEET THE AUTHOR: M.C.V. Egan and join her PEACE IN TIME Book Blitz and Blog Hop.
Peace be with you.