The Origin Of Peace
Deana J. Tavares 7/1/18
Where exactly does peace begin, and where does it end? At which particular intersection or rotary does it then clash with hatred? I believe that peace begins with the individual. Its gestation process begins within the heart and it is then compassionately birthed out into the world. Once assimilated it spreads like spilt milk across hard cold surfaces, but there are no tears. Peace dries the tears of oppression, hate, injustice, and unites us. Heals us. It softens our chains by growing flowering fields of beauty within the seas of fear and distrust. One bloom at a time.
I believe it ends when we lose faith in the possibility of peace and turn angrily and violently towards the pursuit of hatred and war. I believe it ends when race, culture, class, and our various differences are demonized instead of celebrated. I believe it ends at that very moment when a bright-eyed child so full of potential is shot and killed removing the twinkle from within their eyes, because lines have been drawn, and enemies have been forged. It also ends when we don’t acknowledge the the loss of innocence and light within our veterans eyes, young women and men alike. When the darkness of war pervades into every pore of their being, we loose twenty two a day as a result of suicide, due to morals and values being questioned within the blink of an eye when weighed against patriotism. This is the reality of war. That is the moment where peace ends.
So how do we maintain peace? How do we collect, cultivate, harvest, peace, and distribute it out into the world? Well I have one idea of a great place to start. There are many organizations, artists, writers, and performers who are actively in pursuit of peaceful paths in which to educate and create change. When your blood boils to the top of your frontal lobe as a result of a horrific broadcast on NPR that morning regarding political events, these are the individuals who have and will come forward to speak for us all. These are also the types of programs that don’t receive adequate funding in order to continue their mission of growing community, promoting peace, and healing our world. Programs like the William Joiner Institute For War And Social Consequences.
For 31 years their programs have actively brought together dynamic writers across many cultures, socio-economic backgrounds, religions, and countries. This program has united Vietnam and United Stated veterans in hand to hand friendship, together healing the scars of combat. Their summer writers workshop allows individuals to learn, by sharing their perspectives about war and social issues with one another in a safe, understanding, and nurturing environment. Within this place it takes a great deal of courage and bravery for participants to actively share their thoughts as well as their stories. Everyday mindful tides roll in swimming across lips, fingertips, through black ink, spilling out onto white pages, and permeating droplets of change into the wind. It is here where we listen. It is here where we learn. It is here where we grow. It is here were the consequences of war are no longer avoided, but processed, and healed.
The William Joiner Institute is like the rarest yellow diamond that celebrities invest millions of dollars in to merely wear upon their fingers. However this diamond gives back, like bamboo roots spreading fibers of peace far and wide. Each new rooted writer gives peace a voice within their own countries, communities, schools, organizations, and within their creative practices. I would say that The William Joiner Institute will in fact give you a better return on your investment, when compared to that yellow diamond. In fact every year it will gain interest, cultivate, harvest, and feed the world heaping spoonfuls of socially aware advocates of peace. So to those people out there in the world who don’t know what to do to create change, I would suggest investing in a program that needs funding. An organization like the Joiner Institute that knows how change begins when we use our voices to find the common threads that weave us together, strengthening our collective quilt of compassion, and understanding. I believe that peace begins with the individual, then spreads like strong bamboo root fibers throughout the collective consciousness of our world.
To find out more about The William Joiner Institute For War And Social Consequences go to their website: https://www.umb.edu/joinerinstitute
Share this post if you too believe in peace and add #savethejoiner
Just a small sample of some writers and groups that have participated:
https://www.facebook.com/RedSageStories/ (Melissa Nussbaum Freeman)
The Joiner 31st Writers Workshop 2018
The Joiner 30th Writers Workshop 2017