Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 76 A Second Chance

Today I had sort of a second chance at a situation I posted about in October. I was in a museum in DC when a Mom got very angry with her son. I didn’t hear the exact words that she said because she said them in a low voice, but they were threatening and she had gripped him by the arm in a none too gentle way. I had a similar experience in a parking lot outside a store in October and didn’t know how best to react. Today I remembered that experience and remembered the judgment I had felt toward the mother, which I’m sure didn’t contribute anything positive to the situation. So today I chose to react differently.

I stood calmly a few feet away and continued to look at the display in the room we shared. Rather than judge her for her anger, I simply found my center of peace and focused on letting it flow from me. I also chose to remain there to allow the peace to continue to flow but also to stand witness to that moment. She knew there was someone else there and the child knew there was someone else there. I don’t mean stand witness as in a witness to a crime, but more to hold the space for peace in that moment and to be a reflector for each of them to see themselves in, for whatever that was worth. I stood calmly and peacefully where I was, looking around until after they left the room.

I will never know if they felt the peace I offered in that moment, but I felt it and I felt the difference reacting differently made in me. I can only hope that it created an opportunity for peace to be felt for them as well.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 75 Contrast as a Teacher

Today was not a day filled with Peace. There was no particular reason for it to be less than peaceful, at least not one that I can put into words. It just seemed that even the air around me was not peaceful. It could be all the chaotic energy of people traveling and stuck in traffic or the chaotic energy of the end of the year, but either way it left me feeling decidedly less than peaceful. It even got the point where I was thinking to myself, I’m tired of being peaceful all the time! Now that’s me pretty darn far out of my center of peace. And I couldn’t easily find my way back to it despite all my practicing. It was as if I simply couldn’t remember any of my practices of peace. That is not a pleasant feeling for me. At some point though I had to just be ok with where I was and try not to interact with people from that place but allow myself to feel it. We all feel that way sometimes and there isn’t much point in denying it. The key is what you do with it.

Well today what I did with it was feel frustrated, scream at the sky, rant at my computer and just plain feel unlike myself. As uncomfortable as that was, sometimes that’s the best I can do. So I allowed myself to feel as unpeaceful as I was feeling and really notice the discomfort of that. I didn’t like it, but it did show to me how much happier I feel when I am living from a place of peace. When I am living from and choosing from peace I don’t often scream at the sky! I guess contrast is a valuable teacher even if it is uncomfortable.

Now I just have to figure out how to not allow the chaos of the holidays or the world around me be such a distraction from my path of peace. From now on, at least I will have that contrast to refer back to as incentive.

I also had the opportunity to look at another aspect of it when my beloved gently reminded me of how intensely I have been looking at and thinking about peace for over two months now through this Pledge of Peace and Love. As he said it I also realized that I hadn’t blogged in a few days. Was there a connection? I know that this Pledge truly does keep the focus on Peace and Love on the forefront for me. How do I keep it there if I’m not blogging for a few days as I did over the holidays, or worse yet when this Pledge ends? After all it was only supposed to be through the end of year. I’ll be pondering that this week, hopefully from a place of peace.

For now I will be grateful for the contrast that showed me how truly beautiful that center of peace is. I’m grateful as well for this Pledge that has given me the opportunity to place Peace and Love so front and center in my life that to be without them even for an afternoon felt so terribly uncomfortable.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 74 A Gift of Love

On Christmas day I received a gift beyond measure. My youngest daughter gave me a gift in a lovely green box. When I opened the box I found written on the bottom of the box the words, Look up. When I looked at the inside of the lid of the box I found the word Love. She had given me the gift of love. It was a most amazingly beautiful gift. Love given so freely and so purely and so joyfully. A box full of love was just exactly what I wanted for Christmas! I must have been very good last year.

It also served as a beautiful reminder of the true meaning of Christmas – a day that celebrates a gift of love to the world. And according to my daughter, all I need do to receive that gift is look up. How profoundly simple. I might say look within but really it’s the same thing. Look to the source of all Love and live from there.

I’m so grateful to my sweet daughter for the reminder and for a gift that so touched my heart. I hope that you received a gift of love as well.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 72 Christmas Eve ~ The Light Within

On Thursday on the Solstice, I rejoiced in the return of the physical light. Tonight I rejoice in the return of the light of Spirit. For me Christmas is an opportunity each year to not only celebrate the birth of Jesus, but also to celebrate that same light in each of us that shone so brightly in him. It is an opportunity to allow that light to shine with nothing covering it, nothing dimming its brilliance.

For me it is a time of deep gratitude for the remembering that we each have a spark of divinity within us. I rejoice in seeing it in others and I rejoice in remembering it within myself. There is such joy in connecting with that light, sitting with that light and allowing it to warm me and radiate from me. I believe that each choice I make from Love and Peace fans that flame within me and makes it leap ever higher.

I think there is another reason that Christmas helps us remember that light within ourselves; children. A birth of a great light is celebrated on Christmas day and through the joy we see in children’s eyes we see reflected the light born within each heart. Babies and children are closer to their joy that most adults. Whether they are consciously aware of it or not, they seem to be more connected to Spirit than most adults. I think we are working toward a time when that shifts (hooray!), but I think that is part of what helps adults remember the light at Christmas – we see it all around us reflected in the images of the newborn babe and on the faces of the children in our lives. What a joy it is to see that pure light shining forth and what a joy it is to feel it flicker within me in response.

The remembering of the light within is a gift I hope each heart receives no matter what you celebrate this time of year.

I think it’s perfect that tonight on Christmas Eve it will be a new moon. All the better for each of our stars to shine brightly forth in celebration! Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 70 From Deepest Darkness There Came Great Light

For those of you who haven't seen this on Facebook yet. This is my gift of Love for the holidays...

This time of year is always inspiring for me; the returning of the light, the joy overflowing, the kindness shared, the love expressed. It is always the returning of the light that seems to inspire me in writing. This year was no different. I offer the story below not just to those who celebrate Christmas but to all who celebrate the light. It is my gift to each of you, in celebration of the light within each of us. Enjoy in Joy!

May your holidays be filled with the Peace of knowing and the Joy of wonder! ~ Lynda

From deepest darkness there came great light.

It matters where the light falls

A manger is a trough from which horses and cattle are fed. Once a manger was padded with hay that a baby might rest upon it and the world be fed. Gentle hands laid him to rest upon a bed of straw and a great light from deepest darkness fell upon him.

They did not know that it matters where the light falls, that if it falls upon a heart so open, it will find there not just a home, but a mirror to reflect it back. When they looked upon him they saw the great light shining back through his heart, his smile, his touch, his words. But it matters where the light falls. For some, the reflected light from deepest darkness warmed and illuminated them and they felt great and abiding joy. For others the light was blinding, and they could not look directly at it. They feared it because they knew that to look at the sun could do great harm. They didn’t know that the son meant them no harm.

It matters where the light falls. Some saw the light from afar and knew it was a beacon that could guide them. They let the light fall upon their hearts and found it would lead them across vast expanses and bring them at last to the source of the light. And so it did. It brought them to a tiny manger from which they were fed, one small heart reflecting the light for all to see. For that is what he was from the moment he was laid in the manger, simply a reflector of the great light from deepest darkness.

It matters where the light falls. If it falls upon the doors of an Inn that are closed, the light will warm and illuminate only the door, not able to enter across the threshold.

That night long ago, it fell upon a stable whose doors were swung wide and whose creatures were welcoming. That night it found an open manger, a receptive place, for the light to be laid with gentleness upon a soft bed created with love. That night the great light that sprung from deepest darkness came to rest upon the heart of a child. His heart, which was so great in one so small, welcomed the light and there was immeasurable joy.

His heart shone forth with the light. His heart was the light. His heart is each heart.

The great light from deepest darkness ever shines and ever touches all, it matters only whether it falls upon a closed door or upon a place with doors open and a manger waiting where the light can rest and feed all.

Lynda Allen
December 17, 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 69 I'll have peace with my fries please

Today a funny thing happened. I am constantly in a state of wonder about how the Universe works and arranges things.

On my walk this morning at the farthest point from my house I noticed several pieces of trash along the sidewalk. It made me think that I should bring a bag with me on my walks to clean up things like that as I go. After all it is all a part of my neighborhood, my community. I didn’t pick them up though because I didn’t have a bag. I just made a mental note to bring a bag in the future and hoped the people who lived there would pick up the trash. As I reached my own house I noticed a piece of trash on the sidewalk. I smiled to myself and stopped to pick it up.

It was a McDonald’s french fry box that had been flattened. I picked it up gingerly. As I looked at it I noticed that it said in large letters, “I want fries with _____.” It was a contest. You fill in the blank with what you want with your fries and submit it for the chance at a $25,000 prize. I didn’t really think much of it but as soon as I got to my front door the words came loud and clear in my head, “I want fries with World Peace.” I laughed and thought that would be funny, but by the time I got inside the house the words and thought were flowing. So I typed up why I wanted World Peace with my fries and how I wanted to do that with McDonald's. I told them I’m a writer and I want to write a booklet about peace for them to put in all their restaurants and that I want the fries box to have a peace sign on it and quotes about peace from around the world. Why not?

Who knows what will happen with it, but the opportunity fell right in front of me and who am I to question opportunity? My heart led me and I followed. After all that’s what this pledge is about. And if there is one person at McDonald's who reads the entry and thinks more about peace, that’s spectacular. If they like the idea and put a booklet about peace in all their restaurants so that lots of people think more about peace that would be beautiful. I will let you know how it goes! You may get to vote for it one day next year…

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 68 Celebration of Life, Ruth Carver

I went to a celebration of life service for Ruth Carver that was the perfect demonstration of how a life lived from love can touch so many lives so powerfully.

The service was for a friend’s Mom. I didn’t have the good fortune to know her while she was with us, but after the service I feel like I know her now. She was outspoken yet kind. She stood up for what she thought was right and even sometimes stood up for a different perspective just to make sure all sides were considered. She was an advocate for life long learning. In each picture they displayed of her there was a twinkle in her eye! She loved her family deeply and would do whatever she could to encourage and support them without judgment.

Each person who spoke about her at the service spoke with love and reverence, with joy and sorrow. They were each grateful that she had been a part of their lives and for whatever time they had shared with her. She had touched all of them deeply; she had been an inspiration to each of them.

She had lived from love and it showed in each person who knew her. What a beautiful legacy.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 67 Stoplight

I was sitting at a stoplight today and noticed in my side mirror a pickup truck pulling a small open trailer. I remembered another time when I had been at the same stoplight behind a similar truck and trailer.

That day I was running late for work and the person with the trailer was driving rather slowly because the trailer was full – he was most likely heading to the dump which was nearby. I remember the day because it was an excellent learning for me.

I had been behind the truck for a few blocks and he was going entirely too slow for my liking. I got stuck at that light that day and of course it was his fault! I sat there at the red light fuming at him. Thank God I had that moment though because it gave me the time to notice how tense and angry I was. I stopped my train of thought and asked myself, is it really his fault that I got out the door late?

It was a moment of transition for me, a moment when I shifted and became more conscious of my choices and thoughts. I realized I had a choice. I could let go of the stress and simply wait for the light to change, knowing it was my own choices that made me late that day, not his. I wished him well on his way. I was so glad I got to shift the thoughts I was directing at him before he drove away.

Today as I was at that same light and remembering that day years ago, I wondered what if he had been able to feel and hear my thoughts? What if the people around us could hear our thoughts? Would we continue thinking the way we do? I felt kind of sick at the idea of him feeling all the anger I had been directing at him. The sad part for me is that I know that energy did reach him. He may not have been aware of it, but it did. I’m sorry that I touched his life with anger. I wouldn’t want to touch anyone’s life that way.

I’m deeply grateful to him and his trailer full of trash. I learned a valuable lesson then and today I saw it more deeply. How am I touching someone’s life today? My intention is to touch lives with love and peace. Thank you to the man in the truck for touching mine with the grace of learning.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 66 Caroling

Tonight I went Christmas caroling with a large group of people. I hadn’t been in years. I think many of us who hadn’t been caroling in a long time or ever, felt a little strange at first. I quickly realized the amazing gift of love we brought to each house and the gift of love we received in return.

It is an annual event for some in the group and so there were a couple houses where they expected us and even one that had cookies waiting for us! Many other families though were completely surprised to find people singing at their door. If you could only have seen their faces with me! The delight, surprise and wonder of finding us there was beautiful. They brought their children and dogs out into the chilly night air to listen. Their smiles were worth every chilled finger and nose. I was brought to tears several times watching their reactions.

I knew we had set out with joy in our hearts, but I had not anticipated the outpouring of love that would occur. Voices raised in song often bring me to tears with the harmony and unity of the voices and the emotion they can carry. Tonight they carried love and love was sincerely offered in return – the light in a woman’s eyes and smile as she held her son’s hand on the porch, the happiness on a man’s face as he held his daughter in his arms and they listened together, a family of four on their porch not only for the song we sang for them but also for the one we sang at their neighbor’s house. It left me speechless.

Love offered in song without expectation and love returned with joy. What a beautiful, if not silent, night.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 62 Peace, Lynda

In almost all of my emails I sign them Peace, Lynda. I could just make that my email signature and not have to type it each time, but I chose not to. I enjoy the act of typing it to each person. I feel like I’m genuinely wishing them peace and sending them peace. Is it possible to send peace electronically? Yes and no. Does the peace reach them through cyberspace? Probably not. Does it reach them through actual space? Yes. Because each time I type it there is intention behind it. There is the energy of peace intended for a specific person or people. I think that intention does carry that energy to them.

Of course, I don’t stop and think that intention every time I type it. Sometimes I’m rushed and sometimes I’m already thinking of the next email I have to write. Alas, I am human. However, it is part of my practice of peace. It serves as a reminder to me each day of what I am sending out into the world. I’ll admit that when I began signing emails that way I wasn’t nearly as clear about why I was choosing to do it. I simply was practicing peace and using my words to express that. Now I better understand the power of the intention behind it and what it carries forth into the world.

All the more reason to continue the practice and to let it serve as a reminder each time I type it.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 61 Peace Behind the Wheel

I was writing the other day about how the path of peace can sometimes be challenging. I didn’t realize just how challenging until I put the word Peace on my license plate!

First of all, you have to understand that I’m from Jersey. My Jersey take on peace is that your path of peace really come down to just two choices – two fingers making a peace sign or just one finger making a less than peaceful sign! Simple right?

I thought that I was pretty well along on my path of peace when I got my new license plate a year or so ago. I was wrong. Apparently my car was my last stand for a place where peace didn’t have free reign. I had become a far more peaceful driver than I used to be, no gestures and rarely any raised voices but still once I put that license plate on I quickly noticed where I wasn’t being so peaceful while driving.

It’s actually an excellent reminder to drive peacefully. Every single time I even think about driving aggressively or explaining, from the safety of my car, how the other drivers ought to get the heck out of my way, I remember the license plate. Then I imagine the faces of the other drivers as I zoom past them. In my mind I can see them roll their eyes and take my behavior as an affirmation of their skepticism about the possibilities of world peace. It may seem like a lot of pressure to put on myself, but the idea of anyone losing faith in the idea of peace because of my choices is enough to take my breath away. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say that it’s enough to make me find my breath. It is enough to make me slow down, breathe, be polite and realize that I will get where I’m going even if I drive more mindfully. I will probably get there with less stress too.

The other drivers may never know the internal choices I make each day as I drive, but at least I know that when they see my license plate they have a chance to get a positive reminder of peace. That’s enough to make even the Jersey girl in me offer up a peace sign.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 60 Is Love Alive?

A friend shared a song this morning called Winter Song. There was a line in it that jumped out at me, Is love alive in me? What a beautiful question. My answer was simple, yes. I love how that statement feels, love is alive in me.

Love is not just a feeling, not just a noun, love is an energy, love is alive. Love enlivens me. It is the source of life, it animates my human existence, it is my soul in motion through me. Love is in every cell of my body. Love is the core of who and what I am.

Living is simply an expression of that love. To live fully I need only let love flower from me, allow myself to be a bloom of love in the world. I cannot adequately express the joy of living the full expression of love. In the moments when I do fully live it I feel us all lifted, feel us all connected, feel the world of love that is possible.

This is why I am here, to allow love to be alive through me. Hallelujah!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 59 Peace is every step

Living a life of peace is a beautiful gift and I find it gets easier every day that I practice, but getting easier and being easy are not the same thing. I love the book Peace is Every Step by Thích Nhất Hạnh. It is a wonderful guide to living a more peaceful life every day. It has helped me immensely. Still, I find that walking peace in every step is work!

It takes a commitment to living consciously in each moment, which of course is a goal of mindfulness. However, in the society I grew up in that was not what we were taught. It wasn’t that I was taught to live non-peacefully, but I wasn’t raised believing that I was creating my life in each moment with the choices I made. Quite honestly when I did begin to look at that as a way of living years ago, I didn’t really like it too much! It meant taking responsibility for my life in great and small ways. It meant that I couldn’t just point my finger at someone else and blame them for my life. It meant that I had a choice in each moment about how I would react to the events in my life.

It was work. It still is. The practicing shows up in all areas of my life. There are times as a parent when I would love to just say, “Because I say so!” Yet, that’s not how I’ve chosen to show up as a parent. We talk about issues that come up. We look at them from different sides. We talk to each other peacefully (most of the time) and we listen peacefully to the other person. They each have a voice in our family discussions.

I’m sure it’s not easy for them sometimes. For instance, when they are stressed about a project for school with a looming deadline and are feeling angry and consequently are short with everyone, I gently ask them when the assignment was given and when they started working on it. The answers to these questions are generally reluctantly given. Eventually we come around to the fact that it’s not the teacher’s fault or the fault of the weather or the cats or anything like that. In fact there is no fault it was simply a choice they made to wait until the last minute to work on the project and there are consequences to that choice. While this may not be what they want to hear at that moment, they understand that they have a choice. That pays off because we then also talk about the choice they have now that they are down to the wire, they can continue to stress about it or they can focus and do the best they can. It’s almost always less bleak than it seemed to them once they take a breath and refocus. It’s not always easy though walking that path with them, but it’s always worth it. It’s amazing to see what they can do once they realize they really do have choices and really can create their lives through those choices.

Of course it also means that I can’t then turn around the next day and be short with them about a choice that I made. We definitely shine the light on the path for each other, which is a wonderful and challenging gift.

So while I love practicing peace with every step, sometimes those steps do seem to be uphill. Fortunately, the view of my life from the peak is breathtaking!

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ 58 Gratitude

I am blessed. I have many wonderful people in my life. I am grateful for the time I get to spend with them. Tonight I had the opportunity to spend some quiet time with two new friends. It is such a gift to spend quality time with people, to get to know them on a deeper level, to become better acquainted with their hearts and to share my own heart. Last weekend I had an amazing girls' night with six friends. It was a night filled with laughter, sharing, foot rubs, popcorn and just plain snuggling on the couch. I love that I have girlfriends I can snuggle with!

One of the best parts of all these relationships is the gratitude I have for them in the moment of the experience of them. I think that is because this year has been full of reminder after reminder about how precious life is and how precious each moment with loved ones is.

Gratitude and love go hand in hand. Gratitude is an expression of the love I’m feeling. Gratitude is an affirmation of love. I give thanks for each of the beautiful hearts that I share this path with; your light in my life is a gift beyond measure.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 56 Sacred Moments

An interesting day. I was listening to an interview on the radio today. There was some discussion of the interviewee’s travels to sacred places. I had that pang of, oh I’d love to travel to some of the worlds sacred places and immerse myself in that energy. At first there was a longing to it and a wishing. Then I remembered the title of a book called Everyday Sacred and I realized I was wishing for something I already have.

Each moment is sacred. Every place I walk was touched by ancestors. There is nowhere I can be where Spirit is not. Everything and every moment is sacred. Then I remembered the demonstration I had received of sacred moments just this morning.

As I was walking along the sidewalk some movement caught my eye. I looked down to the swath of grass between the sidewalk and the road and there was a mourning dove sitting there. It didn’t fly away when I looked at it. I stopped. I was concerned at first that it was hurt. I was standing only a foot or so away from it, but still it didn’t take flight. I didn’t see any signs of injury. It just stood there looking at me and I stood there looking back. It was a beautiful moment of intimacy being that near to each other and there was such openness in my heart as I looked at my bird friend. Love passed between us as we looked at each other, sensed each other. I was grateful to get to be so near to the beautiful creature without scaring it. I couldn’t help but smile with the joy of that moment. I didn’t recognize it as sacred until I was wishing for those sacred places they spoke of on the radio. It was then that I went back and felt that moment with the dove and knew the sacredness of it and knew that it is available in each moment.

Even in moments of sorrow, like when later in the day I heard about another shooting at my alma mater Virginia Tech. I know that today’s incident was not the same as the one that claimed 33 lives, but the sorrow for those involved is the same. Each life makes ripples and so does the loss of life. So I took a few moments to honor the sacredness of the lives lost there today. I was grateful for the reminder I had this morning of the sacredness of each moment, but only now as I’m writing these words am I struck by the fact that it was a mourning dove that served as my teacher.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 55 Voice

Tonight I watched some friends sing at an open mic night. I love to hear people sing, especially those moments when the voice is the only instrument you hear. There is something so powerful about a voice, it doesn’t matter whether is gravely or pure and true, as long as it’s coming from the heart and soul. It transports and inspires me.

Here’s the thing though, I always sit there and think, How brave! I know I’m not the only one in the audience thinking that. Yet, why should it take such courage to share our voices? One of our first great accomplishments in life is to learn to speak, to use our voice. When then do we become self conscious of it? When and why does it suddenly take courage?

It is a gift that we each have that is unique and beautiful. Yes, of course I’m not just talking about singing anymore. I’m talking about sharing our hearts, our souls through our words, sharing our insights and knowings, sharing our dreams and desires. These are things that should carry us to great heights, we should be able to soar on the notes of our own songs and celebrate how they weave together with others to create a universal harmony.

I think part of our hesitation is that we have not been taught to be good listeners. It seems we rarely take the time to be still when another is talking and truly hear them. If someone is honoring us by speaking from their heart surely we should honor them in return by listening from ours.

From a place of love I will share my voice and from that same place of love I will hear yours.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 54 Moon Lessons

Over the past week or two I’ve been watching the moon. I had never really thought about it before, but I love that in terms of the moon the opposite of full is not empty, but new. I love that perspective. I think it's a way of looking at things that we should adopt.

I have thought a lot about the idea of empty and full this year and truly have been watching the moon all year while pondering it. I wonder why it didn’t strike me until now the importance of the words we use to describe her.

When she is new she is neither empty nor hidden. She is there in the sky just as ever she was, only sitting quietly in the stillness, in the shadow. For me it’s as if she has turned her face away from us and gone within herself, only to slowly reemerge stage by stage, brighter and brighter. She has gone within to the light she can only truly see from there, the light that is always shining on that other side of herself and she returns to her fullness with the light shining forth, reflecting that light to all. What a wonderful teacher is the moon!

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 53 Indeed

Yesterday I was thinking about the word indeed. It is a word that has crept into my everyday usage over the past ten years. Until yesterday though I had never really thought about it. As my friends know I like to look at and play with words so it’s a surprise I never looked at it this way before.

It’s pretty straightforward, you break the word down and it becomes In Deed. But when I finally stopped and looked at that I was blown away. I realized the power of it when I looked at it that way. I am a firm believer in the idea that our thoughts and words have a power and energy of their own. So when I looked at indeed as In Deed I realized what I had been saying over the years. I had been calling for my yes to be shown in my actions, in my deeds. I had been calling for everything I applied the word to, to be shown in its deeds rather that its words. Underneath it all it is a word that calls for one to live life in integrity, for what you speak to be what you live, for what you believe to be expressed through your actions, your words, your choices, your deeds.

Some part of me must have understood the deeper meaning of the word because I began using it as my spiritual journey deepened. Part of me would say, my mind has finally caught up! Though I think the truth is that it is finally time for me to consciously look more deeply at it. I knew it was important as I noticed it cropping up in my writing and speaking but never stopped to consider it consciously. I just allowed it to be there and took note of it. Now I will be more conscious of the use of the word and what it means to me and how I am living it in my life and how I can live it more deeply in deed.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 52 Path to Peace Within

I had to practice peace pretty intensely this past Friday night. I received some distressing news that I couldn’t do anything about. I had no power to help or fix or heal. It was a situation that was unsettling and sad. It was a night I had all to myself too, so it was very quiet.

It was the kind of thing that knocked me out of my peace and the worry it brought with it made it challenging to remember to return to a place of peace. Worry can definitely be a distraction from my inner place of peace. I think it makes it difficult because worry takes me right to my head and out of my heart. While in my head I can come up with all sorts of scenarios that are distressing!

Eventually, once I could feel the stress in my body and could notice the stories my mind was creating I remembered I had a choice. While I was still concerned for my friend I was able to use the energy of that concern more constructively. After all at the root of the concern was love. So I focused on the love rather than the worry. I sent all the love I could knowing that it would touch her in some way, knowing that sending love to her rather than worry would help her far more.

Of course it helped me too. Once I focused on love I was able to find a little peace with the situation. I was still unsettled and feeling sadness, which of course is ok, I just wasn’t letting it run away with me and so I was able to sit with those feelings more peacefully. It was good practice in both love and peace, and goodness knows I needed both that night.

All my practice over the years of remaining in or returning to a place of peace have helped me know the path to peace within myself which aids me in returning to that feeling and place within myself when I really need it. The knowing of that anchor of peace within me has been such a gift. That gift and the returning to the focus on love was what enabled me to sleep that night.

Since then, I have also been focusing on my friend knowing the path to peace within herself and knowing that she is loved. I hope that she can feel both.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 50 Hey Lynda!

You may wonder what some of the observations I share have to do with peace and love. For me, each song sung by a child or a bird or the light on a tree or in a person’s eyes, is a heart opening moment. They are reminders of how it feels to have my heart wide open and that is how I choose to live my life. I need reminders because sometimes I forget, after all I am human. There are things in this human existence which encourage us to keep our hearts closed, safe behind walls. I tore those walls down long ago, but there are still occasions when they try to reestablish themselves. Those moments of wonder or joy on my walks and throughout my day blow like a breeze through my heart and I remember the freedom and freshness of living with it wide open.

It is with a heart wide open that I can live from peace and love. I don’t succeed in every instance, because like I said I am human. However, each time I meet a heart opening moment my heart recognizes it and checks in with me. Most times we simply rejoice together in the wonder and joy of the moment. Other times it’s a wake up call saying, Lynda, are you paying attention?

It was an interesting road to get here, but so worth the journey of learning to trust that heart and its Hey Lyndas. I’m so grateful I listened.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 49 It Matters Where the Light Falls

It matters how the light falls. There is a big difference between whether or not the light touches an object directly and whether it is lit by ambient light. The leaves that the light fell directly upon were visible in detail, in rich color, they appeared illuminated. The leaves that were lit only by the general light of morning were dull and appeared without detail.

It was a fascinating reflection to compare the effect of standing in full light or not. The tree (unless it’s an Ent) can’t move itself into the light. I can. I can choose to stand in the full light of day or linger in the half light or shadows. All are ok, but when I looked at the tree my eye was drawn to the detail and color of the leaves in the light. I knew the warmth they felt. They were radiant.

I choose to stand in full light, blinding though it may sometimes be. I choose to share my full colors. I choose to let the details of my heart be seen. And as I saw the tree do, I will radiate that light back into the world.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 47 Tao Te Ching Chapter 2

We are working with the Tao Te Ching in the meditation group that I’m a part of. This was only our second night working with it. There was a passage that stood out to me in relation to peace. It is the end of the second chapter. This particular version is from the translation by John Wu.

He accomplishes his task, but does not dwell upon it. And yet it is just because he does not dwell on it that nobody can ever take it away from him.

When we were sitting in meditation after reading the chapter aloud, I found much peace in those thoughts because for me they were about release and non-attachment. You simply do what is yours to do and keep moving forward. You don’t dwell upon it.

How wonderfully peaceful. It is sometimes difficult to do, to not be attached to outcome, but there is also such peace in it. No worrying, no planning, just living the life you are creating. We are so trained to expect a result that when you don’t expect one you almost don’t recognize at first that sense of peace that comes with it.

Simply another step in the practice of peace I suppose, until I can become like the Sage in this same chapter and manage my affairs without ado.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 46 A Smile and a Song

This morning I was walking along and I heard the voice of a little girl singing. I caught sight of her as I walked up a hill. She was maybe four or five and standing in her front yard singing with gusto. I was on the other side of the street but she saw me coming. She called out, “Here comes a lady.” I smiled to myself and as I got closer smiled to her. She was radiant, completely in her element standing there surveying the street and singing to the world.

As I got closer she smiled, waved a little shyly and said hi. I responded in kind. She asked me if I lived there. I pointed and said, “No, I live over there.” She looked where I pointed and said, “I can’t see it. Where?” I told her you couldn’t see if from where we were. We smiled at each other as she wondered where I lived that was so far away.

I continued on and she burst back into song. I couldn’t help but smile. Here was this bright, shiny light sharing her radiance with anyone who happened by, with the trees and the grass, the birds and the sun. How lucky we all were to hear her song today. Hers was a voice ringing with joy and confidence. She didn’t seem to have an intention for sharing her song, she didn’t sing louder or even keep singing as I walked by, so she wasn’t trying to impress anyone. She was simply completely in the moment singing and greeting a passerby. It was a joy to share a moment of greeting with her.

It’s amazing how much closer children can be to their joy, how much easier it is for them to be in the moment. They can teach us so much about observing and being. She certainly taught me about the gift of an innocent and heart felt smile and a song, both offered without hesitation. Thank you little light!

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 45 Lesson in Love

My children teach me a great deal about love. After we went to the screening of I Am last Friday my eleven year old was thinking about homeless people and how to help them. She struggled to find words for what she was feeling. I waited for her to find them. She said, “Well if you just walk right by someone who needs help it’s like you’re ignoring your sister or your brother and refusing to help them or to give them what they need.”

Now, as an adult I struggle with this issue. For a couple years I worked with the homeless population in Savannah. I have an idea of some of the things that contribute to homelessness and I have an idea of how difficult it is for people. I’ve never had to live it, so I can’t begin to truly know how it feels. I also know about the guy we helped out with some cash one time on the street in Savannah who had a hard luck story about being out of gas and stuck. We met him again a week or so later with the same story. When we called him on it he got angry at us as if it were our fault he had used the same story on the same people. So how do I reconcile her need to help her brothers and her sisters with what I know?

In the face of her earnest desire to give and to give from love, the choice is simple. I will give from love without judgment, for what is given in love is a gift that may work in ways I can’t begin to imagine. What we decided to do was give in a way that felt right to us. We bought a gift card to a grocery store. The next time we pass someone who we can’t just pass by, we will offer the card with love. Then we will buy another one knowing that love moves in mysterious ways.

What a blessing to have daughters who teach me so truly about love!

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 43 I Am

On Friday I went to see a screening of a film I love. It’s called I Am. It’s a documentary by the director Tom Shadyac. He made films like Ace Ventura Pet Detective, Bruce Almighty and Liar Liar. Very funny films! I Am is not a comedy though, it’s not fiction either. It’s about a journey that began from pain and desperation but ends up with inspiration!

I had the good fortune of seeing the film initially at a screening in Washington, DC that included a Q & A with Tom afterward. I was impressed with his answers to the questions. I was impressed with how he seemed to be trying to live what he believed.

What I like most about the film is that it is a testament to why I am doing this Pledge of Peace and Love. It confirms for me the power of living from the heart and the impact that has on the world we live in. It reminds me that each choice I make for love or peace is a choice made for all of us, a choice that impacts the whole (even the yogurt!). There is discussion of that impact from a scientific perspective that is fascinating. The power of love and compassion should not to be underestimated. We have the power to change our world for the better, one thought, one heart, one action at a time. The conclusion of the film is a powerful reminder of that.

The film will be released on DVD in the US on January 3, 2012. I would highly recommend it for your path of peace and love. It inspires me anew each time I see it. I’m grateful to Tom Shadyac for sharing his pain and sharing his heart. His journey illuminates us all.

You can find out more about the film at

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 42 Thanks Giving

Hmmm, with the holiday weekend I’m sadly behind in my blogging! I will try to catch up a bit.

My intention, as you might have guessed, was to blog about gratitude on Thanksgiving Day. I was apparently totally in the moment of living the gratitude and so didn’t stop to blog about it!

Gratitude has been on my mind this month in general though. I’ve witnessed friends posting on FB about it every day in November. It’s a topic of discussion on Thanksgiving in my family. My brother asked us to write ours down this year and put them in a bag. Then we each chose someone else’s to read so we would perhaps not feel so put on the spot about speaking our own gratitude. I’m not shy about expressing mine though. I have so much to be grateful for!

One of my favorite quotes is, “If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice,” by Meister Eckhart.

I believe that’s true. Thank you. My goal is to begin each day with those words, not just Thanksgiving Day. I don’t remember every morning but when I do I begin the day before getting out of bed with the thought, Thank you for this day. I follow it with the thought, Let me be a source of love (or peace) in the world today. For me those things naturally go together. If I am living from love and peace and making choices from that place then that state of gratitude comes naturally. It works the other way around too I think. If I’m consciously living in a state of gratitude then feelings of love and peace are a natural outflow of that state. I think either way it takes practice, like my practice of peace and love, but as you practice it gets easier, becomes more of a way of being rather than something you work at. I’m getting there one step at a time.

I’m grateful there are so many others walking with me along the path of peace and the path of love. I’m grateful for the lessons in my life that gently help me practice. I’m grateful for the amazing people in my life who make it so very easy to live from a place of love because they radiate love to me every day. I’m grateful for the teachers great and small who have taught me about living love and living peace. I’m grateful for the opportunity to live this life and see it from a place of gratitude which always leads me to feelings of joy, awe and wonder. I’m grateful to you for reading this and walking your own path of love and peace.

Thank you. Merci. Danke. Grazie. Gracias. Děkuji. Asante. Teşekkür ederim.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 40, Occupy Your Heart

I didn’t see this one coming. It doesn’t surprise me though if I look at it practically. I made a pledge to live and write about peace and love. What could be more a more natural result than a pledge to live each moment from the heart? And so from my morning walk recently, Occupy Your Heart was born. I am grateful.

I pledge to occupy my heart! Join me! Feel free to share it – your heart and the statements below.

Occupy Your Heart

Occupy your heart is a movement, is a way of life dedicated to living from the heart, living always from a place of love. The place we must always begin is within our own heart. It is the greatest gift we can give the world, the only way we can truly create change for the better. We let our heart be our compass. We let our heart lead. We allow our mind to work freely for the heart’s purpose. In all this we know we are contributing to a beautiful world for all.

We look from within with love upon others and see the humanity, the heart within them, knowing we are all one family, knowing there is no separation between us, no artificial boundaries that can keep us from love other than the ones we create and build ourselves.

From a place of love we create a new world.

We create a world where every creature that shares this earth is honored, where the earth we live upon is revered and protected.

We create families that are defined by the love within them. Safe spaces to be the true expressions of love that we are, where that expression is accepted and welcomed.

We create governments that serve the people, all the people, with compassion and respect. We create these governments by serving on them, by voting and speaking our hearts, by participating. We create governments where all voices are heard and honored.

We create institutions and corporations that are built upon a foundation of love. We create prosperity and social consciousness at the same time. We create corporations that have the good of the whole at heart and still provide a product or service that is needed.

We create communities where love thy neighbor is the way of life. We create neighborhoods where all are safe and welcome, where all have a home. We create schools where children are honored and nurtured and where knowledge is shared with respect by both teachers and children.

We create a world of love where none doubt their own worth, their own contribution to the whole, where all feel safe and know they are loved.

We create this world by beginning with our own hearts, by creating from the love within ourselves and sharing it unconditionally.

Lynda Allen
November 18, 2011

Monday, November 21, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 39 Cleaning out the Pantry

Practicing peace on days like today is a challenge. Nothing particularly bad happened, just a day with lots of little frustrations adding up to a big ball of frustration! That’s when I have to work the hardest to remember my peace. I have to consciously think about it each moment and remind myself to return to it, remind myself that I have a choice. I don’t always listen to the reminders right away though, but hopefully I get there eventually.

I’m not quite there yet even as I write this. However, just the act of writing it is a reminder and I can feel the peace returning. Mostly I can feel it returning because I’m thinking of that little baby earth and what it might be feeling if the ripples of my frustration reach it. Here’s the difficult part I always return to, surely if my ripples of peace contribute to nourishing the baby earth then conversely my ripples of frustration do not nourish it. It’s kind of like feeding the baby junk food. It can only grow in an unhealthy way from a diet of junk, just as I can only grow in an unhealthy way from a diet of junk.

I guess I will have to take a moment and let go of some of the old stories that are playing in my head and release the old fears that come with them. Sometimes I guess you really do just have to walk right into the pantry with the trash can and just start throwing things out. It’s the only way to make room for the new, healthy items you really want. If I let them linger there in the dark on the back of the shelf they will only be a source of temptation to relive that old pattern. I will have to be more thorough this time in looking in the dark corners and cleaning things out.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 36, Love Thy Neighbor

My blogging begins early today. Earlier this week a prominent member of our community passed away. He was a developer, a business man, and a philanthropist. To me he was one thing more, a neighbor.

Did I know him as a neighbor as far as going to cookouts together, or waiting at the bus stop with our kids? No. But by being his neighbor I learned a wonderful lesson about love and an important one about judgment.

I am ashamed to admit this next part, but I will because it’s an important part of the learning. When I first moved into this home 14 years ago I was still at the end of my righteous indignation phase. I was pretty good at it. And here I was living down the street from a developer that it seemed owned everything in town and who was responsible for Central Park and that horrendous eyesore the Central Park sign that blots out the sun. How could the word park be used for it when there used to be farm land there (and a golf course) and now there were parking lots and big box stores galore? Surely I had much fodder for my indignation! This is the part I’m not so proud of, I even thought of him as the Onceler from Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax.

It took a long time for that attitude to shift in me. First, I became less righteous and more neutral. But it wasn’t until the last couple years that I actually began to see him as a neighbor. I walk by his home a lot in the mornings so I found he came into my mind frequently. As my morning walks became a form of meditation for me I began noticing how I walked past his home, what thoughts I was holding in mind as I did. I began thinking of him as a man, with a family and a heart. I began thinking of him as someone who was doing the best he could, just like the rest of us. I began remembering that we are not separate, that the separation had been in my own thoughts, in my own heart. It didn’t mean I had to agree with every choice he ever made, but it meant that I had to remember to begin from love no matter whether I agreed or not. I had to remember that I had no way of knowing what was in his heart as he made his choices. I could only know what was in my own heart as I made new ones in relation to him.

And so I did make new choices. I chose to radiate love every time I walked past his home. I surrounded it with that love as I walked by. It felt wonderful! I didn’t have to carry indignation with me on my walks and in my world. It only weighed me down. It was so much more joyful to carry love and let it flow freely from me, and that’s what I did every time I walked past his house.

It never occurred to me to wonder whether or not he really felt it, it just felt so good to give it. Then on Monday morning as I was walking past the house I felt this sense, this thought that reached me and said, Thank you, I do appreciate the love. It made me smile and I nodded toward the house and said, I’m glad.

A couple days later I heard that he had passed away. I stopped when I heard the news and wondered if he really had said thank you the other day, if maybe he had been in a state of grace at that moment and could genuinely feel the love I was sending. I’m glad to think our relationship ended with love. Rest in Peace Mr. Silver, thank you for the powerful lesson in love thy neighbor.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 35, Yes!

I have found that one of the most peaceful choices I can make on this journey is willingness, simply saying yes. So much has shifted in my life by the use of that one word. Trust me, there are times when I have said it reluctantly and times when I have said it through gritted teeth with a great deal of resistance, my eyes rolling at the heavens (just ask Christine!). Yet, always I have said it, and meant it on some level. I have been willing to shift, to learn, even when I didn’t know what the lesson would entail. Sometimes it’s been easy and joyful and other times a bit more challenging to say the least. But I wouldn’t be where I am or who I am today if I had said no.

One of the surprises I found was how much peace there was in saying yes. It takes a great deal more energy to resist through no. There is release in yes. There is work too, but the work begins from a place of (mostly) surrender. Even the times when my jaw was set and my hands were on my hips, the yes came from a part of me that knew better, that knew the peace in yes.

Yes, to things that will feed and free my soul, yes to things that honor the self, yes to learning (gently please!), yes to expanding my awareness, yes to living the life I know I want to live even if I don’t know how to get there. It turns out that how to get there always begins with yes. After all it’s got to be more difficult to see the path in front of me if my arms are folded across my chest and my eyes are stubbornly closed with my no. Yes, opens my eyes and peacefully opens my way.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 34, Nature's Symphony

My internet connection crashed yesterday so I can only plead for understanding in missing yesterday’s post! I know what I was going to write about though; the rain.

Yesterday morning I went for a walk in the rain. I love walking in the rain, especially a warm rain. It wasn’t exactly warm, but it was lovely. Nature is such an incredible resource of peace and joy that I can find a way to tap into every day if I only look around me. For example, the other day I was feeling nervous about something I had to do and not much seemed to calm me down. As I was setting off to drive to my destination I happened to look up and above me an eagle was flying. I immediately remembered that I wasn’t flying alone and returned to a place of peace. It was an amazing gift.

The gift of nature yesterday was the rain. It being fall, there were many leaves on the ground. The rain fell, tap, tap, tap upon the fallen leaves. I started to notice a rhythm. I found that the sound changed based on the type of leaves I was walking over. Some had a harder, crisper sound and some made a much gentler tap, tap, tap.

I smiled to myself the whole way as I listened to the morning’s concerto. As I neared the end of my walk the percussion section was in full swing and I passed a bush full of singing birds at the same time. What an amazing harmony they created! I felt so honored to be the recipient of their beautiful music. It was a most peaceful way to begin my day, by walking through nature’s symphony.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 33

Tonight in our meditation group we worked with the mantra Ong SoHung. It translates as Ong - The Creative Consciousness of the Universe, SoHung - I am that / I am Thou. We used a recording of it by Guru Singh. In and of itself it is beautiful. But there was beauty beyond that as well.

It was such a joyful experience listening to the recording, chanting along with it and hearing the voices of the group all at the same time. Part of the mantra is said to open the heart. It certainly does that!

I haven’t adequate words for the blissful feeling it left me with or the feeling of the energy of creation that seemed to fill the room. I can express my gratitude though. I’m grateful for the love that guides our meditation group always to a place of peace and light. I’m grateful for the shared experience of the group that always provides insight. I’m grateful for the peace it brings into my life and into my home each week. I’m grateful for the individuals who show up each week in person and in Spirit. I’m grateful for an open heart that is willing to lose itself in the bliss of the moment. For it is in that bliss I find the creative consciousness of the Universe, and find that indeed, I am that!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 32

On my walk this morning I noticed a flower, a beautiful white flower, sticking out from under a fence. I smiled at its beauty and was grateful that I had looked down at that moment to witness its beauty. After I was passed the flower I wondered if anyone else would notice its light before it finished its life cycle. I was grateful to have been able to be there to witness it. I’m sure the flower would have bloomed as brightly, as grandly, had it been alone on a rocky slope because that is just what it does. Yet, still I wondered if sharing it’s beauty made it shine a little brighter, just as it had brightened my walk.

Then I began to wonder if that is the greatest gift we can give; being witness to each other’s beauty. Surely each of us has beauty within us whether it’s hidden carefully behind walls of hurt and pain, long since forgotten along with innocence, simply veiled behind a difficult day, or shining radiantly forth in the wilderness. What if just one person looked at the troubled child and saw his or her beauty? What if one person when passing a homeless person on the street looked past the label and saw the light? What if I saw the beauty in you and allowed you a glimpse of it reflected back in my smile?

The lesson of love I learned is that there is a gift to both the source of and the witness of beauty. The witness carries ever the touch of that beauty upon the heart and in the memory and the source carries forth the joy of having been seen.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 31

I had the pleasure of seeing the play Rent today at the University of Mary Washington. They did a fabulous job. I had never seen it before and was moved to hear so many messages of love in it. There was reminder after reminder to live and love life to the fullest in each moment.

It also reminded me how lucky I am to have such amazing people in my life. I spent last weekend with my three sisters for our annual Sisters’ Weekend. It’s a weekend I look forward to every year because it is a joy to share time with my sisters. We have continued the tradition for 12 years and spend most of our weekends together laughing. Spending that weekend with them also made me think about all the wonderful women in my life and what a blessing they each are.

I have a wonderful friend in my life whom I refer to as my Heartmate - it was the only word that adequately described our friendship, connection and love for each other. We have walked beside each other for the last 11 years. We have been through major life transitions together and have shared our joys and sorrows. She has helped me remember that I can fly when I have forgotten. I even wrote a poem for her called Leaping. She has held my hand and my heart every step of journey. She is a blessing beyond measure and it is a joy to know her. I treasure each moment we spend together.

There are many blessings in my life in the form of friends, who each provide light, love, wisdom, joy, commiseration, a shoulder to cry on and inspiration. They are each a source of love in my life and I am deeply grateful.

To all my friends who provide wonderful opportunities for love to be shared, thank you. It is a joy to practice a path of peace and love with you.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 29

I received a wonderful gift of love this evening. Someone dear to me simply held the space of peace and love for me while I wasn’t in that space myself. It had been quite a hectic afternoon and evening and I was running very late for a dinner party. I was bringing a dish that needed to be prepared and cooked and I didn’t arrive until after the appointed time, so I knew I would be delaying dinner for everyone, and I wasn’t even dressed for the dinner yet! I was not in a happy mood when I arrived.

The fabulous man in my life could see and feel very clearly where I was and luckily he was in a more peaceful state of being. He hugged me even though I couldn’t really receive it, looked me in the eye and told me he loved me. Then he went about the other things he had to do very peacefully. I don’t know if he knew it but I could feel that peace radiating from him. Slowly I was able to let myself feel it more deeply and eventually was able to allow myself to align with it. I don’t know that he did it intentionally, but on some level I know he knew it was what I needed; just to be able to feel a reminder of peace.

We really can help each other along our paths of peace. Of course there will be times when we aren’t feeling peaceful, and while we can hopefully center ourselves again, it is wonderful to have someone who can be that beacon of peace to help guide us back to a safe and calm harbor.

Sight to See now available!!

This is in a way a post for the Pledge of Peace and Love because this novel was a work of love for me.

In celebration of 11/11/11 I am happy to announce that I published my novel Sight to See through for the Kindle!!! It's available here. If you don't have a Kindle, not to worry, you can get the Kindle software for free to read books on your computer here.

It is such a joy for me to finally be able to share this story. It was an amazing adventure writing it...

Years ago for the second year of the Project Greenlight competition I wrote a screenplay called "The Badianus Manuscript" and submitted it. The script made it into the top 250. Some of the feedback I received was that it would make a good novel. So foolishly I thought ok, I can do that. And I did.

Writing the novel was a wonderful process. It was like taking dictation as Dawn came and sat with me and told me her story. It was quite a journey, filled with incredible coincidences - including the hurricane in the story being name Hurricane Juan and there being a Hurricane Juan that year! It came to a beautiful conclusion with a trip to the Hopi reservation in Arizona to visit a woman there who had been willing to read the story for me for authenticity. At the reservation I found a church without walls just as I had written about in the story, though I had seen it in my mind I had no idea there was actually one on the reservation!

Here's the synopsis of Sight to See: Dawn Saunders, a young woman of Hopi ancestry, is on a spiritual quest to discover the true meaning of her gift as a seer. Dawn’s journey begins at a tender age. In a dream when she was eight she saw her father struck by lightning only to see the image come vividly to life soon after. Consequently, Dawn considered her sight to be more of a curse than a gift. By the age of thirty, Dawn’s gift urgently demands her attention through a series of dreams and waking visions. Drawn by the power and spiritual nature of the visions, Dawn sets out upon a journey that will teach her to trust herself and her ability to see. In her dreams and visions she is visited by an ancient Aztec woman and an eagle who reveal to Dawn both the past and the future. The dreams and visions lead Dawn to her Aunt Meredith, also a seer, in New York City and eventually to a connection with a grandmother Dawn never met, whom she inherited her gift from. She also encounters Juan, a 450-year-old Aztec man who is strangely familiar to Dawn, and Juan the category 4 hurricane. Dawn must choose between believing in herself and her ability to see, and questioning her own sanity. Overcoming her doubts comes at a high price, as it takes standing in the eye of the storm to alter Dawn’s sight and enable her to see clearly.

There are so many that believed in this story along the way and who have read it for me and encouraged me. Thank you!

If you read it and enjoy it share it with friends or post a review! Enjoy in joy! Lynda

*cover photo for Sight to See was taken from the Hubble telescope by STScI for NASA under Contract NAS5-26555.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 28

Today I had to practice peace quite actively. I was not feeling peaceful about the situation at Penn State. I’m sorry to see such an illustrious career end this way, but as I’ve been writing about throughout this pledge, we all make choices. A variety of people at Penn State made choices in relation to this incident, and as far as I can tell very few of those choices took into account a young boy who had been violently attacked. That left me feeling decidedly unpeaceful.

In fact it left me feeling quite disturbed as I heard and read more. Normally I don’t delve deeply into stories like this because I don’t find it constructive. This one though caught my attention. A university of Penn State’s stature treating a crime against a child with such little care for the child is unacceptable, unbelievable. Each person will have to live with the choices they made along the way, including Joe Paterno. Yet how does that compare to a child who didn’t have a choice?

In my less than peaceful state I wondered how differently everyone would have acted in the situation had the victim been the child of someone they knew. Where were the people who know they are all our children?

It was a sad day and yet I was glad to hear many voices of reason amid the din. Voices that said yes, he was a wonderful coach and yes maybe he wasn’t personally responsible, but didn’t he think about that child afterward and wonder why nothing was done? Integrity as a football coach isn’t the same as integrity as a human being. The well being of a football program isn’t more important than the well being of a child.

If there is any peace to be found in this for me it is in the hope that no other children will be harmed now that it has been brought to light, and that we may all be reminded through this sad situation that each choice we make is important and touches the lives of others.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 27

Here’s the thing I’ve been reminded of again and again through this pledge and over the past ten years, the big picture is the little picture. What I mean by that is that the only way I can help change the big picture or make the world a better place, is to live it in my own life. I can’t shift the world but I can shift my world, I can make my choices choices for love and peace.

It was relevant this week because I was thinking about 11/11/11 and wow, shouldn’t I be at some big event on such a momentous date? The answer I found is that I should be with those I love. Love and peace here and now is the important thing on any date.

It was a loud message and I somehow just started seeing the big picture differently. Even the big names of the day talking about change and shift can’t change the world single handedly. They provide information and inspiration for people and then those people can take that back into their world and create their own shift. They can’t shift it for you, just like nobody can shift it for me but me.

However, I do believe that your choice for love makes it that much easier for me to choose love too. The more love there is, the more we can feel it and the more we feel it the easier it is to be in that place of love. Which brings me back around full circle to the big picture is the little picture.

Thank you for each choice you have made from love in your picture that brought love more into focus in my own.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 26

A choice for Love that I made yesterday was in relation to the meditation group that I host. As I wrote about last week I had a wonderful hallelujah experience and so went searching for a mantra to use during our meditation group that might reflect a little of the joy I felt that morning. I searched for one that incorporated hallelujah. I wasn’t sure what I would find or if I would find anything that would work. I was pleasantly surprised.

There is a recording called The Five Religions Chant, which goes like this:
Jehovah Jehovah,
Hallelujah Hallelujah
La il il la, la il la
Ra ay ma Rama
Saaat Naaam.

I was so excited to find it, not just because it incorporated hallelujah, but because it felt like the intent of it was the same as I felt that morning last week – all voices raised in joy using their own words for their gratitude and rejoicing. I was filled with love when I found it.

I did go through some moments of hesitation though about us using other people’s words for God in our meditation. I was cautious to not tread on anyone’s sacred traditions. After some thought and discussion about it I decided that if I returned to my original intention of love then it would be fine to use. I think that was the intent of the creator of the song as well. So it was with love that I sang the words to the Five Religion Chant. It didn’t transport me quite as much as my hallelujah day, but I believe each choice for love helps bring us all that much closer to that day when all seven billion of us raise our voices as one. Hallelujah!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 25

The peace that I felt today was through beauty. It was also a reminder of a practical lesson about practicing peace learned years ago.

I turned a corner this morning and raised my eyes. Ahead of me was the steeple of a church shrouded in fog. Above the trees to the right of the steeple the sun was breaking through the fog with gentle rays of orange light. It was a gorgeous sight.

I had an interesting experience years ago with fog. I was driving along the Skyline Drive hoping for a beautiful view. Instead I saw ahead of me a cloud that had settled on the road.

The thing was that from the peak I was on I could also see the end of the cloud and the road in the light of the sun beyond that. Because of that preview, I reached the fog bank with the knowing that there was an end to it. I knew that all I had to do was keep my eyes on the road ahead of me and keep moving and I would get through the fog and return to the light. I also remembered that when moving through fog it doesn’t help to turn the light up brighter in order to chase it away; it would only serve to hinder my sight rather than help it. The best thing I could do was to continue to move gently, purposefully and peacefully through the fog with my eyes straight ahead and with the knowing of the return of the light as my guide.

Ever since that day I’ve always enjoyed fog. If my focus isn’t entirely on dispelling it, there is a beautiful stillness to fog. And as it lifts there is the incredible returning of the light if I will only raise my eyes to see it.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 24

OK, here’s where I get to be peaceful towards myself! I am giving myself permission to not have to catch up on the days I missed blogging while I was on my annual pilgrimage with my sisters! We get together for a sisters weekend every year and my focus was on them and enjoying our time together, not worrying about the blog. Therefore I granted myself special dispensation.

That doesn’t mean, however, that I didn’t learn something about practicing love and peace this weekend though. In fact, I learned a very important lesson – the more you practice the more opportunities you receive for practicing!

I had a completely unexpected opportunity to practice living from love while walking through the Atlanta airport. I was walking between gates and had two hours before my next flight. A young man in a Delta t-shirt stopped me and asked me when my next flight was. I told him the truth. At first I thought it was a survey of some sort. He started to talk about a free flight and sky miles I would receive and I looked up and saw behind him a sign about a credit card and realized what it was about. I wasn’t in a rush and he was polite and friendly so I didn’t try to escape but just stayed open and friendly in return. I’m really glad I did.

Right in the middle of what he was saying he looked down at my hand and said something about a tattoo. I realized where he was looking and was amazed he could have seen anything. I have a tattoo on my wrist but I was wearing a long sleeve shirt and a long sleeve jacket over it. I swear he would have needed x-ray vision to see it. Or perhaps he was just seeing with different eyes. So I pulled up my sleeve and showed it to him and he asked me what it meant. It is three infinity symbols with Chinese characters inside one of the infinities. I pointed to the characters and said it meant eternal grace in Chinese. I never know what kind of reaction I will get when I tell people what it means and I certainly didn’t expect the reaction I got from him.

He asked me about Grace and what it meant to me. I looked at him and he looked and sounded sincere so I began to tell him about why I tattooed eternal grace on my arm. I told him I had never found a definition of Grace that made sense to me. I told him I didn’t believe that God would grant Grace to one person and yet withhold it from another. I told him I started writing about Grace so I could better understand it. So he asked me what Grace meant to me now. I explained that for me it was about an awareness of a connection to the Divine within my heart and in the knowing of that connection allowing it to flow. I told him I think we all have access to Grace each moment but we build walls that block the flow of it. He looked at me and said, "Yes, we definitely all build walls."

I kept looking at him as we talked and feeling like there was this light shining on us right there in the middle of the Atlanta airport, like this opening of Grace had happened and it was so beautiful.

I told him writing about Grace led me to start an annual event called A Day of Grace. He asked me what we do at A Day of Grace. I told him we practice ways to take those walls down and allow Grace to flow. He asked me where I hold this event and looked a little disappointed to find it was in Virginia. I invited him to check out the website for A Day of Grace and read more about it there. I even told him that there is an email link on the site, so that after he read it he could write to me and let me know what he thought. It was a beautiful conversation and connection.

After we had talked about it for a while he looked at me and said, “I think I’ve received more from you than what I have to offer (referring to the credit card pitch) so forget about it.”

I was so deeply moved and truly hope he visits the site and writes to me. He asked for the address again before I left but I didn’t write it down for him. I will see if he follows up. It would be lovely if he does.

The whole conversation though was such a gift. I had recently been thinking about this year’s A Day of Grace, which will be happening on December 21st and here was this wonderful, unlooked for opportunity to talk about it and put the energy of it in motion.

If I had not been walking through that airport having been practicing love and peace so consciously I’m not sure I would have stopped to talk to him and taken the opportunity for a heart connection like that. What a gift I would have missed! But I didn’t miss it and I’m grateful that I have been practicing so that I could have the joy of meeting him and sharing a moment of Grace with him.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 20

It was just a typo, right? Wrong. It was a statement of truth that I didn’t realize I was making. I posted on my Facebook page today a link to the song Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley. I love his rendition of that song. There is such restrained power in it and even though it’s not exactly a happy song it makes my heart soar to hear him sing it. With the post I said, “I just seemed like an Hallelujah kind of morning.” Of course I meant to say “it” just seemed like, not “I”. Then I thought again. Actually I do feel like a Hallelujah this morning.

As I set out on my walk I wondered why that was. Then I remembered writing my blog last night. It was after 11:00 when I posted it and I was pretty tired. I put it out there and for a moment thought, “Why am I doing this?” Then I remembered that the reason I began the Pledge of Peace and Love was to help nourish the new baby earth I feel has been born and that I carry in my heart. When I remembered that, my heart glowed and my tiredness didn’t matter.

When I thought of that moment this morning in my hallelujah state, I smiled and joy again radiated from me. I’m doing this for that baby earth and the now 7 billion people living upon this planet. Seven billion people. I absolutely glowed with joy as I thought of those 7 billion all raising their voices in an hallelujah (or whatever word of gratitude they use) at the same moment. Think of it, 7 billion voices singing gratitude, 7 billion hearts open wide, 7 billion souls united in joy. Wow! The feeling of that made me actually laugh as I walked. I figured anyone who saw me walking would have thought I had gone off the deep end so great was my joy.

I will let that vision of joy sustain me and yet will live here in this moment in peace and love. I think that is the only way we can create that future, is by living it here, now.

Loudly and clearly my soul answered my own question: that is why I’m doing this, that is why I’m doing my best to let peace and love guide me each day. For the 7 billion and for the One.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 19

Peace is just one breath away. That is what I remind myself of some days, days like today in fact. And when I remember to listen it’s invaluable.

Ironically Tuesdays seem to be my least peaceful days at the moment. The irony is due to the fact that on Tuesday nights I host a meditation group. With juggling two jobs, one daughter’s after school cheer class, the other’s various activities, blogging, life as a single mom, etc. I find there isn’t too much time on Tuesdays for cleaning up and preparing both physically and mentally for meditation group anymore. That has left me feeling less than peaceful on some Tuesdays over the past month or so. Being a firm believer in intention I have found it perplexing, because how can I set a space with peace if I’m not feeling peaceful? Thankfully, it seems that I have so far always found that place before the group begins, but why create that way to begin with was what I was asking myself.

Today was one of those days when I was feeling less than peaceful as the afternoon came to a close, in fact I was feeling quite overwhelmed. After some time of fretting and rubbing my face over and over as if I could wipe the stress away, I finally remembered to breathe. I had a rant going in my head but some small part of me remembered that there was another option. I’m so grateful to that small voice. I paused and took a breath. One simple breath shifted it.

It gave me the opportunity to take even a tiny step backward and look at it differently. Perhaps I could find a way to make things work better, more smoothly, less hectic. I do have two children who are perfectly capable of helping with things around the house. I could do the cleaning over two days instead of one so I wouldn’t feel so rushed. There were several things I could think of that might lessen the stress. The most important was just to remember to breathe. Probably my friends who join me on Tuesdays might not mind a stray cat hair or two around the house anyway. After all they are practitioners of peace too.

Next week we will see if I can practice peace for myself and create differently. I will try beginning with a breath and see what amazing things happen from there.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 18

I had a very practical practice of peace yesterday and yet it was a wonderful reminder how returning to peace can shift a situation. I had a dentist appointment. I’m not afraid of the dentist and the cleanings don’t bother me too much. It’s not my favorite thing to do but I do it dutifully.

This visit the hygienist used a different instrument. Usually they use the little pick to work at the plaque or whatever it is they scrape off your teeth. This time she used a motorized one that made that lovely sound the drill makes and of course creates a vibration when touching your teeth. It wasn’t necessarily more uncomfortable than the regular way I was used too, just different and equally uncomfortable!

As she was working I noticed my body. My hands, which had been folded gently over my stomach, were now holding on to each other for dear life and my whole body was tense as I resisted the sensations. I closed my eyes and thought; well I might as well practice! I focused on that anchor of peace within myself and knowing that it is always there. I let my body relax and centered myself in that peace. Soon I found that I could even focus peace on her fingers as they worked, knowing that sharing that peace could help us both. Of course, I had to return to that center of peace more than once but it was amazing how different the cleaning was when I was in that peace. The experience of pain shifted. I don’t know if she simply didn’t touch my gums during that time or if my perception of the pain shifted, but it no longer hurt at all. I’m not saying I would want to go through surgery without anesthesia or anything, but it was definitely a different experience when I was sitting there in a state of peace.

Practicing peace can be very practical.

There was another interesting moment before the session. We were talking about chocolate because after all it was Halloween. She explained that chocolate is not actually bad for your teeth because of the fat content, which apparently lessens the possibility of it creating tooth decay. She really never should have told me that! However, that wasn’t the interesting part. At one point in relation to the chocolate she said, “I don’t think anything God made can be bad.” That got my attention. In response I said, “I wish people would consider that in relation to people. They may not always make good choices but that doesn’t make them bad.” She paused and agreed. It was a moment that gave us both something to think about.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 17

This afternoon my daughters and I went to the pumpkin patch. We go to the same place every year. We love it. There are horses, cows, alpacas, and swings, hay to climb on, a zip line and of course pumpkins. It was a gorgeous day, warm and sunny with a beautiful blue sky. It was a gift. Knowing that it was a gift in the moment of it came from practicing peace and love.

Our lives get so busy sometimes that I know I am not always fully present with them. This afternoon was just about us being together and having a good time. It was an absolute joy to be there focused on each other and the gorgeous day. They chased each other around on the hay bales. We pushed each other on the swings and zip line. We laughed and found perfectly imperfect pumpkins. It was so nice to gift each other the present of presence.

They are a joy in my life and I’m glad to be walking a path that reminds me to honor the moments we have together and to at least notice when I’m not being completely present, so that I can work towards a life more mindful of each moment. Today the moments were golden and I’m filled with gratitude.

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 16

I’m a little behind on the blog! Weekends it seems are more difficult to keep up with. I would think it would actually be easier on the weekend with more free time but it turns out free time is hard to come by!

I don’t want to skip yesterday though. I had the opportunity yesterday to listen to an interview with two friends on an internet radio station. The interview was about providing caregiving for their Mother and their son, but really their story is about amazing lessons in love, love of family and love of self.

They taught me so much in one hour. I was so grateful to them for sharing their wisdom and their hearts. Not only did they learn a great deal about the process of caregiving but also about themselves. They shared from a genuine desire to help others through their own lessons learned. I am not in a position of having to be a caregiver in the way that they were and are, yet there was much for me to learn from their experiences.

They spoke about navigating the health care system, which while sometimes challenging, they proved can still be handled with grace. They didn’t seem to let obstacles stop them; they simply saw them as challenges to be overcome, not as dead ends. They didn’t see people in the system as enemies but as allies, who if they could find the right questions to ask, would help them achieve their goals. They didn’t see conversations with family about caregiving as conflict; they saw it as opportunities for the family to have open communication so that they would all understand each other, rather than make assumptions about where the others were in their thinking. They loved and honored themselves enough to know that they had to express the limits they knew they had, in order to be present and not drained for the caregiving they wanted to be able to provide. And inspiringly they were able to move through the life changing accident their son was involved in that left him in a wheelchair, with hope and positivity and come through it seeing good that came from the process. I’m certain there were dark moments and days but that is not where they chose to dwell.

They are an incredible example to me of living from peace and love. I’m grateful to know them and to have their example as an inspiration. Thank you Kit and Randy.

If you would like to listen to their interview it is at .

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 15

Yesterday, and all this week really, I got to be witness to incredible acts of love. Not far from where I live in Virginia, an eight year old autistic boy was lost in the woods last Sunday while on a hike with his father. They searched all of Sunday and into the night with heat sensing equipment but didn’t find him. The police put out a call for volunteers. Over the course of the week thousands of people from all over showed up to volunteer. The terrain in the park was heavy with underbrush and briars, marshy areas and rocky cliffs. There was also a river in one area of the park. People were warned by the search coordinators that this was not easy work because of the terrain. The warnings did not deter them as people showed up in groups or on their own to help find this little boy. They showed up every day by the hundreds even over a thousand to the point where they had to turn volunteers away.

Friday was a day that I could offer my help. My daughters had appointments at 7:00 a.m. but when they were finished and dropped at school by around 8:15 a.m. I was ready to head out of town to try to arrive by the 9:00 a.m. time they had set for volunteers. I knew someone involved with the search and he had suggested that I call him before I left town to check in. I called him as I was driving out of town. It was a little before 8:30 and he told me they already had over 1000 people waiting in line to volunteer! While I had a moment of disappointment at not being able to do something constructive myself, I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of love that had been offered all week for this little boy and his family. It was absolutely beautiful and an incredible testament to the power of love.

At around 2:00 p.m. they found him alive and well about a mile from where he had been lost. He was taken to a hospital and reunited with his family. Though with the display of love shown to him this week I think his family is much larger than he might have thought. I’m grateful to be part of that family and am inspired by such love! Clearly you don’t have to search far to find immense love in the world.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 14

Sometimes I think the best choice for peace is silence. Twice over the past week I could have chosen to react to something in a moment when it would indeed have been reacting. Or I could have chosen to be still and silent with the issue and respond at another time rather than react. It wasn’t avoiding what had come up, simply choosing to wait until I could respond from a place of peace. I’m happy to say that I chose peace over my Italian reaction nature! In both situations it was clearly the right choice.

That’s a significant part of the path of peace for me, those moments of choice and recognizing them in the midst of them rather than afterward. This pledge has truly made me so much more aware of my choices on a moment by moment basis. Occasionally it’s annoying! I would love to just react in a good old human sort of way. But it seems that the good old human way is shifting to a new way and I want to be part of that shift. So, I will gratefully continue this pledge and celebrate the awareness it has brought me. Making the conscious choice for peace feels wonderful and hopefully the more I practice the more it will become a choice I don’t have to be so conscious of, because it will be my natural way of being, the new way.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 13

Tonight I had an experience that was less than peaceful. I was in the parking lot of a store and a woman was walking out with a small girl who was maybe 2 or 3 years old. The child was crying loudly and the mom was clearly frustrated. First of all, they had just come out of a costume store that has many scary displays in it, so it wouldn’t surprise me if she had been frightened by something in the store. For a small person like that, the large displays of monsters and blood covered babies would be frightening I’m sure. Obviously I know nothing about the Mom or how her day was or what her life is like. I do know she had the girl by the wrist and was dragging her along. She leaned down and said something like, “Stop crying or I’m going to smack you in the mouth.” I don’t remember if the word was smack or not it was something forceful like that, not slap, but I do remember that she threatened to hit her in the face. This of course did not stop the child from crying. So she leaned down again and said, “Do you want me to smack you in the mouth?” If it hadn’t been so sad it would have almost been comical. What kind of question is that? Who on earth would say yes to that question?! But it was too sad to be comical. Now trust me, as a parent I understand frustration and your children pushing you to the edge of your patience. We have all been there as parents. But her threat to hit the child in the face carried a violence with it that I could feel from 20 feet away. Our words carry energy of their own. As I heard someone say recently our words are create-tive. We create with them. I didn’t want to imagine what was being created for that little girl. My hope is that it was just a moment of frustration rather than and action waiting to happen.

The other difficult part of it was that I honestly didn’t know what to do. I wanted to intervene in some way but I feared that if I spoke to her I could make things worse for the girl. I didn’t even think particularly peaceful thoughts in the moment since I was worried about the child. How do I bring peace to a moment like that? I certainly don’t feel like I did tonight. I’m not sure what the right thing would have been to do. I wish I had thought of something brilliant in that moment to diffuse the situation. I think the best I can do at this point is to continue to send love to the little girl and should I come across a situation like that again, remember to stay in my own peace so that I can, at the very least, radiate it to them both.

And as I’m reading back through this I can see and feel the judgment I had toward the mother. Like I said I know nothing about her life – not that it would excuse hurting a child, but surely they both are deserving of peace. Maybe it is she who needs it most of all and yet in my judgment I’m sure I would have offered it to the child before the mother. Maybe if someone had offered her a little peace and understanding somewhere along the way she wouldn’t have been in the emotional state she was in to start with. I guess offering peace to all every moment may have an impact I can’t even imagine. Yet another reason to keep practicing. Clearly I’m still learning.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 12

Today began with a small act of both peace and love. The reminder to begin it that way came a year or two ago. I think it was summertime when a praying mantis came to visit. It sat on the screen door of my house for a couple days. It stayed long enough for me to start to think that maybe it had some wisdom it wanted to share. I decided to sit in meditation near it and listen to see what it had to say. It turned out it had a lot to say.

Here is what the praying mantis shared as I sat quietly:
Prayer. Be in a constant state of prayerfulness. Be always with an open heart, and words are not necessary for prayer. Prayer is a state of being more than a combination of words spoken. It is the flow of love from the heart returning to its Source. Be always praying, not with words but with deeds, with actions, always moving from the stillness of love within. Then you are moving in prayerfulness. Pray unto love. Pray without ceasing. Be prayer, be communion with Spirit. Let each look, each word, each action be your prayer. Prayer is a joyful state of being, for prayer celebrates the connection within to the Source. Be a living prayer.

Besides these words, what I carried with me from that day was the idea of beginning each day prayerfully, in full awareness of Spirit. I try to remember that each day before I get out of bed. I don’t always succeed. Today I remembered and it was a beautiful way to begin the day, centering myself in the silence of peace and love.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pledge of Peace and Love ~ Day 11

Today I took an opportunity to share an idea I thought might help contribute to peace. I was listening to NPR while I was working. The Kojo Nnamdi show was on WAMU. They were talking with author and professor, Peter T. Coleman, about Cracking Intractable Conflicts.

I posted a note on their website with an idea that had occurred to me while working in documentary filmmaking years ago. I wondered what would happen if you recorded people during peace negotiations (forget for a minute the obvious confidentiality concerns) and then each night after the negotiations they had to watch footage of themselves during the negotiations. I wondered what impact it would have on people to be able to see and hear themselves from another perspective, perhaps through the eyes and ears of someone else at the table. They might be able to see where they appear angry or appear to be inflexible through their body language, when that was not truly what they meant to communicate. They might be able to hear where their voice sounded aggressive or hostile. It might just help them all to see things a little differently. What if that could help in the peace process?

I didn’t know if they would actually address the question, but they did. The guest seemed to like the idea and thought that it was creative. Whether anyone will actually try the idea or not isn’t important as much as the intention to contribute to a more peaceful world by sharing the idea. That intention was felt by however many listeners there were at that moment for Kojo’s show and felt by those who listen to it online at some future date. You just never know who your ripples of peace might touch or if they will touch anyone at all, but it’s always worth making a little splash. Maybe then our combined intentions will create a great wave of Peace.