Peace People

"What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family." --Mother Teresa

"The Simple Path:
Silence is Prayer
Prayer is Faith
Faith is Love
Love is Service
The Fruit of Service is Peace." --Mother Teresa (And I would even go as far to circle it back around and say that within that peace is silence. But then, I'm NOT Mother Teresa!) 

About part way through the school year I had missed getting the kids to the bus stop on time and had to drive them to the upper campus where they could catch a shuttle bus to their school. As we were nearing the school Aidan announced that today was Peace People day. My inner-alarm started to stir as I had visions of hippies infiltrated their school....it's not that I am against peace mind you but I do have a problem with political views being crammed into the minds of young children, which is often what "peace" talk means. Teach children how to gain knowledge and think for themselves and then let them figure out their own political views. Just my two cents.

At any rate, my worries were cut short as we drove past a group of old people on the corner holding up peace signs. It was right out of the 60s; they probably were the same people actually as many of them seemingly haven't cut their hair since (or changed their signs) and gray it certainly all was. Their signs had peace signs and anti-war comments etc. Things most of us would agree with on a very ideological scale but most of us realize holding up signs isn't going to make it happen.

"Mommy, why are there peace people?" Lily asked as we were driving by.

"Well Lily, those people are out there because they believe in peace and they think that standing outside every Wednesday holding up peace signs is going to accomplish something but really, they are just filling their time."

"Why do they want peace? Doesn't peace mean quiet? Why do they want that?" she asked. (Let me point out that she probably really has no idea why anyone would want too much quiet! Apparently she isn't Mother Teresa either.)

"Peace can mean quiet but what they want is a different kind of peace. They want the world to stop fighting to solve conflict. Humans have a tendency to fight to solve problems and they want us to resolve problems in more peaceful ways, without war."

"Well, we can use math instead," Lily exclaimed eagerly. "Because math solves problems. In little Red Riding Hood, she uses math to figure out that that the wolf is not her grandmother...you know, in Elmo's World....and the three little pigs use math to solve their wolf problem too, and it's the SAME WOLF! Can you believe that?"

For a fleeting second there I had thought maybe the peace people had accomplished something.....you know, getting us to dialogue about peace....Alas, it's really hard to compete with Elmo!

"May today there be peace within. May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others. May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content with yourself just the way you are. Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us." (Even Elmo!) --Mother Teresa (with peanut gallery comments from yours truly....)

Have a lovely, peace-filled day!

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