On November 4th, in 50 countries around the world, we will be flying globes for world peace. Today, in light of the growing discord around the "pastor" in Florida who planned to burn the Qu'ran on September 11, and the backlash of anger that has been touched off in response, it is important to speak out for peace, not fan the flames of more hatred, division and discord.
I remember September 11, 2001. I was ill, in bed, when the phone rang and my daughter Lisa said, "Are you watching the news? They're flying planes into buildings in the states." I turned it on and watched in horror and disbelief. And with a horrible, sinking feeling............. because I knew when George Bush was elected there would be a war, and now I knew for sure that it would happen.
Over those first horrible days, when emotions ran so high, I listened to the administration's rhetoric and grappled with a mixture of feelings. It was terrible what had happened, what some misguided and extremist human beings had done to so many thousands of innocent other human beings, and their families. But I also knew there were events preceding this attack that were being ignored in the endless news discussions.
This week has seen a rise in rhetoric, in anger, in further estrangement. Acts of aggression cannot help but provoke such a reaction. They are not the way to peace.
Words fail me, at the moment. But I happened upon this prayer, tonight, riffling through my Earth Prayers book. I shall offer it here, to accompany my globe, in hopes no books get burned, no bad things happen, flared tempers will subside, and some manner of appeasement is managed, somehow, some way.
Here we are, God - a planet at prayer. Attune our spirits that we may hear your
harmonies and bow before your creative power
that we may face our violent discords and join with your Energy to make
heard in every heart your hymn of peace.
Here we are, God-a militarized planet. Transform our fears that we may
transform our war fields into wheatfields, arms into handshakes, missiles
into messengers of peace.
Here we are, God-a polluted planet. Purify our vision that we may perceive
ways to purify our beloved lands, cleanse our precious waters,
de-smog our life-giving air.
Here we are, God-an exploited planet. Heal our heart, that we may
respect our resources, hold priceless our people, and provide for
our starving children an abundance of daily bread.
Joan Metzner, from Earth Prayers
From my tired, weary, but still-hopeful heart, blessings and peace to all who long for peace - world peace, peace in every land, in every heart, on every hillside, under every tree, beside every garden, in every trench. May peace fall over the war zones of the world. May the only noise to be heard be the packing up of the bombs and guns, and the silent retreat of the stealthy, as they dismember the Improvised Explosive Devices.
May there never be another day like September 11, 2001, anywhere in the world.