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Voice for Peace

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Member since: Mon Jul 16, 2007, 10:08 AM
Number of posts: 11,234

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I like to think of them as It, like an enormous Black Creep,

like the Dementors of whatchamacallit.
this darkness that has seized the minds and hearts of people,
casting a fog over the land ...
everyone in a fog.

& out of the fog emerges ta-da..!

the little Creeps of Darkness, the tea parties, the gun fiends,
the haters and cheaters, all the little liars.. who coincidentally
feed on darkness and ignorance, and can not tolerate light.

When the sun comes up, as it does, and as it is right now,
starting to come up over the horizon, Fear begins losing its
hold as people awaken and the fog starts lifting. The dark
little monsters everywhere are illuminated, and soon people
are laughing at them, not running from them, not giving
them money or time, not believing them.

In the darkness a pile of laundry appears to be a powerful
and dire-consequence-creating monster. When the sun
is up, it's just dirty laundry, easy enough to clean up.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Wed Jan 30, 2013, 05:57 PM (0 replies)

my maternal grandmother and mother both were full of woe.

Some say the attitudes & experiences of the maternal
grandmother are passed to the grandchild directly.
The egg of the grandchild is formed within her
grandmotherly womb, when she is pregnant with a

My mother lived dreamed and breathed thoughts
of death. She expected to die before she was 30.
I was born when she was 29 but apparently I tried
to abort myself early on; immersed in a womb
of death, what was the point of being born?
Everything died, dies, and is always dying.

When I was a child, my mother took me to visit
graveyards. I recall this as being a frequent outing,
but maybe it happened only once. I remember her
pointing out the graves of little children.. oh look,
she would say, she was only five years old...

Meanwhile I was already six, and living on borrowed
time. I said that same prayer every night.
I fully expected to die before I waked. Every day
was .. huh.. now what? Planning for tomorrow was
never a sensible option.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Sat Jan 19, 2013, 04:05 PM (0 replies)

Book Review - about going beyond self-improvement

How to Go Beyond Self-Improvement
by Mitch Ditkoff

In 2012, more than five million books were published worldwide.

Of these, a sizable percentage were of the "self-help" variety, a growing genre that promises to help people improve the quality of their lives -- to become happier, healthier, smarter, kinder, thinner, cooler, richer, less depressed, selfish, anxious and, generally speaking, better in countless ways that society uses to define what it means to be a successful human being.

At the core of the self-help book world is a fundamental assumption around which all of the writing revolves -- that there is a self to improve -- an essence at the core of a human being that is flawed and needs some tweaking.

And while this assumption certainly attracts a lot of book buyers, there is another kind of book, beyond self-improvement, that addresses an even more basic theme -- not improving the self, but knowing the self -- what sage Greek philosophers were referring to, centuries ago, when they distilled the purpose of life down to two simple words: know thyself.

This is the province of the newly published The Greatest Truth of All: You Are Alive! (21 excerpted talks of Prem Rawat) -- a 198-page book that awakens, inspires, and demystifies the so-called "search for self."

more at link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mitch-ditkoff/prem-rawat-book_b_2443702.html?utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false#sb=3802500,b=facebook

(caveat: I've been listening to Prem Rawat for more than
40 years and am probably biased -- but I love what he
has to say, & it never gets old for me.)
Posted by Voice for Peace | Thu Jan 10, 2013, 09:36 PM (0 replies)

Juan Cole - Top Ten Reasons Chuck Hagel Should be Secretary of Defense

Top Ten Reasons Chuck Hagel Should be Secretary of Defense

Posted on 01/07/2013 by Juan

I doubt Chuck Hagel, the former Republican senator from Nebraska, and I would agree about almost anything with regard to domestic US politics. Unless his views have changed, we certainly would not agree on gay rights. ( He says, at least, that his views have in fact changed and has apologized for remarks in the 1990s, and I think he should get the benefit of the doubt here). But he isn’t being nominated for secretary of Housing and Urban Development. He is being nominated as Secretary of Defense. And on defense and foreign policy issues, Hagel’s views have much to recommend them. I testified in April, 2004, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on which Hagel served, about the then Mahdi Army uprising in Iraq. The chairman, Richard Lugar, and Hagel both struck me as informed and concerned about the situation. Others, like Sam Brownback, seemed almost robotic in throwing softballs to my fellow panelist, the neoconservative Richard Perle, who denied that there was any uprising. Hagel had voted for the Iraq War authorization, but raised questions even then about US ignorance of what it was getting into, and he later in the Bush years joined Democrats in voting to get out.

Here are some positive things about the Hagel nomination:

1. Chuck Hagel is a decorated war hero, having won two Purple Hearts as infantry squad leader in Vietnam. He knows what war is, unlike the usual gaggle of chickenhawks who have emerged to accuse him of not being warlike enough. The very notion of William Kristol in a uniform is enough to provoke mirth, but here is an influential man (why?) who never met a war he didn’t love. Hagel not only knows war but knows it from the point of view of the infantry and NCOs, not just the officer corps. Hagel is cautious about wars and what they can achieve, and has become more cautious over time, as his hands got burned by the Iraq resolution. This caution is admirable in a Secretary of Defense.

2. Hagel has been an advocate for veterans. He introduced legislation to limit deployments in Iraq, which failed. (Many Iraq vets served multiple 18-month tours, and many of their problems have to do with frequent, long deployments.) He was a principal co-sponsor of Sen. Jim Webb’s bill on GIs, which expanded educational opportunities for those who served after September 11 (the bill became law). Unlike many inside-the-Beltway hawks who use the troops for political purposes but cut veterans’ benefits when the war is over, Hagel cares.

3. Hagel has long opposed the use of sanctions instead of diplomacy in the Middle East, having argued on June 27, 2001 at a conference of the American Iranian Council that sanctions on Libya and Iran “isolate us” (Washington Times, March 29, 2002).

(much more at link)


Posted by Voice for Peace | Tue Jan 8, 2013, 07:15 AM (3 replies)

Short and Sweet: Rep. Joaquin Castro makes Prem Rawat an honorary Mayor of San Antonio TX

Prem Rawat has been a big inspiration to me for a long long time. I also think those Castro brothers have a bright future!


Prem Rawat was honored with the title of honorary Mayor of San Antonio, Texas.

The proclamation was read by Rep. Joaquin Castro, Member of the State House
of Representatives from the 125th District:

"Thank you for the work you've done with the inmates
at the Dominguez State Jail and for your continued
work in helping all of humanity.

I'm going to read in part, the state resolution that
was prepared."

On behalf of The State of Texas:

WHEREAS through its peace education program,
the foundation has enhanced rehabilitation and
correctional facilities around the world, including the
Dominguez State Jail in San Antonio.

The interactive non-sectarian PEP (Peace Education
Program) workshop helps individuals develop positive
life-skills and discover inner resources such as Self-worth
and dignity.

AND WHEREAS for more than four decades,
Prem Rawat has devoted himself to uplifting others with
his message of peace. And his endeavors have contributed
greatly to the well being of countless people.

that Prem Rawat
be honored for his philanthropic achievements and that
he be extended sincere best wishes for continued success
with his important work.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Tue Dec 25, 2012, 04:31 PM (1 replies)

My point of view is that human beings need peace. Each one, including you and me.

I have no first-person expertise on the subject of
Israel and Palestine I can only speculate about what
might work, what would not work.

I'm not a fan of assigning blame to either side. I think both
sides' stances are leading nowhere.

I'm sad to see so many innocents in the way of all the
insanity, both here, as this morning, and there.

If there could be one inclusive democratic nation that
would be fine with me. If they want to make it two
countries, or ten countries, I don't care. What I care
about most is that people start looking at themselves,
recognizing where the real solutions are, and where
peace can be found.

If we make no effort to understand the other person, &
other points of view, wars and misunderstandings will
continue to flourish.

Something I recognize is that most people have a
unique set of circumstances, programming from early
life, cultural biases, etc. and it is very hard for most of
us to see beyond those things. If we learn from childhood
that Arabs are evil, or that Jews are evil, it's hard
to shake those early life beliefs and fears, they are
close to our bones. But they're not us. These beliefs
and fears are not who we really are.

The scene from Borat is a ridiculous but excellent
analogy, if you saw that film -- when he is taken
in lovingly and with great kindness by the old Jewish
couple. But because of what he was taught as a child,
all he can see is dangerous monsters.

Probably this phenomenon, more than anything,
accounts for these conflicts. Instead of recognizing
what we all have in common, we focus on the
differences, our fears, and our inherited prejudices
-- and create conflicts that don't have to exist.

I recognize that the OP is about an extreme analogy.
It's obvious to me that it's not the same situation.

But all things considered I understand why people
make the analogy. I understand why people defend
both sides with equal passion, and why people may
feel offended.

Yet I benefit more from examining & understanding
why things offend me -- why something is personally
offensive to me, even if it's happening on the other
side of the world, not affecting my life directly --
than from proving someone else is offensive.

Thanks for your openness to the possibility that
you were misunderstanding my post. The only card
I have in the game is this one:
It is not the world that needs peace, it is people.
That's where it begins and ends.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Fri Dec 14, 2012, 06:32 PM (0 replies)

there's a powerful documentary film


I understand why people see similarities.
Nothing is black and white.

guard tower:

Israel and the Occupied Territories: The fence/wall violates human rights
Amnesty International 2/19/2004
Amnesty International believes that the construction by Israel of the fence/wall inside the Occupied Territories violates international law and is contributing to grave human rights violations.

According to the Israeli authorities the fence/wall is "a defensive measure, designed to block the passage of terrorists, weapons and explosives into the State of Israel...."

However, most of the fence/wall is not being constructed on the Green Line between Israel and the West Bank. Close to 90% of the route of the fence/wall is on Palestinian land inside the West Bank, encircling Palestinian towns and villages and cutting off communities and families from each other, separating farmers from their land and Palestinians from their places of work and education and health care facilities and other essential services.

....The fence/wall encompasses more than 50 Israeli civilian settlements in the Occupied Territories, in which the majority of Israeli settlers live and which are illegal under international law. The security exceptions in international humanitarian law cannot be invoked to justify measures that benefit unlawful civilian Israeli settlements at the expense of the occupied Palestinian population.

Posted by Voice for Peace | Fri Dec 14, 2012, 01:37 AM (3 replies)

there should be a place for people like her. I think it will happen in future years

because I think the compassionate consciousness of
humanity is on the rise. But it will take time.

Institutions have helped people, but also have become dead
end prisons for too many, with poor nutrition and inadequate care,
abuse in many cases.

It comes down to individuals, especially those who choose
care-giving professions, to raise the bar on treatment of others,
quality of life, understanding the whole person and treating
the whole person, including the broken child inside.

A woman like that with the right care could get well.

Institutions could be wonderful places, if well designed and
maintained, So many of us, left entirely to ourselves -- even with
the best intentions to make changes, usually default to what is
most familiar. A place that provides healthy structure is
probably essential for most people like that. A chance to heal,
a chance to find out who she is without the drugs, the
desperation, and the aloneness.

It's gonna take a lot of love to change the way things are,
to make things work out right.

We have the love. We have the wisdom, we have the
solutions, and the generosity of spirit. It's here, it's already
inside every one of us. We must tap into it, every single one of us.
That's the only way.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Thu Dec 13, 2012, 01:41 PM (0 replies)

“It looks like a bunch of old white men running women out of Washington.” (Mika B)


Top African American Lawmaker Says GOP Attacks On Susan Rice Use Racial ‘Code Words’

Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) this morning defended U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, calling out Republican use of “code words” in attacking Rice’s professional capabilities.

Appearing on CNN, Clyburn, the number three Democrat in the House of Representatives and the highest-ranking African-American in Congress, added his voice to a growing number of lawmakers concerned with the appearance of the Republican Party potentially blocking a minority nominee to the President’s cabinet so soon after a bruising electoral loss among minorities.
Clyburn isn’t alone in his assessment of the issues the Republican Party is running up again in their pursuit of Rice. The hosts of MSNBC’s Morning Joe also were incredulous that the GOP would be looking for this fight, against a highly regarded woman of color, so quickly. Host Joe Scarborough, a Republican himself, was struck by how his party seemed unwilling to moderate its tone, with his co-host Mika Brzezinski saying, “It looks like a bunch of old white men running women out of Washington.”

(more at link)
Posted by Voice for Peace | Wed Nov 21, 2012, 12:56 PM (0 replies)

"Festival of Lights" is something we've celebrated. All the winter traditions are about

light in time of darkness, and hope.

I clean away dust, so all surfaces in the house are reflective,
and light lights and candles through the dark weeks.

It's not about being an atheist which I'm not, or religious,
which I'm not -- it's about the beauty of light, how it takes
darkness away.
Posted by Voice for Peace | Tue Nov 20, 2012, 12:01 PM (3 replies)
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