On Saturday 21st September 2013 it is International Day of Peace. Here in Aberystwyth there is going to be an event from 5-9pm which is open to everyone and will based around the theme for this year which is ‘education for peace’.
If you are not in Aberystwyth you could see if there is anything in your area, or make your own celebration/marking of the day, perhaps with a peace themed meditation, or chanting ‘shanti’ (‘peace’). In Buddhism as well as in Hinduism repeating shanti three times is generally interpreted as meaning peace in body, speech and mind.
Read more about shanti on the Wildmind website, listen to some different recordings of peace mantras e.g. this one from Deva Premal, or this one, or two different chants on the Give Peace a Chant website, or even Lennon & Yoko’s Give Peace a Chance song!
The first Peace Day was celebrated in September 1982 on the opening day of the United Nation’s General Assembly. In 2002 the UN General Assembly officially declared September 21st as the permanent annual date for the International Day of Peace.
I don’t know if this still holds true, but when I was at high school in the mid-late 1980s, one teacher during an assembly said that since the year ?, there had never been a single day without a war being fought somewhere in the world. Even some twenty-plus years later I find that a deeply depressing statistic.
Aberystwyth event timetable:
5 to 5.30 p.m. Introductions, exchange of ideas and refreshments
5.30 to 6 p.m. Peace Circle meditations, prayers and singing
6 to 7.30 p.m. Art presentations, music and personal sharing
7.30 to 8 p.m. Open Discussion on the way ahead for World Peace
8 to 9 p.m. Sharing a (vegetarian/vegan) sacred meal
At: Merched y Wawr, Vulcan Street, Aberystwyth, SY23 1JH