Saturday, April 28, 2012

12th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates

 12th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates in Chicago.
21 Nobel Peace Prize winners gathered together for the first time ever on USA soil and my son Keyten and I had the honor of being present to witness the pivotal event.  With attendees from around the globe including former President Mikhail Gorbachev, Jimmy Carter 39th  President of the US, President Bill Clinton, his Holiness the Dalai Lama, Kerry & Ethel Kennedy, actor Sean Penn just to name a few the 3 day event elevated the awareness and necessity for not only communication but most importantly action. 

We learnt that all problems are related weather it is global warming, poverty, hunger, clean water, etc. they all need to be addressed as one issue as they are all equally important and have a symbiotic relationship. There was great discussion on the ways that business can work together for the good of all and still make a profit. For example the Garmeen Bank founded by Peace Prize winner Professor Muhammand Yunus, had 7.5 million burrowers, 97% of whom were Women; with 2,554 branches, loaning 7 billion USD to the poor with nearly 100% repayment rate since its inception.  Yunus, looked at these people and saw their human value, where traditional banks would only look at credit scores. 

We all have the instruments that we need to in order to create change; we just need to implement them. Any conflict must be addressed with understanding and conversation. Not only is Peace possible it is a necessity for the continuation of our global village.  

Each year, the Nobel Peace Laureates honor a distinguished figure in the entertainment and arts community for their efforts in defending human rights and promoting world peace and solidarity; this year the Peace Summit Award was presented to Actor Sean Penn. The prestigious award was referred to as "the Oscar for your humanitarian commitment" by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Udo Janz. "It’s difficult to properly respond to this while avoiding clich√©,” Penn said. “But quite deliberately, I'm thrilled to receive this tribute and to represent it to the youth of Haiti, the strong women of Haiti, and of the world. Tomorrow is a new day where cynicism is for cowards, and men of virtue and agency will be true heroes to their sons. Many in my generation know cowardice well, but not the youth, and not the women. And NEVER the Haitians. This is an extraordinary honor in an extraordinary moment on Earth. I'm very grateful."

Currently there are 20 thousand Nuclear war heads around the world. Since 1970 there have been 5 times (that we know about) where the countries of the USA and Russia have gone into protocol to launch their weapons, because they believed they were each under attack. 5 times they had their finger on the button of potential devastation and global famine.  Nuclear war is always a possibility as long as they (Nukes) are still in existence.   

It costs $7billion a year to take care of the Nukes that the US already has; $1.7trillion is spent on war per year by the US alone. Imagine what else could be done with that money. From a business stand point, it makes no since to continue spending money just to maintain a “mindset” that the man with the most weapons wins. No one would win if nuclear weapons of any size were to be launched. Why do we have something that everyone says is never going to be used?

Peace Prize winner Dr. Shirin Ebadi, spoke about Iran’s possession of such weapons and took it further to include building a Nuclear power plant and how ludicrous it is. Since Iran is located on an earthquake fault, they have nowhere to bury the plant waste.  If their government was truly creating energy for the people they it would be solar since they live in one of the world’s biggest deserts.
 “Speak up, speak out for freedom & rights,” was the event theme. Seek knowledge by not just taking for granted the information being handed to us. Each and every one of the Noble Laureates started out just like you and me, they took their own natural talents and chose to serve others by bringing light to the darkness and to give a voice to people not able to speak for their own human rights, ordinary people who lead by example and were awarded for their tireless dedication to others. Laureates relieve suffering and save lives while others stand back and let it happen. 

“PEACE will bring not only an END to WAR, but to POVERTY and HUNGER too. Peace in our hearts will find us naturally taking care of our ENVIROMENT, NATURE, and all our planet's creatures along with the inhabitants we share this gorgeous earth with.” Lynne Hazelden, PlantingSeeds & The Kind Foundation

We were invited to attend this summit because Lynne Hazelden and I are co-creators of an organization called “Peace In OUR Lifetime.” We collaborate with many organizations including ‘Peace Jam,’  Peace One Day,’ and ‘Imagine Peace,’ in order to bring about the awareness that Peace is consciously created every day. In our world we have more people who chose to live in Peace then chose not to. If you are one of these people we invite you to add your voice to Peace by downloading your free peace certificate. (No email address necessary.)
Prospects for peace are better today than they have ever been. We live in a time when communication through technology is possible to help create conversations between us and people who we have been told are our enemy. We can now see for ourselves directly that people all around the world have many more similarities then we have differences. We can start working together rather than racing against each other to create jobs, which provide a living wage for families around the globe.  These are basic human rights, to work and to live with dignity. 

Kerry Kennedy said, “Moral courage means to standing up not just to the government but to your friends and family for what you believe to be right.”  With all of the problems we are facing globally it is easy to stand back and ask, but what can I really do? The answer is simple; anything you do will make a difference. “We must become the change we want to see.” Mahatma Gandhi 

Not only do I believe that Peace is possible, I see it every day. It is where we put our focus that helps expand our understanding, think about everything that you did today, did it result in anyone dying? Did it help or make someone’s life easier? What difference did your actions make? Over 6.8billion other people also chose actions that did not put anyone else’s life at risk. Globally the overwhelming majority of people consciously chose to create peaceful movements. Only a handful of people did anything violent, or harmful, but because of what is brought to our attention, our focus is on the violence rather than the peace that is created daily. What we focus on expands, where is your Focus?

Marcia Johnson 

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