Give Peace a Year – Meeting seven

Upside down

Meeting number seven

With the aim of peace, everywhere, starting here, now, transforming violence in life, one word, thought or deed at a time.

And because

it’s not the slog that will get us there, it’s the joy

to balance things up there will also be examples of things that warmed our hearts
Starting where transformation is needed, examples from the group of peace lovers this week on Thursday 19th May


1.Peace at home, or the lack of it

And the effect on our ability or capacity to handle or witness the lack of peace in the world.

Wanting home to be a place of peace, respite and sanctuary.

It being way too busy for that, and having no idea what could be done to meet the needs of all concerned. With no possibilities, suggestions or requests  in mind with which to go forward, but not letting that lack mean stopping and giving up on the possibility of needs being met.

Starting with this article which beautifully describes some introverted needs and going ahead to talk about or get creative about possibilities for more respite.



Triodos Bank again.

Their annual meeting featured last time as a completely unexpected delight and now they’ve won Most Sustainable Bank of the Year.  It can be done.

The faith that there must be a way is not unfounded.

More heartwarming

Dumbo Feather, the magazine featuring extraordinary people, now has podcasts!

I’ve listened to two of them featuring

  •   Susan Carland, activist, muslim, mother

who deals with hate tweeters by donating money to charity for every troll who posts.

she transforms hate. what a woman!

and  another featuring

  • Brendan Murray, educator, rebel, legend

who runs a school for children inside a prison, with unconditional positive regard for all, where they shake hands with each pupil and thank them for attending each day and think it’s the best thing if pupils want to take books to read after school (not classifying that as theft as the prison sees it)



2.Why does that bother me?

There’s an elderly woman, a fellow trustee, who I will be working with regularly and whose behaviour gets to me.

She always starts with “I have a terrible headache” when we check in at the start of meetings, yet refuses any treatment or water or other help.

There are other things she says, about whether her contribution is welcome which I believe are meant to elicit sympathy, or to go easy on her, or to heap praise and appreciation on her, but none of which feels true.

I realise that part of why it bothers me is that it doesn’t feel authentic, and the lack of honesty doesn’t feel respectful to me, feels manipulative.

I want the atmosphere to be one of respect and don’t want to fall into bitching about her with others, which could very easily happen.

Suggestions for handling the things she says which I don’t feel are honest or authentic

  • compassion and empathy for myself first, along the lines of

“when she says that, oh my does that set me off…. I just don’t trust that it’s true and really so much want honesty and respect in the way we all work together”

on repeat until feel satisfied and the vibes I’m sending out aren’t so pointed and I’m a little more calm

once, or if, that stage is reached, comes the option of going on to see whether I’m ready for

  •  compassion towards her and to silently extend compassion – to imagine what she might be in need of, along the lines of

“when she says that I wonder if she’s actually scared that we don’t want her here or that she’s really wanting some appreciation for her efforts all this time”

again on repeat until it feels ok enough

and hoping that this compassion for her will also be helpful…maybe take some of the charge out of the atmosphere.




One of my granddaughters’ friends had been so happy about something they’d been working on together in class that she got up and did a little dance.

Another girl said ‘that was a silly thing to do’

Thinking that was a mean thing to say she’d replied

“That’s just her personality. When she’s happy she dances”



Next in person meeting

Thursday 2nd June, 7.30 – 9pm

The Salisbury Arms Hotel, Hertford

Dates for the rest of the year here
Guidelines for the group here
Email to let me know if you’re coming and I’ll make sure there’s a seat for you

Focus –

Words, the language we consume and adding the language we use to talk to others or ourselves.

Plus – now adding thoughts and deeds

Examples of violence in word, thought and deeds that we are surrounded by and consume which we would like to be otherwise.

If, there’s an extra need for empathy for ourselves as we begin to look at the violence of our own thoughts, have a read here for some guidance with that


– examples of violent language and/or thoughts and/or deeds
– the translation if you already know how you’d like it to be
– examples of the heartwarming, so as to remember that love and peace are there in the world

Bring the heartwarming in whatever balance is good for your heart.

Your feel fine balance might be one heartwarming example for ten violent examples,

you might need ten heartwarming ones for every one violent one, or in equal measure…

adjust according to your heart’s needs. I think that my heart has grown very heavy looking at the state of the world this past few years, I may need to bring many more heartwarming examples for some time to rebalance my nervous system and lift my heart again.


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