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Notice During the Covid-19 Outbreak
 
In solidarity, we at the Interfaith Peace Project stand together in these times of heart break and upset. Some of you may have lost friends or family members. Some of you may have lost your job and your income; some may be working overtime to help with the crisis. Some of you may be home and alone and some may be trying to figure out a new way to live. Please let us know how we can help. If you would like a phone appointment with any of us, give us a call.You may call or email Tom at:
 
Tom Bonacci
[email protected]
925-787- 9279
________________
 
September 21, 2020
Dear Friends,
 
In honor and celebration of The International Day of Peace, Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P., is sharing a daily reflection from various sources from September 11 to September 21, 2020. Today is Day 11, the last day of those reflections. If you missed some of the reflections, you can find them on our website (under Blogs), interfaithpeaceproject.org. We hope you have enjoyed the reflections. Please send us your comments and/or reflections to [email protected]
 
“The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. Two decades later, in 2001, the General Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and cease-fire. The United Nations invites all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities during the Day, and to otherwise commemorate the Day through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.” 
 
For more information on the day click here or go to:  https://www.un.org/en/observances/international-day-peace

 

The Interfaith Peace Project 
 
© arrowsmith2  stock.adobe.com
 
PEACE IS EVERY STEP
By Rev. Andrea Goodman

Eleven Days of Peace: Day 11
Celebrating The International Day of Peace

 
I have been thinking about peace lately because The International Day of Peace is approaching. Also, I am the Director of The Interfaith Peace Project’s San Francisco Peace Center. But I have not felt very peaceful lately. Not surprising. Covid-19 protocols (one type of mask). People dying of the virus, losing jobs, homes, and health insurance. Dangerous air quality from the fires in Northern California (another type of mask). Racism. Murders of black and brown people. Economic downturn. People suffering everywhere from policies that favor the 1%. I will stop there!
 
And then I once again saw, really saw, a magnet on the inside of my front door from someone Unknown.
 
              peace.
              it does not mean to be in a place
              where there is no noise, trouble
              or hard work. it means to be in
              the midst of those things and still
              be calm in your heart.
 
This message reminds me of the ocean. It can be very turbulent on the surface, but down below, it can be serene. It can be like when someone asks me how I am despite my broken heartedness. I can sometimes say, “I’m okay.” The part of me that is okay is the part of me that I cultivate with self-care, prayer and meditation, reading, pulling weeds in my garden, being grateful.
 
A book that has been in my library is Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life by Thich Nhat Hanh. In the forward of this gem, the Dalai Lama writes, “Peace must first be developed within an individual. And I believe that love, compassion, and altruism are the fundamental basis for peace. Once these qualities are developed within an individual, they are then able to create an atmosphere of peace and harmony. This atmosphere can be expanded and extended from the individual to the family, from the family to the community, and eventually to the whole world.”

 

Suggestions for Cultivating Peace
  • Create a gratitude practice. Dedicate a journal or pad of paper and write three things you are grateful for each day.
  • Pray the Peace Pole Prayer: May Peace Prevail on Earth. Think of all the living beings on our Earth…walking, flying, swimming, being. Send them all your Peace.
  • When you brush your teeth, be aware of and bless everyone and everything that was involved in bringing you the water, the toothbrush, the toothpaste. (Remember electricity if you have an electric toothbrush and the people who laid the pipes too!)
Let’s be People of Peace together. I would love to hear how you are cultivating Peace. I can be reached at 415-517-1646 (phone or text) or [email protected].
 
At some point in the future, I welcome you to the San Francisco Peace Center. In the meantime, know that I am sending you blessings of peace wherever you are.
 
Andrea is Co-Founder and President of the Board of The Interfaith Peace Project
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CONCLUSION OF OUR ELEVEN DAYS OF PEACE
 
As our Eleven Days of Preparation conclude with our observance of The International Day of Peace, we pledge anew to commit ourselves to practicing peace in every moment of our life. We do so one day at a time hoping to be the peace for others we seek for ourselves. Together we can bless all that is in the sacred moment of now and the holy place of here.  
 
MAY ALL BEINGS HAVE HAPPINESS AND THE CAUSES OF HAPPINESS;
MAY ALL BE FREE FROM SORROW AND THE CAUSES OF SORROW;
MAY ALL NEVER BE SEPARATED FROM THE SACRED HAPPINESS
WHICH IS SORROWLESS;
MAY ALL LIVE IN EQUANIMITY,
WITHOUT TOO MUCH ATTACHMENT AND TOO MUCH AVERSION,
AND LIVE BELIEVING IN THE EQUALITY OF ALL THAT LIVES.
 
 
Samples of Our Practice
for September 21, 2020
 
The Interfaith Peace Project Centers and gathering places located in San Francisco, CA, Morgan Hill, CA, Cloverdale, CA, Mt Shasta, CA, Antioch, CA, Brentwood, CA, Concord, CA, and various places throughout the Nation will shelter at home observing Peace in Every step. Here are some samples of our practice for September 21, 2020:
 
9:00 am: light a candle and pray for peace in the hearts of all Healthcare workers and all essential workers.  
Noon: play a peace song on my harp acknowledging all beings on the planet and that we may live in harmony. 
4:00 pm: eat supper and imagine Donald Trump having a peaceful dinner with his family. 
Evening: take time to write in a journal and create an image of peace using oil pastels. 
 
8:00 am:  Light a candle for peace
10:30 am:  Singing bowl on the deck
Noon:  Peace meditation
1:00 pm:  Zoom with friends about what peace means to us all.
3:00 pm:  Visit the Peace Pole in the garden and pray that peace may prevail on earth for all beings
6:00 pm:  Prepare a meal acknowledging all who have contributed to this food:  earth, sun, rain, farmer, etc.
9:00 pm:  Sing a song with peace in our hearts.
10:00 pm:  Wash face with gratitude for water, the pipes, etc.  Go to bed grateful for a clean quiet room with a roof.
 
Offer incense for the World while walking in the Morning.
Call and comfort those in need.
Study and eat consciously with gratitude.
Light candles before the sacred Images and Scriptures house in the Center.
7:00 pm Open the front door to bless those caring for others.
Spend a quiet night fasting in honor of all suffering beings.
 
Ring the Bells in our Church Towers calling all to practice Peace.
Live simply for the day hoping to live simply everyday.
I will be my true self. 
 
MAY PEACE PREVAIL ON EARTH!