Yesterday, in honor of International Day of Peace, (which is actually tomorrow) our local Creative Club hosted a FUNdraiser around the theme of "PEACE". It was a fantastic day of art making for families and friends, a bake sale, a really awesome silent art auction and an informative talk by Dr.Tobey Crockett.
Families and individuals were invited to create a "Peace Pie Mandala" in a collage media. The collages centering around the individuals interpretation of peace. The slices were then assembled on displays around the room. Watch my short video above for a better idea of the layout.
Children craft tables were also available for creating a Pinwheel for Peace or a peace fan. There was a huge banner with the letters P-E-A-C-E in open block letters and shapes that children and parents colored designs and added text that exemplified the concept shared at the event.
There was the most delectable variety of treats to purchase at the bake sale area. Not being a baker, I was in heaven and on a serious sugar rush. I had to buy some extra goodies to bring home so I could rave about it to family members without the guilt.
The silent art auction was very popular. The "buy it now" concept works as well for a silent auction as it does on popular websites. Who knew? Mary did! Great ideas happen when several creative minds get together.
Dr Tobey Crockett was the cherry on top of a really FUN day. I was so moved and impressed by the way that Dr. Crockett made the talk more a dialog format. I had such an epiphany when people began to share answers to the questions she posed, "What does peace mean to you?" and "What do you think are the biggest blocks for achieving it?" I thought, everyone would answer the most obvious, 1.)World peace. 2.) Everyone to stop fighting. It blew me away as people started to talk about personal inner peace, family relationships and isolation in community as the blocks to peace. I realized how personal peace was needed before the larger scale could ever be addressed. Dr. Crockett summarized it beautifully when she pointed out that it starts there. I feel really blessed to have gotten the opportunity to be part of that exchange. It was a WOW moment.
I want to encourage teachers, parents and other leaders out there to have a similar dialog with your groups. Ask, "What does peace mean to you?" and see where it takes you. I am willing to guess that it will be as enlightening for others as it was for me to hear how varied the perspectives are. I know it is often hard to venture into such emotionally charged subjects. As teachers, parents and leaders we tend to want to wrap things up into a nice package with a final answer tied with a pretty ribbon on top. The truth is, it is our job to make people think and to formulate their own answers.
Finally, I really want to challenge you to use art as a bridge for thought about this subject. These are the teachable moments that we look for in life. Don't let this one slip by. Peace DOES NOT HAVE TO BE POLITICAL OR RELIGIOUS! You are teaching a concept that should be introduced and nurtured. Be a facilitator for thinking.