You can also now follow a Peace Train on Tumblr:

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Serenity Now: 5 Steps to Inner Peace

The following article is from World Vision Canada:

It’s a sad comment that stress is a more likely companion than tranquility in our lives.
But it’s no wonder really. The news depresses and distresses. We hectically rush from place to place. And even our down time seems to be filled with activities, especially if we have kids.
Inner peace doesn’t just happen of course. But we can make it a little more likely in our lives and in our hearts. Try a few of these steps to find some serenity now.

1. Seek some community
Facebook is great, but it can’t give you a hug. An inherent part of being human is longing for community and authentic relationships. We want to laugh, cry and share with people who love us.
Decide to share in a community. Join a welcoming church, mosque or whatever kind of worship community your faith creates. Find out if there is a book club at your local library or start one yourself. Remember, this is not a search for more things to do, but a quest to find a place to be truly you.
2. Give yourself a break
If you are a parent, most of your running around is probably trucking kids from activity to activity. Yet think back to how you were raised. You were probably not involved in many classes, groups and competitions. Yet somehow you grew up to be a contributing member of society.
Decide to take a family sabbatical from extra-curricular activities for one season. See how it feels to not rush. Then carefully decide which activities to re-establish.
3. Plan deliberate fun
Will a game night usher in inner peace? Probably not on its own. But nurturing a sense of fun and sharing times with friends does good things for the soul and for our health.
Haul out some of those old board games and plan a game night. Ask your guests to bring their favourites. And don’t hesitate to include the kids. You’ll wonder why you don’t do it more often.
4. Live generously
It’s hard to have inner peace when we live in outer clutter and chaos. Most of us own way too much stuff.
Use the relief of a Canadian springtime to de-clutter your home. Hold a yard sale and donate the proceeds to a charity, or, save yourself the yard sale and ask a charity to come and get your excess. As you give things away, both material and financial, you will probably find those things don’t own you as much. You will feel free and probably more at peace.
5. Think about what is right in the world
The World Bank reports that poverty has decreased in some parts of the developing world. Women’s rights are being recognized in more places. Most people are taking steps to reduce, reuse and recycle.
This is good news! The progress is uneven in all these areas, of course, but there are some significant areas of growth and reasons to celebrate.
And if you sponsor a child through World Vision, you’ll have good news at your fingertips in the form of the annual reports and letters you receive from your sponsored child. The world is improving, one child at a time.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Ending Global Poverty Begins with Women!

The always lovely Sabina from Barefoot in the Orchard has joined the Peace Train! So much war and unrest stems from the conditions of poverty and injustice. Here is what she wrote about an organization that is making a difference in this world!

One third of the world's population lives in poverty; most are women. About 2.3 billion people live on $1 a day. Imagine trying to live on just $1 each day. In Nicaragua that one dollar might buy 14 oz of rice, one egg, a little bit of cream, a tortilla, and maybe one other tiny item, and that may need to feed a family of six. If one of the children gets sick that entire dollar would have gone to antibiotics and that same family would not eat that day.
One organization that's making a difference is -Women Thrive Worldwide.

Women Thrive develops, shapes, and advocates for policies that foster economic opportunity for women living in poverty. They focus on making U.S. international assistance and trade programs prioritize women. They bring together a diverse coalition of over 50 organizations and 40,000 individuals united in the belief that women are the key to ending global poverty, and empowering them is not only right, it’s also the most effective long-term solution to world poverty.

Why Women? Worldwide, women are at the greatest risk of being poor. Research and experience have also shown that women in poor countries are more likely to use their income for food, health care and education for their children, helping to lift entire communities out of poverty. However, women face unequal social and economic barriers that prevent them from earning a living and supporting their families. Women Thrive works to ensure that U.S. policy is addressing these barriers and supporting women’s efforts to find their own path out of poverty.
P.S. Don't forget to check out the "Shop The Cause" section of their website. You may be able to find a unique gift or item you can purchase and help out that way!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Peace One Day

September 21st is World Peace Day. Although the day was officially started by the UN in 1981, it was kind of one of those days that no one really knows about, let alone celebrates or attempts to strive for peace. But in 1999 one man name Jeremy Gilley began on a mission to one day make peace day truly a day of peace: the first ever annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence with a fixed calendar date. It still hasn't happened yet, but the peace day movement has grown exponentially due to his efforts. When I watched his film, The Day After Peace, I was completely inspired... it was amazing to see what one person could do.

In order to honor world peace day and in order to promote peace both in our individual lives and a global community, I decided to start this blog, A Peace Train. My hope is that it will help anyone who reads it (including myselft) to think about peace more and to inspire us to create more just and peaceful communities and world. I hope that you hop on board!

I commit to peace on 21 September. What will you do to make peace on 21 September? Take Action now