Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tibits of The Peace Abbey November Newsletter 2011

The Peace Abbey NewsletterNovember, 2011


Friends of The Peace Abbey Sponsor Events

News from Occupy Boston

Free Yoga classes at the Peace Abbey!

Here is What One Person Can Do

Dot Walsh and Andrea Leblanc at Closing of The Global Alliance Conference in South Africa

Joan Baez to Receive the Courage of Conscience Award
Joan Baez will receive the Peace Abbey Courage of Conscience Award on November 6 in a small private ceremony following a concert with Kris Kristofferson at Symphony Hall in Boston.

Baez is an American folk singer, song writer, and activist. She has been working for peace, human rights, and environmental justice during her career for over 50 years.

Her lyrics deal with social issues, and she has been an influential voice of causes for justice through her 30+ albums.

She began her activist involvement from a young age. She marched and demonstrated with Martin Luther King, participated in the civil-rights movement, and now works with many domestic and international organizations.

A few causes she supports are environmental rights, opposing the death penalty, protesting the Iraq war and all wars, and supporting gay and lesbian rights.

Baez has been an extraordinary leader and visionary for peace and social justice.

In the 1960s, she began a school named the Institute for the Study of Nonviolence which has since transformed into the Resource Center for Nonviolence.

In addition, she worked with the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors and founded her own human rights group Humanitas International.

She embodies many of the values held in solidarity by the Peace Abbey and we are grateful for all that she has given to create a culture of peace in our world.

The Courage of Conscience Award has been given to recipients both internationally known such as Mother Teresa, Jackson Browne and the Dalai Lama as well as grass roots individuals who continue to live their lives with courage and compassion.


SouthCoast Today: By any definition, kindness matters

By Susan Pawlak-seaman
Live and Learn
October 28, 2011 12:00 AM

Maybe because I spend a lot of time waiting in traffic, bumper stickers catch my eye. Such as the one I saw last weekend when I was heading to the Dartmouth Mall:

Remember to be kind

it said in large letters. Then, in smaller print, it noted "Peace Abbey in Sherborn, Mass."

Since I wasn't familiar with the Abbey, I did a quick Google search and learned that "Peace Abbey is dedicated to creating innovative models for society that empower individuals on the paths of nonviolence, peacemaking, and cruelty-free living."

To that end, a variety of programs are offered.

While the Abbey's overall mission is noble, what impressed me most, however, was the simple message on the bumper sticker.

Remember to be kind

Sad to say, it's a reminder that's very much needed. Because so many people in so many ways have forgotten how to be kind.

Just what is kind? If you check a dictionary, you'll get all sorts of answers. You'll see words like "generous" or "warm-hearted." Or "sympathetic" or "understanding" or "charitable." Or even "humane" as in being kind to animals.

There are other words that might not immediately come to mind. A couple of online dictionaries equate "kind" with "tolerant."

Whatever you regard as synonyms for - or at least close sentiments to - kind, we seem to be lacking in many of them.

Mere mention of the vast wealth of Wall Street makes me think of greed, not generosity. I certainly don't see much sympathy coming from that direction - not when banks continue to foreclose on the American Dream and companies with record profits fail to share a smidgen of them with their workers.

Or hire any new ones to ease the latter's burden.

On the political front, far as I can tell there's no such thing as kindness. Or tolerance. Or respect. They're all missing in action. And I'm not just talking about Reds vs. Blues, Republicans vs. Democrats. There's a huge amount of nastiness and name-calling going on among people of the same party.

I'm sure some will hasten to point out that we witnessed a similar level of political posturing the last time around when the Democrats had a bitter fight for the nomination.
But this time it strikes me as worse. Maybe because society is a more mean-spirited place than it was four years ago. Just about everyone is strapped and stressed - and for a lot of people, just getting through the day requires so much energy that there's little left over for basic human decency.

Hard as it is, though, we have to hang on to what we've got. I hate to think what will happen if we don't.
As I looked at that bumper sticker last weekend, I was reminded of something else: the lyrics to my favorite Jewel song, "Hands," especially the line that goes "In the end, only kindness matters."

No matter how we define it.

Email Susan:

Grandmother Love

STONEWALK 1999-2007

As the chill of fall is in the air we are still filling the guesthouse with travelers from far and wide and keeping our hopes up as we do our work. Thank you for your continued support for our mission of promoting the many facets of peacemaking.

Blessings, Dot

We are still searching for a like-minded organization to purchase the Peace Abbey property and continue to offer retreat space and programs that promote nonviolence and social justice. Such an organization may choose to transform the Abbey into a peace education center or something similar, as there are many different avenues to spread the message of peace.

Please feel free to contact us for more information. If you are interested, or know of an individual or organization who might be, please contact Dot Walsh at (617) 335-5408 or Lewis Randa at (508) 259-8508 or call the Peace Abbey office at (508) 655-2143.

Please share our request and help keep the Peace Abbey a sacred place of kindness and welcome.

With gratitude,

The Peace Abbey

  • Friends of The Peace Abbey Sponsor Events
  • Sunday, November 6th, 2011 9am-3pm

    Our friends at Roots and Wings Yoga Center in Natick will offer a day of Yoga Classes and an Artisan Market. All class proceeds will go to the Peace Abbey! Classes run from 9AM to 3PM. The market runs from 11AM to 3PM. Join us for Yoga, art, massage, information sharing and some good old down home mingling! The fun starts at 9 am.

    9:00 - 10:30 am Breathwork with Mare Tomaski, suggested donation $25-35

    10:45 -11:45 am Feel Your Bliss with Svaroopa Yoga with Melissa Fountain and Annette Bongiorno, suggested donation $15-20

    11:00 - 3:00 pm Artisan Sale, all artisans will donate the proceeds of one item to the Peace Abbey.

    12:00 - 12:20 pm Spirit Groove with Lisa Lewton

    12:30 - 1:00 pm Get to know the Peace Abbey with Director Lewis Randa

    1:15 - 1:40 pm Family Yoga (all ages) with Elizabeth Goranson, suggested donation per family $15-30

    1:50 - 2:20 pm Nia with Donna McGurk, suggested donation $5-10

    2:30-3:00 pm Yoga for the Peace Abbey followed by Closing Ceremony

    For more info call Mare at (508) 788-0906.

    Roots and Wings
    317 North Main Street
    Natick, MA 01760-1115
    (508) 315-8088

  • News from Occupy Boston
  • gandhi

    While the growing Occupy movement targets the 1 Percent, we want to introduce you to the elite among the gang of the superrich: the war profiteers.

    War industry CEOs make tens of millions of dollars a year, putting them in the top 0.01 percent of income earners in the U.S.

    * Northrop Grumman CEO Wes Bush made $22.84 million last year.

    * Lockheed Martin CEO Robert Stevens made $21.89 million.

    * Boeing CEO James McNerney: $19.4 million.

    These guys use their corporations' massive lobbying dollars to keep their job-killing gravy train rolling.

    Last year, their companies spent a whopping $46 million on lobbying, corrupting our politics and ensuring that their bank accounts continue to fatten at our expense.

    These executives are some of the main reasons why we're wasting so much on war instead of rebuilding our own nation here at home.

    We have been deeply inspired by the incredible activism of the Occupy movement, so we created this new video to help highlight a piece of their messaging that's essential to getting our country back on track:

    We have to end wars for profit.

    Derrick Crowe, Robert Greenwald
    and the Brave New Foundation team

  • Free Yoga classes at the Peace Abbey!
  • Come to the Peace Abbey on Tuesdays at 10:30AM for a class in yoga and meditation. All levels are welcome!

    Led by our wonderful student intern, Rachel Bairstow, these classes will focus on connection to the body and breath, deep relaxation, and self-reflection.

    Rachel is trained in a variety of yoga styles and has been practicing yoga and mediation in various forms for the last eight years. She welcomes practitioners of all levels to her classes, and feels strongly that everyone - no matter your shape, size, color or creed - can do yoga, and can enjoy its enormous benefits.

    No experience with yoga or meditation is expected or required; only a willingness to breathe deeply and relax.

    Please bring your own mat if you have one; the Abbey has a limited number of mats available.

  • Here is What One Person Can Do
  • Please read this extraordinary story of 22 year old Molly Katchpole's struggle against big banks.

    Molly created a petition against Bank of America's $5 debit card fee and used the website to raise awareness.

    Over 300,000 people supported Molly's cause, and not only is Bank of America removing its $5 debit card fee, but big banks like Chase and Wells Fargo are publicly canceling their plans to do likewise.

    Diane Sawyer announced on ABC Nightly News Friday night "Score one for a customer rebellion!"

    Here's what other media are saying about Molly's petition against big bank fees:

    * ABC: "Banks Back Down from Fees"

    * CBS: "Bank of America Backs Down After Consumer Backlash"

    * Mother Jones: "Banks Surrender on Debit Card Fees"

    * Daily Mail: "Victory for customers as big banks back down from debit card fees"

    * Time Magazine: "Banks Back Off Unpopular Debit Card Fees"

    * NY Daily News: "After outcry, Wells Fargo, Chase, Bank of America back off on debit card fees

    * Dan Rather reported that has become a "nerve-center for social justice the world over."

  • Dot Walsh and Andrea Leblanc at Closing of The Global Alliance Conference in South Africa
  • NEW Items at The Peace Abbey Gift Shop
  • We are in the process of re-ordering new items for the gift shop, including some beautiful newly-designed mugs arriving any day now!

    We also have books with copies of the long version of The Prayers for Peace, DVDs with the prayers in English and Spanish and copies of the quotes from the Pacifist Memorial along with jewelry items.

    Please come and visit!

  • Tours, Weddings, Conferences
  • A wonderful way to be introduced to the memorials on the grounds and the buildings at The Peace Abbey is to schedule a group tour. We have retreats for individuals and groups. Schools and colleges, church groups, community organizations and other groups are welcomed. For wedding and conference information, please call the office: (508) 655- 2143
    $100 Donation for Tours

  • Opportunities Exist to Underwrite the Courage of Conscience Award and the Gandhi Exhibit
  • We are interested in having a family foundation, a business organization or individuals underwrite the Courage of Conscience Awards. Please call the office if you have suggestions. Thank You!

  • Do your friends know about the Peace Abbey?
  • We would like to invite people who are your friends and have never visited the Peace Abbey to arrange a date and time for you to bring them over.

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