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A creative blog by Lisa Schultz on The Whole 9

Lisa Schultz has spent a lifetime observing the human parade. Now at the helm of The Whole 9 and The Peace Project, she reports in on her findings and asks that you join in.

Love and compassion are necessitites.

Love and compassion are necessities. Without them, humanity cannot survive.
~~Dalai Llama

Michele D’Acosta and I were having a conversation a few days ago about the change that’s needed in this world and the movements that are working towards that. She articulated so perfectly that the success of any movement is it’s ability to inspire compassion — in a sense to bring people together around our shared humanity — the things that we share in common with those that we have mistakenly been led to believe that we are so different from.

Today we see most power manifesting because of it’s ability to divide people and control them, but the greatest power of all, the power of love, is contingent on nothing more than recognizing ourselves in others and then allowing our hearts to open and join together.

I spend a lot of time thinking about the situation in Israel and Palestine. And I just can’t shake the overwhelming belief that a huge disservice has been done — not just to the Palestinians, but to the Jews who have been robbed of the ability to understand and know the people that were natives to the land before the creation of Israel, and live and love in peace with them. I think about the incredible slyness of those that only seek power and because of this, have worked to convince these two groups of people who once lived peacefully together, to hate each other, to fight each other in a seemingly never-ending battle of lies and dominance, disrespect and dismissal while most people around the world shake their head and lament “It will always be that way.” In spite of this, time and again, a crack appears, the light shines through and love blooms. It is evident in the tireless work of individuals like Eliyahu McLean and Mahomed Akbar Khan.

During the siege in Gaza, Dan Reed wrote something that I’ve been thinking about ever since. He wrote that the Palestinians would need to use love and unity to change the situation. I scoffed at the time, but I lie awake at night sometimes trying to manifest an idea that is big enough, strong enough and powerful enough to overcome the decades of hate that has been sown and harvested by those who seek power to the detriment of nearly every person in that area. I am not sure I have the exact idea just yet, but I have a spark that will hopefully grow into a flame that can create a light bright enough to drive away some of the darkness.

And while this idea is nurtured, I have art and the hope for a better day that, despite the attempts to dim them, is alight in the eyes of these children in Gaza who remind me so much of my children and every child I have met throughout this cruel, crazy, beautiful world.

Photos by Basel El Maqosui

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