“A Spotlight on Peace In the Village”

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The red carpet was rolled out on Saturday evening, September 18th, when a spotlight was caste on peace at Peace Village Learning and Retreat Center in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York.  Many of us know that spotlight values is a youth initiative for youth and young adults.  However, on this artful and creative evening that honored the International Day of Peace, the aim was to reignite and/or keep lit the spirit of youth and peace for an audience whose ages ranged from 10 years to someone at the ripe age of 93. 

The audience was invited into a cafe style atmosphere with soft, warm lighting, relaxed music, delicious chai, nutritious herbal teas, and home-made chocolate cake with a berrie drizzle — mmmmmm, good!  In this friendly and welcoming space everyone was awakened to the Spotlight values initiative and its explore, express, and exchange process.    They were moved into exploring peace through a contemporary dance titled “From Dark Into Light”.  Much like its name, the dance was the story that spiritual leaders throughout history have journeyed in the name of bringing peace on earth, the obstacles triumphed, and the realization for the practice of peaceful methods to bring peace on earth.  The audience was prompted to explore their own stories of peace which was then synthesized into the highly poetic form of expression called haiku. Click here to read some haiku moments shared by the participants http://spotlightvalues.org/video-library/expressive-writings-2/ .  Some of the more inspired audience members exchanged their haiku moments on peace with the rest of us — oh, it was a scene filled with emotion, silence, beauty, lightness, drama, as well as humor. We also explored and expressed peaceful values like courage and love through dance, which then ended in a peace dance bringing us all quietly into our seats for the final moment of inner reflection and realization.  Aaaahhh, we all reached the inner sanctuary of peace where the true spotlight was caste!     — by Colleen

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