Global Peace Park Project
IIPT Global Peace Parks Project
“The future belongs to those who give the next generation reasons to hope” Pierre Teilhard DeChardin
The Global Peace Parks Project builds on the success of IIPT’s Peace Parks Across Canada Project commemorating Canada’s 125th birthday as a nation in 1992.
IIPT Global Peace Parks are formed throughout the world to dedicate a piece of land to our commitment to “Building a Culture of Peace.” Our goal is to circle the earth with over 2,010 IIPT Peace Parks by 2010. Many of IIPT Peace Parks have erected a Peace Pole with the message ‘May Peace Prevail on Earth’ in different languages.
The Objectives of the IIPT Global Peace Parks are:
RATIONALE FOR PEACE PARKS
For centuries the natural space between trees has been considered sacrosanct. Ancient cultures beginning with the Greeks and the Vikings believed that such a space was “Bosco Sacro” – the Sacred Space.
Other first nations dwelt on the spirituality that existed in the metaphor of the tree.
A Tree’s roots grasp the earth and are nurtured by it, while its branches reach out to the endless possibilities of the heavens.
With this as one of the many views in mind, the Peace Park Project was initiated with the “Peace Parks Across Canada” project commemorating Canada’s 125th birthday as a nation.
The project has grown to now include over 450 Peace Parks dotting the globe.
• To nurture the growth of peace and understanding at home and throughout the world.
• To enhance awareness of a community’s commitment to peace and a healthy environment.
• To create a common ground for members of the community to come together in celebration of their nation’s people, land, and heritage, and the common future all humankind.
• A place of reflection on our connectedness to one another as a Global Family and to the earth of which we are all a part. Concept
• IIPT Peace Parks to be dedicated in cities, towns, villages and rural areas, even hotel and resort parks, beaches, in all countries and territories throughout the world.
• Dedicated parks are usually existing parks – dedicated as Peace Parks.
• A “Peace Grove” or “Bosco Sacro” of usually 12 trees as an integral part of each park. This can be a number of trees that is particularly symbolic to the city, town or village.
• The species of tree or trees to be used is at the discretion of the local Peace Park Organizing Committee.
• The Peace Park should include a plaque designating the park as an IIPT Peace Park – date of the dedication – and appropriate quotation relating to peace, or the IIPT Credo of the Peaceful Traveller.
• Workshops should be conducted representatives of the diverse civic organizations and population segments to reflect on the concept of peace – and what peace means to the community. How this concept of Peace might be reflected in the dedication of the Peace Park and thereafter with activities in the Park.
• The dedication ceremony should take place on a day that has significance such as September 21, the UN International Day of Peace.
REFLECTIONS ON PEACE These reflections on peace are a summary of reflections from some 17 workshops held across Canada as part of the “Peace parks Across Canada ProjecT 1992.”
Peace begins with each of us, as individuals. Getting in touch with the whole person within – mind, body, and spirit. Achieving an understanding of ourselves, seeking and finding our own inner peace and sharing it in relationships with others. Searching within to find right thinking, and right attitudes as a basis for right conduct and action in support of the right cause. “Peace from inner strength”
“Personal commitment to the achievement of peace in our own lives” “Raising awareness to the level of responsible actions” Inner peace can be learned by simply observing the joy of children; their awareness of the simple things; their creativity and limitless sense of discovery of themselves, and the world around them; and their great capacity to enjoy life as reflected in their spontaneous smiles and laughter.
We should all seek to find the “discovery factor” of the child within us, and nurture it. “Respect for self to have respect for others” “What we do now will affect our children and grandchildren” From peace within us, reaching out to others in a spirit of understanding, trust, and acceptance to achieve harmony within our families and neighbourhoods, and particularly among our youth.
The arts in all forms are invaluable as a universal language in creating bridges of understanding and appreciation. Peace with others extends to our colleagues at work and within our respective professions, trades, and occupations. It is creating partnerships to work together towards common goals. “Love transcends all things” “Collective peace through individual peace” To achieve peace within ourselves and with others, we must also be at peace with nature. In this respect, we can learn from the Iroquois Great Law of Peace, which states in part: “God created man – to take care of everything else that God created.” We must re-connect with our roots, our communities, and natural environment and where possible bring nature back into our urban settings.
“Harmony with each other and the land” “Peace is holistic, physical and ecological” “Peace is a recognition of the inter-connectedness of all things.” “Peace is the way we live, how we use the land and integrate the natural world into our cities” The vision of peace includes harmony among jurisdictions – local/ provincial/ federal and a unified community working together in a continued leadership role in collaboration with other nations, towards international understanding, world peace, and a healthy environment.
It is a recognition and celebration of the natural beauty and abundance we have and the opportunities before us. It is recognizing the importance of all parts of the global society – even small places in the global struggle for peace – Sharing and appreciating the diverse cultural heritage within the human family – The Global Village. Global Peace requires that we deal with the obstacles to peace – with famine, drought, and illiteracy; that we bridge the gap with the less fortunate. It requires peaceful means to resolve conflict and appropriate structures and strategies to build a better world for all. “Have to provide food, water and shelter for all before we can achieve peace” “We ARE our brother’s keeper” Global peace requires a transition from military economies to peace economies; meeting human needs – particularly in developing countries and restoring health to the environment and our life support systems – land, air and water. “Turning swords into ploughshares” Peace is the recognition of our spiritual as well as our material capacities – a spirituality that embraces the whole of creation.