There’s a beautiful collaboration threading its way through Flickr at the moment, created and curated by my always thoughtful and tremendously artistic friend GoodCross, on behalf of the White Canvas Gallery. It’s called the I Stand For Peace Challenge, and its aim is to “disown the mindless violence around us, and do something about it as artists”.
I have to be vulnerable for a moment and confess in honesty that when I first learned of this wonderful challenge, my heart just wasn’t in the right place to participate. I don’t mean from an ideological standpoint; I think the world of GC’s intentions, and I’m a passionate advocate for peace, equality, and freedom in all its myriad forms. But rather, in the days since my last post, SLife has been a riotous roller coaster of marvelous highs and melancholy lows. Everything from spontaneously spiriting around the course at Relay For Life whilst performing a choreographed pom-pom dance with two of my dear friends, tears of joyful laughter blurring my vision as we lag-looped our way through the connected regions … to finding myself once more in tears of a far more somber sort, deeply akin to those I wrote about several days ago.
But clouds, as they gracefully do, started to gently lift, and a bright parhelion began shining in my direction. Several of them, actually, in the form of nominations to participate in this challenge. And I realized that I was being indulgent and selfish in my sadness, and that’s so uncharacteristic of the beautifully collaborative nature of SL. One of Linden Lab’s original slogans was “Your World, Your Imagination”, and that always resonated so deeply with me, because the “your” in this case can be both singular and collective, and often times our community comes together in incredibly thoughtful, poignant ways. From supporting a virtual world designer who’s facing a health crisis, to fundraising for a tragedy like the Pulse Nightclub shooting, SL residents have always had a profound desire to support and inspire, to pay it forward and pledge solidarity for a worthwhile cause.
And because the universe works in brilliantly thoughtful ways, when I was contemplating what kind of picture to take, this song came on my SL playlist and its symbolism aligned perfectly with my thoughts in more ways than one. When it comes to peace, whether inward or as a greater hope, I always return to one of my touchstones, Joseph Campbell’s teaching: “follow your bliss”. I truly believe that if we all followed this simple but tremendously profound philosophy, peace would prosper because genuine bliss never creates divisions, strife, feelings of lack, or unworthiness. If we could all just express heartfelt love, appreciation, gratitude, and respect for each-other, we would do just as GoodCross yearns and all be united in every world and reality.
It’s a beautiful hope to hold onto; hope is so essential and a truly enlightened state of grace. So until that hope becomes a reality, I stand for peace. And it’s my dearest wish that you will too. ♡
“Cause I need something more than everything
A higher self deep within
And I know, we need a little heart hope
I know we’ve gotta outgrow, and feel a little heart hope
Cause there is something more than everything
So feel the love and let it in
Cause I know, we need a little heart hope …”
Maitreya Body – Lara v3.5
Genesis Lab Head & Skin – Melissa
Izzie’s Freckles – Body Freckles II (Maitreya, Belleza, Slink Appliers & System Layers)
Mandala Ears – Steking Ears Season 5
Damien Fate Eyelashes – FATELashes v2.0
Avi-Glam Eyes – Ardent Eyes (Sky v2) *
Eaters Coma Hair – Hair 49 (Light Mauve)
Destination & Inspiration