• 120th International Peace Meditation “Knowing who You are, and what You are to do”

    “Knowing who You are, and what You are to do”

    December 3, 2006 — This Meditation is about You. And it’s about Me. Before we each leave this planet, of most importance is that You and I know who We really are, and what it is We are to do.

    ‘You are uniquely designed for giving, because You are the gift.’ This is a phrase we have used for many years in the Institute. It is a powerful phrase if you ponder the meaning of each word.

    ‘You’ are uniquely designed. ‘You’ are designed for giving. ‘You’ are the gift. At the holiday season, when merchants use push-pull marketing to tell you that you are only adequate if you buy their products, and then lure you with sales and rebates, it is important to think about what it is you truly want to give. If you give a gift, it is only a reflection of the true gift of Yourself, or Self, as is often used in spiritual language. ‘You’, your ‘Self’, is the true gift. The rest is only a symbol of the true gift.

    “Holiday giving” has given in to “holiday hype”. But the true meaning of the holidays has not changed. Whatever holiday you celebrate, let the peace, love, and joy of the holidays be the real meaning. Have patience with those who feel inadequate if they don’t push to the front of the line. They are responding to marketing; you needn’t.

    Experience joy at the little gifts-the real gifts. The child’s picture. The child’s contribution of setting the table, or decorating it. The child’s stories, real or imagined. These are gifts of the holidays.

    The smiles from those whose lives are torn apart with illness or poverty. The hugs from those who, themselves, are in great emotional pain. The music of all-whether trained or untrained. These lift our hearts and remind us of what is important.

    The day after the holiday is often the time for clean up. Many will get caught-up in returning gifts for something preferred. Others will immediately take down the decorations and move on. But, this isn’t necessary. The stores will still honor the returns days after the holiday. The decorations won’t be used for another year, and they can still be enjoyed. The spirit of love at the holiday can permeate the workplace and lift morale. We don’t have to follow the prescription we have been given by those who stand to benefit. We don’t have to go into debt, pretend to have more than we do by giving more than we can afford, and then return to work promising ourselves that next year will be different: Next year we won’t purchase more than we can afford only to resent the additional financial stress that inevitably follows.

    We can return to the real meaning of the holidays. We can know who We are, and We can realize that We are the gift. We can have patience. We can spread joy. We can give to those who don’t have, and share time with those we love. We can teach our children the real meaning of the holidays. We can be pioneers, refusing to be manipulated by the media: made to feel inadequate, to purchase more than we can afford, and then to lament the debt we have accrued. We can know who We are, do what We need to do, and recognize that We are the gift.

    You are a gift. Everyone who reads the Meditation is a gift. Everyone who gives feedback on a Meditation is a gift. Everyone who meditates is a gift. Those who give financial support to the Institute are a gift. Those who share their expertise with the Institute are a gift. Those who provide friendly and caring service are a gift. Those who smile even when they don’t know us are a gift.

    You are a gift. In reality, You ARE the gift. And it’s what We each do with our life, our Gift, that is important. Gift giving is really giving of Self: Time. Joy. Love. Caring. Sharing. Opening to new ideas. Listening to a child. At some time, each of us is lonely, sick, depressed, or afraid. As long as we are able, we have an opportunity to give.

    The gift is only the symbol. The gift of Self is the true gift. Thank you for sharing yourself in many ways. If the Meditations have meaning for you, please share them with others. Print them out for those without computers, and forward them to those who have. Let the gift of Self be your true gift for the Holidays. Remember always that We are Love in the world.

    Peace. Love. Joy. May the gifts of the Holidays be yours.

    With love,

    Sue Kidd Shipe, Ph.D.
    Executive Director

    My gift to each of you is simply a poem I wrote in 1992.
    May it stir your soul, and warm your heart, this holiday season.


    The children are gathering
    All ready to sing
    With hearts full of wonder
    Love’s message to bring
    And we, far too busy,
    As the Holiday draws near
    The sweet sound of singing
    Seem never to hear.

    The children are crying-
    Their only alarm,
    For warning the grown world
    Of impending harm
    But, tied up in working,
    Too tired to give heed,
    We continue the treadmill
    Ignoring their need.

    The children are laughing
    It must be a game
    Frivolous, indecent,
    And bringing ’bout shame
    We must not allow it-
    It surely is bad
    Let’s stop all this laughing
    Before the world’s mad.
    The children are dying
    Won’t we ever take heed?
    They’re starving for love
    Till they’re starting to bleed
    The world’s changed around us
    We weren’t prepared
    The children now need us
    As never compared.

    The children, still singing
    In spite of their pain.
    Defenseless against
    The world’s horrid gain
    They’re singing of love
    Of hope and joy
    Promised to every
    Girl and boy,

    For still they believe
    In what they’ve been told
    That the world’s a safe place
    For hearts that still hold
    To families, schools,
    Institutions of worth
    That to them were promised
    By virtue of birth.

    They’re looking to us
    And trusting they’ll find
    Safety, happiness,
    Peace of mind
    Can we do less
    Than give them our best
    Endeavor to help them
    Meet bravely life’s test?

    The children are singing-
    Pure, innocent joy
    Welling up in each color
    Of girl, of boy
    Singing of love
    That truly they’ll find
    For we’ll never stop working
    For their peace of mind.

    Sue Kidd Shipe, copyright 1992
    Please join us in prayer/meditation during the 24 hours of Sunday, December 3, and again the first Sunday of every month. The International Institute for Human Empowerment, Inc. is completing 10 years of continuous International Peace Meditations. Forward our Meditation to all in your address book; make copies for your religious and spiritual brochures and bulletins.

    The International Peace Meditation invites people of all faiths to participate. The International Institute For Human Empowerment, Inc., a 501C3 charity registered in New York State, is not a member of any religion in order that it may serve all.

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    International Institute For Human Empowerment, Inc.
    P.O. Box 3920
    Albany, New York 12203 USA
    Please make checks or money orders out to:
    International Institute For Human Empowerment, Inc.

    The International Institute For Human Empowerment, Inc. is a
    501 ( C )( 3 ) tax-exempt organization recognized by the United States Government. Your contribution within the USA is tax-exempt.
    Sue Kidd Shipe, Executive Director
    International Institute For Human Empowerment, Inc.
    P. O. Box 3920
    Albany, New York  12203   USA
    (518) 393-9491

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