Oklahoma City: An example of Peace on Earth by Andrea Hylen
(This was originally published in Beloved World- Voices of Peace Newsletter Sept 2008)
July 7, 2008 – A journal entry
Words seem so inadequate on this day.
By spending the morning and the evening at the Oklahoma City Memorial, I feel that my life has been touched in a profound way. I sit here staring at the blank page feeling the stillness, not knowing how to capture this experience in words.
A field of empty chairs represents the lives lost on April 19, 1995. My heart felt like it was bursting open when I first entered the Memorial. Tears ran down by cheeks, as I opened to the emotion. I felt that my heart was bursting with love and gratitude. Love and gratitude? This took me by surprise. I found out later that the entrance we walked through was the Door of Hope. And that is what I felt.
Through the tragedy of loss, the powerful emotions of forgiveness, healing, hope and love have arisen here. Beginning with the people who responded with help immediately, to those who came from afar, to the words of love from children, this is an example of the hope and beauty that is arising on the planet.
The people of Oklahoma City have risen from the ashes and chosen peace. They are an example of peace on Earth as we each make conscious choices for inner peace.
An educator shared the peace that has been birthed here. Conflict resolution classes in schools; Cards and artwork from children, like the tile that reads, ”The world cares.” Sharing tools of peace with the children.
Every night when the sun goes down, the lights below each chair shine brighter and brighter. As the darkness spreads throughout the city, I see the moon at the highest point in the sky. There is stillness. The chairs that represent loss are transformed and emerge into brilliant candles of hope and light.
I see in this moment, it is in the greatest times of darkness that we become the brightest lights.