When in the course of
September 11th, a 911 call, a human
event, occurred, I, like every being in the world was in shock and
pain. Throughout the ensuing
days I found myself mesmerized with watching the events on television. Along with family and friends we held prayer groups, lit
candles and made donations. For
me, it did not seem enough.
I decided to create the
Are All One Family Button”, which I call the Human Flag.
In the midst of the chaos of that day, we forgot race, color, and
creed. Our Human Family was
hurting and all that was important, all that mattered was to help them.
It was our brothers, sisters, parents, children, friends, and
associates, creating a human chain of a helping hand.
My feelings that
“We are all One Family” were the impetus that
created the button. I knew
that separation is caused only through fear and an 'eye for an eye' was
not the answer to dispel that fear.
The buttons were sold with a sticker on the back, and those who
bought them wrote a message of understanding, hope, peace, and love on it
for me to take to Ground Zero. I
visited New York the last week in November, 2001, to hand out the buttons
to the volunteer station at St. Paul’s Church, Firemen, Policemen, and
people who were visiting that site. The
enormity of it was quite humbling and was held in reverence by all.
Tears were shed, hugs were given and we were all ONE FAMILY.
I know that as I looked into the eyes and faces of the volunteers
behind the fences, tired, worn and yet not defeated, doing their humongous
jobs, knowing that somehow they were making a difference, filled me with
Sacredness of Humanity that day will forever more be the view I look at
everyone with. The quiet
humbleness of the hundreds of people milling about, catching our eyes,
sharing a smile, a tear, a sigh or a kind word was indwelled in my memory
forever. I brought home with
me the knowing the strength we as humans have, how in the face of all that
occurred, we still kept on. I left there with the certainty of hope for us.
Thinking that was the end of
the button story, I returned home only to receive a call and an email from
Sr. Grace who ran the volunteer program at St. Paul’s Church, thanking
me for the pins and would I send more, she stated she wore hers every day.
So through the generosity of friends who volunteered to purchase
more pins I was able to send off 1,000 more to Sr. Grace.
The pins have their own life now, as I have been receiving emails
from firemen, policeman, and volunteers, etc., expressing their gratitude for
the pins sharing with me that everyone at Ground Zero was wearing one of
With that thought in mind, I decided to then send some pins to The Pentagon Volunteers.
My friend who accompanied me to New York, LiAnne Selzer, had a
relative who was stationed at The Pentagon and so she emailed him and he
sent me phone numbers. Within
two calls I contacted the gentleman in charge of the renovation site. I shared the story with him and asked if it would be possible
for me to send some pins for the volunteers, and he was truly eager and
said yes immediately. So on
May 2nd they were presented to The Pentagon.
That is also a story*(see
Peace Project Buttons). I
wanted the first batch to be presented in person at The Pentagon but was
unable at this time to get there. My
daughter Gail was visiting and suggested since she lived 2 hours outside
of DC that she would take them. So
Gail, her husband Scott and their 8 yr old son Chandler were the ones
delivering them in person. Chandler
was very thrilled at his secret mission from his grandmother.
He had his mother go to an Army/Navy store to purchase some
fatigues for him to wear. When
my daughter inquired about The Protocol for taking pictures she was told
it was ok and that they may even take a picture of my grandson and put it
on the Pentagon’s website. Chandler’s
school is so excited about the pins and Gail is ordering more to share
When in the course of human events…
The story continues...
A friend and I gave out 110
pins to a charter school in Phoenix.
The pins were given to children who achieved the DOVE program,
which stands for, “Developing Our Virtues Everyday.”
Also, a group of International Women bought 50 buttons to
send to an orphanage in Jerusalem and others are going to Uganda and parts
In reverential humbleness I
realized that it only takes one thought followed through to completion to
truly make change. The pins
aren’t about me Shirley; they are an entity on their own.
They are about holding peace, love and compassion for all the
peoples of the world, in whatever they face, in their pain, loss,
confusion, and fear. It is
saying to a sister or brother, We Care.
We only need to open ourselves to understanding the absolute
connection of ourselves to the universal oneness.
Could this ONENESS CONNECTION, possibly be what God, Creator, Great
Spirit, Allah in whatever name you pray to and worship, could it be what Buddha, Ghandi, Christ,
knew and wanted to share with us? Is
Humanity The Holy Grail? In
our search for divinity, Are we, each sacred being IT?
Did they, the Avatars, know that as a collective we could do more
to further this belief? For
me I say YES! for I truly know that at the source, at our roots, in our
beginnings, “We Are All One Family.”
In the course of our lives
we are presented with many experiences both personally and collectively.
Oftentimes we allow ourselves to fall victim to these events and
feel immobilized, unable to recover and give up our faith and hope in what
one might call “the system.” I
ask, “Who is the system? Are
we not the voters; are we not the citizens of this country?
Is it not up to each one of us to make a difference in whatever way
we can? Is it easier for us
to blame the system, our boss, our spouse, our parents, our children, and
etc., for every wrong we perceive? Do
we forget to count our blessings each day?
Do we forget to believe in something greater than us?
Before presenting this in the
article, I needed to ask myself these questions, I needed to dig deep
within to truly understand the concept of Oneness.
I feel for
myself, for that is all I can speak for, as a part of this magnificent
universe we reside in, that standing up for what I believe, to make a
difference in however small or large way I am called upon or I am able to,
is a way to be accountable and responsible for myself and my beliefs.
Won’t you join me in a One Family Gathering, wherever you are and
do one thing that sponsors peace.
One Family Silence
The Drum of War
Zero Lianne Selzer African
Within Prayer for Peace