Peace on Earth…

By GrannyMumantoog, a Trail Mix Contributor

It’s Christmas time again for much of the world. For others it may be called something else but many of the sentiments, hopes and wishes are the same. It’s a season of reflection, sometimes reconciliation, looking back on the year gone by and thinking about what will happen in the year ahead.

This time of year people all over the world think about peace. World peace is the stuff of song and story but it never seems to be a reality. It’s often just an anecdote or a punchline like in the movie Miss Congeniality:

Everyone says I want peace, I’m praying for peace, I hope my children will live in a world of peace. But, what do we do about it? Is it even possible? What would that kind of peace really look like? Has it ever existed? One of the earliest quotes about peace is the one that Christians are most familiar with. There are actually 2 interpretations/translations of the quote. It comes from the gospel of Luke:

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace to men of good will.

The highlighted section is in many bibles translated as “good will towards men.” Most scholars believe that “peace to men of good will” is the correct translation of the original text. It makes more sense that a celestial being would use that phrase when addressing a group of frightened men. Letting them know that if they have good will in their hearts, they will find peace. The irony is that even when those words were spoken the world was not at peace. Many years and many wars later we’re still looking for those men of good will to raise their voices and be heard.

During the Civil War Henry Wadsworth Longfellow went from deep despair to finding a spark of good will within himself and gave us one of the most beautiful poems of the era many people know it as a song:

…It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
And in despair I bowed my head;
“There is no peace on earth,” I said;
“For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men.”

More recently we have applauded stories of a few young men of good will abstaining from battle for a brief day during WWI. If only the entire world had stopped the madness. But, alas, those men of good will were not in charge and the killing continued.

It is sadly expressed in this song: ‘Christmas 1915’

The problem with trying to acheive peace is that the world is still filled with frightened men and they never understood the “good will” part of the task given to them 2000 years ago. The angel was admonishing them that peace would not be achieved until the world was filled with men of good will. That those men must become the loudest voices or nothing will ever change. This, as many before, has been a trying year for the world. For many it is the first time since the 40s that Americans are fearing an attack on US soil. It has become clear to the world that there are no men of good will running things. The US government seems to be about money, power and isolationist rhetoric with very little evidence of good will in the hearts if its leaders.

As we see, much has been written, said and sung about peace on earth in 2000 years. We will keep praying for peace and celebrating that original story of the possibility of peace on earth. We will keep believing that men of good will can eventually prevail. Where are they right now? Perhaps they are our children and grandchildren who will be taught to love instead of learning to hate and fear their fellow man before it’s too late. Maybe the next generation will save us from ourselves if we teach them right. If we can get them off of social medial and off their cell phones long enough. The future will belong to them. Let’s hope they do a better job than their elders have done.

There are over 100 quotes about peace listed on this page from the greatest thinkers, leaders, writers and speakers of every era. Share these with the young ones you know.

Here is just one quote from a man of good will in the 21st century: “Peace does not mean an absence of conflicts; differences will always be there. Peace means solving these differences through peaceful means; through dialogue, education, knowledge; and through humane ways.” ~ Dalai Lama XIV

On final song from our era: This is my wish – Kevin Ross

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all, in whatever form you celebrate them!

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45 thoughts on “Peace on Earth…”

  1. a calendar note for today

    Hanukkah 2017

    begins Tuesday, December 12

    at sunset (today)

    ends Wednesday, December 20

    at nightfall

  2. and in keeping with that, from newsweek: How (and Why) to Make Latkes for Hanukkah

    Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is upon us, and if you have any Jewish friends, are Jewish yourself, or have seen the Rugrats Hanukkah special, you know what that means: latkes. Not just any potato pancake, the crispy potato fritters are an integral part of the holiday.

    Although there is no biblical command to eat fried foods, the tradition comes from the central miracle of Hanukkah. During a Jewish uprising that lasted from 167 to 160 BC against the Greeks, the rebel Maccabees took back the temple in Jerusalem. The menorah, the candelabra that religion required to always be burning, had barely enough oil for one night. In the miracle of Hanukkah, the oil lasted for eight nights.

    Potatoes weren’t around most places Jews lived until much later, but they were eventually given the fried-in-oil treatment and, along with jelly donuts, also known as sufganiyot, have become a staple of American Hanukkah celebrations.

    As Serious Eats writes, there are three main elements to every latke: potato, onion, and a binder to hold it all together. The basic idea is to grate the potato, mix with the onion and binder, and fry in oil, flipping halfway through until done.

    While Jewish liturgy does not contain a commandment for making latkes, most seasoned latkemancers will tell you the fundamental principle of latke-craft is thus: thou shalt not fry wet potatoes. In the frying process, wet latkes become mushy latkes, and those are not the potato pancakes anybody wants. While tastes may vary, the ideal for most people is a crispy latke, which can only be attained with dry potato shreds. Bon Appetit has a pretty good guide: they suggest gathering your shredded potatoes in a kitchen towel to squeeze out as much water as possible.

    […it goes on with recipe likes and links…]

    As PBS writes, latkes’ origins probably stem from the Book of Judith. This book tells the story of a Jewish woman (Judith) who saved her village from an invading army by charming the army’s general, feeding him wine and cheese until he fell asleep, then beheading him with his own sword.

    In short, there are many ways to peel a potato. Rules are helpful up to a point. And Judaism is a religion where questions are often just as—if not more—important than answers (exhibit Z: there is no unified English transliteration of Chanukah/Hanukkah/Channukah).

  3. Today should be very interesting.  Having lived for a few years in the deep, deep South, near the Alabama state line, I can make make guesses as how this will end tonight.  There is one major change from when I lived in Mississippi to today.  The automobile manufacturing plants.  Although industry was in the Birmingham and Montgomery areas from the Civil War on, the auto plants are a major change.  The introduction of European and Asian cultures to the region, remember the movies about this back a few decades, along with Detroit culture has had an impact.  Looking at the red/blue maps in the newspapers shows this.

    Will the state show it moved to 1999?  I think so.  Has it moved to 2017, hell no, just look at the republican senate candidate.  But, any shift away from 1840 to 1970 to 1999 to 2005, that is a major shift.

     

  4. wapo:
    ‘How is my daughter a pervert?’: Alabama dad’s plain-spoken rebuke of Roy Moore strikes a nerve
    Perhaps it was the man’s strong but plain-spoken rebuke outside a Roy Moore rally on the campaign’s final night, condemning the Republican candidate’s past comments lambasting homosexuality.

    Perhaps it was the admission of the man, a peanut farmer, that he too, had harbored some of the same anti-gay feelings.

    Perhaps it was his sign, a photograph of his daughter, a lesbian who, he said, had killed herself when she was 23.

    Whatever it was, the two-minute video of Nathan Mathis struck a nerve, traveling far and wide as a sort of emotional coda to a wrenching U.S. Senate race in Alabama that has captivated the country.

    […continues…]

    https://youtu.be/0BY_2doFSqI

  5. To hear my defense of Al Franken compared to a “chew toy” is hurtful and insulting.

    I demand an apology.

    lol

  6. Peace is that late afternoon time of the day when blue light envelops all. At least to me 🙂 Maybe it’s my Swedish Great-Grampa Ola’s dna reminding me of a heritage where you cursed the darkness for 6 months then complained about the light the other 6.

    Lovely piece on peace, dear Granny.

    Great HuffPo article, Mr Crawford on today’s election. The antebellum theme dead on. Question: Does the fact that I view such brethren through the lens of the war is over, the correct side won, fuel the knuckleheadedness of certain Southern regions not getting this & moving on? I consider the Civil War & its aftermath through a victor’s point of view with an “ancestral memory” of several uncles who died far too young & quite horribly. It takes a beat but then I realize the Confederate descendants do too. They lost a generation of such men. I get it on a human level, but intellectually I know the correct side won. After 150 years, have to wonder if they ever will. And if me referring to them as they just adds fuel to the fire.

     

  7. Don’t get your hopes up, but Trump just made the GOP war on women very very real and may have crossed into impeachment territory.

    Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office “begging” for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump. Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!

     

  8. Beautifully written Granny.  The prayer in Come From Away that brings together all the different religions and cultures is one that always touches me.

     

  9. GrannyM…  wonderful post!

    I don’t really care which candidate wins in Alabama today.  The fact that they might not go for Roy Moore based on his pedophilia…  but would have put this nutcase into the Senate otherwise…  says all I need to know.

    On a happy note…   Old Sea Hag’s oldest son and daughter in law had twins yesterday…  a boy and a girl.  Gonna be a really busy grandma now!

  10. he’s obviously comparing notes with his perv buddy Roy “never met them” …

    Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump
    Despite thousands of hours wasted and many millions of dollars spent, the Democrats have been unable to show any collusion with Russia – so now they are moving on to the false accusations and fabricated stories of women who I don’t know and/or have never met. FAKE NEWS!

  11. Hope that limb don’t break, Poobah.

    Sturge,  LOL.  I’m sure Craig is sorry if he offended your delicate sensibilities.

    I guess SF’s approach is that if you have one drum beat it – and if you beat it enough folks will hear it and think it’s music. As Mr. Knopfler put it – Bangin ‘ on the drums like a chimpanzee. (In his case, prolly an orangutan).  His suggestion about Gillibrand is offensive, but then, it is SF…Of course she sought donations from SF in 2008-9 during her first run for Senate – he was a fucking NYC Democrat who was a billionaire to hear him tell it.  Who else would she approach for a donation, the naked cowboy, Elmo, the Power Rangers?

    I think NIkki gonna be in hot water.

  12. “the Democrats have been unable to show any collusion with Russia”  Is that translated to “Mueller hasn’t brought charges implicating me”?  What’s this Democrats stuff?

  13. Pogo, it might just break. But my MO is wishful thinking on election days, evidence aside.

    I will put up a live vote-watching thread around 5 PM, but so that we don’t lose sight of Granny’s fine post I will create a spot on the sidebar for it.

  14. “and would do anything for them”

    trump re gillibrand just insinuated bad stuff ’bout her bigly with that one.

    that should really poke a hornet’s nest.

  15. craig & kgc, I sure hope you all are right in your prognostication.  I fear that it will boil down to whether the anti-abortionists will see this as their continuing crusade against “baby-killers” and will hold their nose as they vote for a hebephiliac.

    many in the black community are staunch anti-abortionists so turnout there may be a toss-up.

  16. Um, Happy Hanukkah to Roy Moore’s Jewish attorney???

    I understand why the Moores are telling voters that not all of their friends are white, just in case that might sway some voters.

    I understand the weird optics of a tween interviewing Moore…cuz if he can be in the same room with her & not try anything then that means he was banned from that mall for no reason & ~surely he never did anything wrong.~

    But I don’t get the attorney comment.  Wouldn’t that actually hurt him with some of his alt-righters?

    Here’s hoping the voters aren’t duped by this creep & Banananazi.

  17. Pogo

    You mention Knopfler and anything Trump in the same post and I head for You Tube.  Here’s a tribute to the White House pervert’s eating habits.

     

  18. I have to lower my expectations for Jones. I now think he’ll only win by less than 1%. I expect recounts and recount shenanigans.

    Alabamians have a choice of stereotype guises to wear in front of the entire world. They can choose to be the crass, crude, and corrupt southern sheriff who preys upon children by day, and burns crosses by night. They can choose to be the gentile, refined, chivalrous/lady-like Alabamians, who are kind and hospitable to everyone, beloved by the Hollywood story tellers of the ’20s – ’50s.

    What Alabamians must decide today is not the choice it should be, between to decent, well-meaning candidates. It is a contest in the hearts of Alabamians about who they intend to be, and how they hope to be perceived. Let us all hope that they choose the good and proper.

  19. There is a fair number of Jews around Dothan. They liked babybush, McCain, and rmoney, but I don’t think they can tolerate moore, but the town will still go for moore by a wide margin. Huntsville, Birmingham & suburbs, Montgomery, the “Black Belt,”and Mobile will go for Jones.

    If Jones wins, he will owe his victory to Senator Shelby. I mean, who could possibly have imagined that ???

  20. Jamie: Thanks for the Come From Away piece, it makes a perfect addition. What an incredible sound track/show that is.

    I’m definitely hoping for men of good will to vote & win the day in Alabama.

    Happy 1st day of Hanukkah.

  21. xr, I’m in the non-official demonym camp for Alabama – I always referred to us natives as Alabamans, and I really can’t recall anyone using the term Alabamian.  Nevertheless GPO suggests that Alabamian is the recommended choice.  What is the GPO thinking?  Everyone knows that no self respecting southerner will expend all that unnecessary effort and use the longer form of a word when there’s a shorter alternative, being lazy and all.

     

    And if Jones wins he owes a bit of a debt of gratitude to Sir Charles and to Condy Rice – both Repugs like Shelby.  Whodathunkit?

  22. “Everyone knows that no self respecting southerner will expend all that unnecessary effort and use the longer form of a word when there’s a shorter alternative, being lazy and all.”

    pogo, then why don’t they call themselves “bams”?

  23. Patd – I think an Alabama farmer is going to get a few invites to ride in the honor car from several Pride Parade organizers.  The man deserves a lot.  You can tell he has suffered from his early stance.  But it is not unusual.  It is not uncommon for parents to drive a young man who came out to them to a bad section of a city and dump him out, telling him to never return home.

    SFB is really going all out on his distract the world from Russia and sex assault.  He is falling deeper and deeper into a stinking slit trench.

  24. yep, he poked a hornet’s nest

    wapo: Trump attacks Gillibrand in tweet critics say is sexually suggestive and demeaning

    President Trump attacked Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) in a sexually suggestive tweet Tuesday morning that implied Gillibrand would do just about anything for money, prompting a swift and immediate backlash.

    [….]

    White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders disputed the characterization of Trump’s tweet as sexually suggestive, telling reporters that “there’s no way this is sexist at all” and later adding: “I think only if your mind is in the gutter would you have read it that way.”

    “He’s used that same terminology many times in reference to men,” Sanders added, arguing that Trump was motivated by his long-standing concern about the corrupting influence of money in politics.

    The president ignored a reporter’s question about the tweet after he signed a defense authorization bill shortly after noon.

    The backlash and criticism was near instantaneous, with Gillibrand replying directly to Trump on Twitter. “You cannot silence me or the millions of women who have gotten off the sidelines to speak out about the unfitness and shame you have brought to the Oval Office,” she wrote.

    At a news conference later on an unrelated issue, Gillibrand called Trump’s tweet “a sexist smear attempting to silence my voice.”

    “I will not be silent on this issue, neither will women who stood up to the president yesterday and neither will the millions of women who have been marching since the Women’s March to stand up against policies they do not agree with,” she added.

    Gillibrand once again called on GOP congressional leaders to launch investigations into the allegations made by women against Trump, saying, “It’s the right thing to do, and these allegations should be investigated. They should be investigated thoroughly. That is the right thing to do, and I’m urging them to do that — as should their constituents.”

    Asked about her interactions with the president, Gillibrand told reporters that Trump was “just a supporter — a supporter of my first campaign.”

    [….continues…]

  25. Governor Mark Dayton (DFL) will name the new senator for Minnesota tomorrow.

    The smart money is going for Lieutenant Governor Tina Smith.

    As a contrary sort of person, I’ll pick Representative Rick Nolan, because it opens Nolan’s seat to Leah Phifer : a two-fer.

  26. “. . . Trump was motivated by his long-standing concern about the corrupting influence of money in politics.” -shuckabee

    Yup. He’s all for it.

  27. Mr Sturgeone and Ms Pat,

    Al had better come home because, the life of our truly beloved Governor Dayton has been hanging by a thread for four years, and he can’t be kept waiting.

    Also, there is a $1M!LL!ON check waiting for Al for a one night stand doing the opening on SNL.

  28. Money is good if Ya gotta kid you can trust, but if ya gotta lotta flot bottoms you’ve only managed to empower a bunch of flot bottoms.

  29. Could be, Mr Sturgeone. I’d like to experiment and find out. Maybe, if you front me some cash, I can begin the experiment.

    (Doesn’t that remind you of the Kingfish trying to clean out Andy’s pockets ?)

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