"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth."-Baha'u'llah
Watch the video to learn what unity is, different ways kids can practice unity and how Joy Sun Bear is promoting unity.
We have had a pleasure exploring the word unity this month and the benefits of unity from internal, to interpersonal, to global. A lofty and worthy goal for many of us is to find a way where we can come together, no matter where we come from, and unite our world. It's a big goal and may seem out of reach at times, but the fact that many of us want this and seek ways to make it happen, gives hope for us all!
No matter what age, race, culture, gender, etc., anyone can find ways to build unity in the world around them, affecting others and ultimately the world we share.
In our first blog of the month, our co-author/illustrator wrote about his epiphany about unity when asking his 6 year old what she thought it is while playing with her Legos, "it's when you come together for something." Isn't it amazing how in tune young children are and at many time end up being our guides to inner awareness and joy?
The great news is unity starts from within and each of us can do our part by "YOUnifying" with ourselves. We touched on some different ways this can be done in our second blog of the month. Unifying our outward actions with our inner spiritual and emotional well being is the best thing we can do to help unify the world.
In our third blog of month, we talked about how unity can be appreciated in all it's forms, from large, coordinated efforts, to a simple get together like some friends gathering to draw a mural with sidewalk chalk. What is important is to recognize when unity is happening, because it can provide an important momentum that can be harnessed to maximize the impact of everyone's efforts.
The barriers to unity are many; prejudice, assumption, and miscommunication are just the tip of the iceberg. And just like an iceberg, the vast majority of the barriers lie buried beneath the surface, within the ocean of our egos, hidden and murky and unknown even to our own awareness. But these barriers are like any other element of our egos, silently affecting our moods and opinions through confirmation bias, stereotypes, and judgement.
If we are to unite the world and create a better one, we must each awaken and become more aware of ourselves, what we're thinking, and what we are doing.
A united and better world will require change from everyone, but it will not require everyone to change. The world is amazing because of all the diversity within it. To unite the world we must all love and respect ourselves, and our uniqueness, so that we can love and respect the uniqueness in others. Only when we can be happy that someone is different than us can we begin to make the most of the relationship.
We were delighted to learn what Mrs. Joyce and her 3/4J class in Australia thought could unite our world. Here is what she had to say:
Hi Joy Sun Bear,
I feel so proud of the students in 3/4J after they shared their feelings about how they could unite the world. After watching a global movie about the displacement the Syrian Refugees, the class expressed real mature answers to such a big question. How can we unite the world? Their feelings were as follows:
It is important we understand how other people are feeling, have empathy.
They reflected on how lucky their lives are here in Australia. It is important to appreciate ourselves to appreciate others.
Share our knowledge and education with those that are struggling to access an education. We could write letters and we could share our class via ourglobalclassroom.com.
People of the world need to follow the Golden Rule which is our unit motto. Treat those the way you would like to treated.
Educate ourselves about people experiencing displacement.
Inspire people around the world to understand others and find ways to help.
Lastly feel comfortable to share your feelings with others.
These thoughts are from a group of children that are a real inspirational to me as their teacher and to others around the world. These kids face their own challenges everyday but through a love for education they want to help others.
Thank you so much for sending this inspiring message, Mrs. Joyce! It is amazing to see how aware, mature and compassionate these young 3rd and 4th graders are and it really gives us hope and motivation to keep sharing these kind of discussions with children and families.
We also asked you all what you think could unite our world through our blogs and social media. We put all your responses into the word art picture below to get a unique visual of what unity means to our followers.
We hope you enjoyed our Joy of Unity video and our discussion about this important word this month. We hope our blogs can help kids and adults practice ways to unify with themselves, their communities and the world!
To share more about unity with your kids and students, check out these books!
Thanks again for visiting, and we wish you a wonderful day!
-Joy Sun Bear