Introduction
 

Acknowledgements
Preface
Foreword
Introduction
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
References

Introduction

Happiness is not elusive and neither is world peace and we must truly believe this to be so. Often our televisions and newspapers do not present images of a peaceful world and we become lured into believing our world is unsafe and unable to sustain any level of peace. To counterbalance this belief perhaps different stories and images need to be created, ones that will assist in the development of a peace consciousness.

Ken Keyes Jr presented The Hundredth Monkey Story[1] as a legend and a hypothesis. A Japanese monkey, Macaca fuscata, which had been observed in the wild on Koshima Island for over thirty years, was the main focus of the story Ken shared. Scientists had provided the monkey with sweet potatoes that had sand on them. The monkey which liked the taste of the potato learned she could wash it in a stream and remove the distasteful dirt. She passed her trick onto her mother and other monkeys observing this action copied her behaviour. After a period of six years scientists observed that many monkeys on the island washed their potatoes to remove any sand before eating them. Amazingly though, it was either the young monkeys which had learned to do so or the mothers of these young ones which imitated their behaviours. There were other mature monkeys which had not learned to wash their potatoes and continued to eat them dirty.

Surprisingly in the autumn of 1958, a large number of Koshima monkeys were washing sweet potatoes then suddenly every monkey, even the mature elders were all washing their potatoes. It appeared there existed a threshold number of them, one that when reached caused a change in the consciousness level of all the monkeys. Keyes implied:

 “The added energy of this hundredth monkey somehow

created an ideological breakthrough!”

The surprises continued as scientists observed this new behaviour of washing sweet potatoes then crossed over the sea to colonies of monkeys on other islands, even to those on the mainland. It was then proposed that when a certain critical number of individuals were aware of something new this affected the level of awareness of the entire community and this new awareness may be passed from mind to mind even to other similar species.

Whether the threshold number is a magical one hundred or not the Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon simply implies that a peace-building consciousness might be achievable if we have a certain number of people believing in its possibility or operating with it. The scientists who were observing the monkeys suggested it might take only one more individual to tune into any pre-existing awareness before the transformation can take place and it becomes a universal consciousness amongst an entire population. It may also be significant to note that, as occurred with the monkeys, it may be our young adults need to imitate to ensure this threshold number is surpassed.

The present stories we share, especially those we choose to share with our children, often do not nurture and reinforce our belief that every person deserves happiness and world peace is possible. Perhaps as we teach or learn ourselves to focus on peace-building in the everyday stories we share rather than the violence, terrorism, racism and then this simple beginning may help make this world a happier and peaceful place for everyone. That hundredth monkey might be us or a child with whom we share any stories.

In James Redfield's and Michael Murphy's book God and the Evolving Universe, the writers suggest that the universe has a telos. This ultimate end seemingly is influencing and shaping every aspect of our daily existence, enticing us to create peace upon earth. It is suggested by the authors that there is no option but peace...it is our destiny.

Aristotle, around 2,400 years ago, as highlighted by Paul Davies in The Cosmic Blueprint, was primarily a mathematician who made important contributions by systematising deductive logic but who also intuitively developed a holistic and harmonious image of the universe based upon his understanding of teleology that implies objects and systems are impacted upon by an overriding plan or destiny. As scientific knowledge and understandings developed into the first century of the Common Era, this kind of thinking was replaced by the deterministic and reductionist thinking of men such as Sir Issac Newton[2]. But as Paul Davies and Lynne McTaggert, who wrote The Field suggest, the new science of the 21st Century is quickly recognising the universe’s creative power and that a seemingly chaotic and random universe does in fact possess a guiding blueprint. Creation is something that is constantly occurring and equilibrium and order prevail. So perhaps, if Aristotle was correct, we need to focus more upon how we can create peace and harmonious balance rather than becoming lost in the chaos and hopelessness.

The intention of the peace-building stories and activities presented in this book is for any person involved with children, whether a parent, a grandparent, a teacher, a child-care worker, or a health care professional, to ignite children’s imaginations and expand their understandings about peace and how it can be created and become an active part of the creation process. Our children's imaginations may provide the key in creating sustainable world peace. Our children are our hope. By imagining peace and telling and sharing peace-building stories that remind us of that place and how we can all create it, together we can consolidate the road to peace.

 

Endnotes

1] The Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon means that when only a limited number of people know of a new way, it may remain the consciousness property of these people. But there is a point at which if only one more person tunes-in to a new awareness, a field is strengthened so that this awareness is picked up by almost everyone! Retrieved November 28, 2008 from http://www.100thmonkey.com/zwebstory100th.html

[2] Sir Isaac Newton was born in 1642 in Lincolnshire, England and was one of the world’s great scientists because he took his ideas, and the ideas of earlier scientists, and combined them into a unified picture of how the universe works. He explained the workings of the universe through mathematics. He formulated laws of motion and gravitation. These laws are math formulas that explain how objects move when a force acts on them. Retrieved November 28, 2008 from http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/blnewton.htm

 

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