Friday, January 12, 2007

Peace Beads: Resurrecting a Symbol for Peace - <a href="http://www. peacebeads. org " onclick="linkClick(this. href)">www. peacebeads. org </a&gt

Peace Beads: Resurrecting a Symbol for Peace - www. peacebeads. org

Our mission is to promote global peace in today's world through the symbolic wearing and giving of Peace Beads. Peace Beads are made by Native Americans and are becoming increasingly popular with artists and celebrities. Be a part of something special - buy Peace Beads at www. peacebeads. org!

(PRWEB) May 4, 2003

Manhattan Beach, CA - As a teenager, Heather Ross, founder of H. Ross Productions, Inc. planned to have several careers in life – not just one. Having grown up in Tucson, Arizona, she moved to California at seventeen to attend the Claremont Colleges where she majored in political studies and studied the cello. In pursuit of her “first career” in journalism, Ross moved to Los Angeles immediately after college where by a twist of fate she ended up in commercial real estate, managing office buildings for the next twelve years, most recently the million square foot 52-story 777 Tower in Downtown Los Angeles. It was a fulfilling career, but one that would eventually lead to other roads. “Eventually” came last year when Ross decided to leave that industry to pursue her dream of writing. Shortly thereafter her former employer surprised her with an offer to consult as a writer on some of the company’s development projects – her first freelance writing job! Or at least that’s what she thought at the time.

Emerging Social Consciousness

It was while researching the indigenous people of Chiapas, Mexico and Native Americans of the High Plains that the idea first occurred to Ross. Actually she would say it hit her like a freight train. The world was too vast with natural resources, thought Ross, too rich in economic prosperity for there to be people as impoverished as those she was studying. It seemed sadly ironic that as the worldÂ’s rich were getting richer, the poor seemed to be getting poorer. Moreover the fight over the worldÂ’s natural resources had often led to war. It occurred to Ross that in the middle of this “age of information” what the majority of the world is crying out for is an end to this constant struggle and an end to the economic gap we would seemingly have evolved beyond by now. In fact it has been theorized that soon after the “age of information” would come the “age of reflection” and this age would need a symbolÂ…a symbol of peace, freedom and equality. Ross suddenly remembered the long beaded peace necklaces of the 1960s. Whatever happened to that tradition? The idea of giving something to another human being in the spirit of peace and love was so simple, yet powerful. If brought back today, Peace Beads™ could be a symbol so general it would transcend current events, cultural and other differencesÂ…clearly we all want peace; we simply disagree on how to get there. Furthermore, Ross thought, todayÂ’s Peace Beads™ could be sold to raise funds for different non-profit foundations, schools and organizations that share the philosophy of peace. With this in the back of her mind, Ross continued her research. And then one day it happenedÂ

Native Americans and Peace

Ross had first met her Native American friend Pat Schildt in January when she traveled to the High Plains to research Native Americans in that area. Although they came from completely different backgrounds and lived worlds apart, Ross knew immediately there was a purpose for their meeting. Whatever paths had gotten them there, they now shared the same ambition – to promote peace and to bring hope to people that had none. Schildt explained that Native Americans believe “true peace can only be achieved when it is felt from within.” When Ross mentioned her idea about resurrecting the tradition of Peace Beads™, Schildt responded with great exuberance, “Heather, there is an 85 percent unemployment rate on the reservation…these people need work. And they are very talented beaders!”

The Peace Beads™ Plan Was Born

After the meeting, Ross returned to California and worked diligently on the preparations including a business plan that covered everything from necklace design to a detailed operation and sales plan to creating a website www. peacebeads. org, while Schildt set up the manufacturing shop on the reservation. Less than eight weeks later they were up and running! Schildt said the day he put the “now hiring” notices up around town, he had people lined up in the snow ready to work.

“We enjoy the Peace Beads™ project because our people are able to work and are also being recognized for their beading talent,” said Kim Bear Medicine.

“I am proud of the fact that we are able to work for world peace, which is something our native people have always believed in,” said Renae Bull Child.

Before Ross met the individual workers, now collectively named the “High Plains Indian Alliance”, she was pleased to think in some way she was giving them new hope. She left the workers realizing it was quite the other way around!

The Peace Beads™ mission is:

Peace Beads™ is committed to generating global peace, envisioning a world in which every human being may enjoy freedom and self-expression. Today’s Peace Beads™ are a symbol of this vision, given by one person to another in the same spirit that made original peace beads popular in the 1960s.

Peace Beads™ are made with seven gemstones, gifts of the earth that have been chosen for their beauty and unifying energy. Each gemstone symbolizes one of the seven continents and represents our connection with one another as we embark on a journey of peaceful solutions to resolve our differences. The unique blending of beads and gemstones represents the blending of people worldwide.

Peace Beads™ are made by communities in need, fostering the opportunity for increased stability and prosperity. Our first design is specially crafted by Native Americans of the North American High Plains, bringing together members of different tribes working harmoniously, creating a model for international peace.

Peace Beads™ draws from the wisdom of the many great traditions represented by each manufacturing community. The High Plains Native Americans teach us that peace between nations begins with true peace within the souls of individuals. It is by nurturing and sharing this inner peace that we invent a world of freedom, compassion and non-violence. Wearing and giving Peace Beads™ symbolizes the first step in this movement embracing global peace.

In an effort to further promote global peace, Peace Beads™ supports various non-profit groups, schools and communities that share our philosophy. These relationships enable us to assist in raising funds to support the overall cause and to reach more people with the message of peace and freedom.

Peace Beads™ Mission Statement

“Our mission is to promote global peace in today’s world through the symbolic wearing and giving of Peace Beads™.

‘Choose peace…give Peace Beads™’