Thursday, 19 November 2015

Doves of peace

I've been struggling to motivate myself to post anything here this past week. Since events in Paris last Friday, the thought of posting pictures of more deer cushions or more mice related making has felt a bit too trite. As much as what happened on Friday itself was horrific and sickening, it's been the growing response to it over this last week which disturbs me even more. Part of this is obviously the calls for 'war' and revenge. Clearly a very predictable response. Isis appear to want to polarise the world into 2 sides and propel us towards war, and their tactics seem to be incredibly successful in this. I have no idea what the answer is as far as military intervention or not is concerned, or what kind of intervention, any which way it's a mess. But it's the hatred and fear which the attacks have invoked which disturb me the most. And particularly the hatred and fear of the refugees fleeing Syria.

It feels more important than ever at this time to show our compassion and common humanity and love, rather than deepen lines of division. And if we don't do this, how much more will we fuel the conflict which seems to be building alarmingly fast? How much more will we push others into taking the path of the extremist 'side'. Take a minute to watch this short video: Don't forget Syria.

This video is from a year ago, I have no idea how genuine it is. But I have no doubt that there are thousands of boys and girls this hungry and hopeless both in Syria, and fleeing their homeland. Here are some statistics from the charity 'Save the Children'.
  • 11,000 children have been killed in Syria and 7.5 million have been affected by the conflict. 
  • 2.1 million Syrian children are now refugees, living in overstretched camps, cramped temporary accommodation or on the move. 
  • More than 10 million people have been forced from their homes and 13.5 million need humanitarian aid. 
  • More than one fifth of the country's education buildings have been either destroyed or damaged, or are being used for military purposes.
These are the children we seem to be turning our backs on, persuading ourselves that they're not our problem, or that it's too dangerous to reach out to them. Even apart from their desperate need right now and how it's incomprehensible that we can ignore that, lets think about the future, not just their future but ours too, and our children's future. As they grow up, these desperate children, full of fear and unwanted, which side of the conflict will they choose? Which 'side' will give them the most hope? Which 'side' will offer them the most appealing future? At the moment I don't feel our 'side' is really offering much at all to them. What will they have to lose? Surely we are creating perfect conditions for increased and continual radicalisation.

I didn't really mean to go into full political rant mode here, it's just kind of hard to restrain it! But this space is more for making. So before I get round to posting more deer and mice, I have a couple of other cushions today.

Some doves, hopefully a fairly universal symbol of peace and love.

They're made from beautifully soft, repurposed wool, and they've been surprisingly calming and comforting both to make and just to look at now. I say 'surprisingly' because they don't actually change anything, or provide any logical reason for comfort or calm. And yet I feel the need to have one on my sofa for their irrational comforting and calming properties!

But I made these 2 for my Christmas Fair stall, and, if they sell, the money from them will go to the Save the Children Syrian Crisis Appeal.

Hopefully, even if we are incapable of resolving this conflict, our children, and all the children across the world, will manage better in the years ahead and they will get it right. We just have to get it right for the children, right now.



  1. Beautiful post my friend, and it echos many of my own thoughts. I love your pillows, they are beautiful, and made with much thought and love.


  2. Your pillows are a wonderful idea and beautiful, as well. Your post was heartfelt and thought provoking.

  3. The love that went into making your pillows is obvious - they're beautiful. I'm not sure what the right answer is now, but I'm praying that our leaders will make the best choices.

  4. the pillows are beautiful, with a lovely message of peace. If they don't sell at the fair I'll buy one x

  5. How fitting that working on these beautiful symbols of peace helped bring you a sense of peace in this time of upheaval. Lots of love went into these, they just radiate calm through the screen.

  6. I rarely, if ever, comment on political posts, but you are spot on, Sally!!! Well said!!! Your cushions are beautiful.

  7. I agree. Wholeheartedly. The ability of people to dehumanise others can be astonishing at times.

  8. A dove of peace is the perfect answer, Sally. Because there really are no words.

  9. So many of your words, my husband and I have spoken to each other and with others for the last few days. So mny emotions running on high. it is hard to think on the situation with a clear heart.
    The cushions are beautiful Sally.

  10. they are beautiful
    and well, said too - couldnt agree more about those suffering most due to the crisis in the middle east and Syria especially


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