A worldwide movement for social change is coming to Sedona on the International Day of Peace! You are invited to participate in the first Human Library event at Sedona Public Library on the International Day of Peace, Thursday, September 21, from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Organized by the Sedona International City of Peace, Rotary Club of Sedona, and Sedona Public Library, this free community event affords a special opportunity for everyone to make a difference in a heartwarming and peaceful manner!
In four, 30-minute time slots, event participants can become Human Library “readers” by selecting up to four “Human Books,” listening to their short presentations, and engaging in a dialogue with the book to gain understanding. A listing of the Human Books will be available on Sedona Library’s website and as a hard copy at the Library prior to the event.
The Human Library project (www.humanlibrary.org), an international effort that is now local, is designed to “build a positive framework for conversations that can challenge stereotypes and prejudices through dialogue.” The biases we hold just under the surface of our personal and collective awareness can often be a source of social and community tension or unrest. As a community, we can illuminate and perhaps dissolve these prejudices, gain new understanding, and even come to new ways of relating to people we may avoid, dismiss, resent, or generally judge unfairly.
Some Human Books who will be available include:
Police Chief; Psychic Pedicurist; Medical Marijuana Baker; Pipsqueak Animal Communicator; Ex-Catholic Nun; Non-Indigenous Shaman; Invisible Unemotional Man; Political Conservative; Nude Model; High School Drop Out on Welfare; Death Specialist; Orthodox Sikh Attorney; Homeless Mentally Ill Veteran; Prisoner; Spiritual Crazy; Stateless and Illegal Aliens; and various Body Shapes.
These live Human Books will courageously share their stories of being marginalized, categorized, or stigmatized for their differences. In the process, stigmas or judgments around such things as religion, sexuality, mental or physical challenges, immigration, police, lifestyle conditions from poverty, war, trauma, and end-of-life choices are explored.
As the Human Book coordinator and a founder of the Sedona International City of Peace, I hope you will participate in the Human Library event, whether you are conservative, liberal, religious, atheist, extreme social activist, or apathetic. I believe you will walk away simply inspired and humbled by our common humanity. The polarizing climate that exists in our country and our local community today begs for open dialogue and compassionate understanding on this International Day of Peace. We can learn this together. There are few transformational events like this that occur in one’s life, where in a matter of minutes, we can be taken to a new level of collective consciousness and deep connection. That is how peace comes to our life and world.
Please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the 4:45, 5:30, 6:15, and 7:00 reading times to select and be guided to your book. If you have any questions, please call the Library at 928-282-7714.
The Sedona International City of Peace was recognized and established as the 35th city of now over 200 International Cities of Peace in 2012. The Sedona City Council declared September 21 as the Sedona International Day of Peace in perpetuity. Rotary is an organization of community leaders who meet regularly to exchange ideas and take action to make their community and the world a better place. The Rotary Club of Sedona is best known locally for the Imagination Library program for preschool children. The partnership between Sedona International City of Peace, the Rotary Club of Sedona, and the Library aligns us all in our commitment in expanding our reach and impact in creating a culture of peace in Sedona.
Sedona Public Library
Column for September 15, 2017
Written by Margaret Joy Weaver, Co-Founder Sedona International City of Peace
Library News appears each Friday in the Red Rock News.