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Revolution 2.0

In TED's first talk of 2011, Al Jazeera's director-general Wadah Khanfar shares his view on the historic uprisings happening in the Middle East. As democratic revolutions led by tech-empowered young people sweep the Arab world, Wadah Khanfar shares a profoundly optimistic view of what's happening in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and beyond. He spoke on March 1, 2011 in Long Beach, California, where he discussed how we can "imagine a future that is magnificent and peaceful and tolerant."...

Wadah Khanfar: "The future has arrived... and the future is now."

Another 2011 TED talk was with Wael Ghonim, the Google executive who helped jumpstart Egypt's democratic revolution. Ghonim is an Internet activist and computer engineer who started an influential Facebook page that galvanized voices of protest in Egypt. In early 2011, he was detained by the Egyptian government for 11 days. After he was released, he became a leading fugure in the youth revolution that forced Hosni Mubarak from power. Speaking in Cairo, he tells the inside story of the past two months, when everyday Egyptians showed that "the power of the people is stronger than the people in power."

"Our revolution is like Wikipedia. Everyone is contributing content. You don't know the names of the people contributing the content. Revolution 2.0 in Egypt was exactly the same. Everyone contributing small pieces, bits and pieces. We drew this whole picture of a revolution. And no one is the hero in that picture." Ghonim explained on 60 Minutes....

Wael Ghonim: "This was Revolution 2.0. No one was a hero, because everyone was a hero."

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The music of revolution

The Al Jazeera network aired a video on February 24, 2011 called "The Music of Revolution". Journalist Riz Khan interviewed musician Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, about his latest song "My People" which is inspired by the popular uprisings calling for freedom and change in the Arab world. The song was recorded in a studio 100 meters from the Berlin Wall, which fell in 1989 paving the way for the unification of Germany and the collapse of communism in Europe.

The video asks, "How can musicians invoke the spirit of rebellion?" and "How important is music as an instrument of social change?" They also discuss social networks and the way new technologies are helping to create change in the Middle East. Yusuf explains, "It shows you the incredible power the internet can be when it's used correctly for ideas."

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Mythical Realms


The World Peace Through Technology Organization presents the 12th annual How Weird Street Faire on Sunday May 1, 2011 in downtown San Francisco! The celebration of peace takes place from Noon to 8pm, centered at the Paxorium - in the intersection of Howard and 2nd Streets - or more specifically 37° 47' 12.4" N, 122° 23'53.7" W.

This year's theme is "Mythical Realms", which represents our collective ideas about life, society, and culture. What would a real "place of peace" look like? Come to the faire and find out. The Paxorium will be surrounded by nine city blocks filled with art, music, performances, and creativity... along with a great collection of vendors and food. Expect all the unique weirdness of San Francisco, and thousands of people from around the world in colorful costumes....

For more information about How Weird visit www.HowWeird.org

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The Cosmic Dance


The theme of the 2010 How Weird Street Faire is "Bollyweird: The Cosmic Dance".

The Cosmic Dance represents the movement of the universe, from the galaxies and planets, to all life, to subatomic particles.

According to Hindi mythology, Shiva is the Cosmic Dancer who performs his divine dance to continue the unfolding of all existence, and create harmony in the universe. The Cosmic Dance of Shiva is called “Ananda Tandava”, meaning the Dance of Bliss. It symbolizes the cosmic cycles of creation and destruction, as well as the daily rhythm of night and day.

"Dancing is an art in which the artist and the art created are one and the same, thought to evoke the oneness of God and creation." Explains Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy in "The Dance of Siva". Shiva's dance is "the clearest image of the activity of God which any art or religion can boast of."

According to Fritzof Capra, “the Dance of Shiva symbolizes the basis of all existence. At the same time, Shiva reminds us that the manifold forms in the world are not fundamental, but illusory and ever-changing. Modern physics has shown that the rhythm of creation and destruction is not only manifest in the turn of the seasons and in the birth and death of all living creatures, but is also the very essence of inorganic matter."

"According to quantum field theory, the dance of creation and destruction is the basis of the very existence of matter. Modern physics has thus revealed that every subatomic particle not only performs an energy dance, but also is an energy dance; a pulsating process of creation and destruction. For the modern physicists then, Shiva’s dance is the dance of subatomic matter, the basis of all existence and of all natural phenomena.”

In a spirit of cross-cultural appreciation, this year's How Weird Street Faire will feature music and art from India and beyond. The faire will end with our version of the “Cosmic Dance”. We will attempt to break the world’s record for the Largest Bollywood Dance, a tribute to Bollywood’s role as the largest film genre in the world.

This year's center intersection, the faire's legendary urban crop circle, with feature a Temple to Shiva and the Cosmic Dance. In the middle will be a two meter tall statue of Shiva Nataraja, the Lord of Dance.

On June 18, 2004, a two meter tall statue of the Indian deity Shiva Nataraja, was unveiled at CERN, the European Center for Research in Particle Physics in Geneva. The statue was given to CERN by the Indian government to celebrate the research center's long association with India.

In choosing the image of Shiva Nataraja, the Indian government acknowledged the profound significance of the metaphor of Shiva's dance for the cosmic dance of subatomic particles, which is observed and analyzed by CERN's physicists. CERN represents the cutting edge of technology, from creating the World Wide Web, to operating the Large Hadron Collider, the world's largest scientific experiment.

The plaque on the statue concludes with a quote from Fritjof Capra, "Hundreds of years ago, Indian artists created visual images of dancing Shivas in a beautiful series of bronzes. In our time, physicists have used the most advanced technology to portray the patterns of the cosmic dance. The metaphor of the cosmic dance thus unifies ancient mythology, religious art, and modern physics."

Raising our consciousness and understanding leads to peace.

Shiva's dance at CERN, a global center of technological innovation...

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A Still More Glorious Dawn Awaits


Just Brilliant!

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Code For A Cause


The World Peace Through Technology Organization recently affiliated with a technology user group, the Chicago Drupal Meet Up Group (CDMUG), to help inspire community-building and world peace through advanced technological tools. The Code for a Cause Hack-a-thon was a two day coding sprint where attendees had the opportunity to contribute to small development projects to create applications for local non-profit organizations and community groups.

The event was extremely successful with approximately two dozen active participants and another 50-60 observers who visited the Hack-a-thon to learn more about the use of open source software in the non-profit/volunteer sector. The participants developed an online homeless shelter search for Chicago, a prototype website for a non-profit organization called Green World Campaign, an online survey management and reporting tool, and a screen scraping tool for website migrations....

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Did you know?

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The new Peacetour site


The new site is live today.

There's lots of tweaks to come as we go forward. And some content will be coming soon.  But fell free to create an account and add to the mix.  Users can add .mp3 files, QuickTime video, have their own peace related blog, and participate in the peace forums.  And send any peaceful quotes of wisdom to webmaster@peacetour.org

Let's get the disscussion going!


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