Written by Khalilah Ramirez for Silicon Valley Debug Stories
Greetings to all who are reading! Peace Dancer Khalilah here, reporting on the latest, greatest things, ideas and people in the spirit of peace. This Week In Peace sets out to elevate, inspire and uplift us. Peace in every heart (the mission of the Dance of Peace) is a lofty goal which carries over from the stage and street, into this column. It is a pursuit worthy of our attention.
A major highlight recently was Silicon Valley De-bug’s magazine release party on Saturday July 20th. It was a celebration of multiple victories, including the unveiling of a new memorial, prominently placed in the window of the De-bug headquarters. The full color memorial displays the faces of Bay Area people whose lives have been lost in encounters with law enforcement. Family and friends of the departed came out to celebrate, to grieve and to stand as one in the ongoing fight for justice.
Now let’s talk about our title. This concept known as N.E.R.D. It’s an acronym short for ‘No One Ever Really Dies.’ Provocative yet scientific. Granted, science takes a warranted back seat when grieving the loss of a loved one. Science states that energy can not be destroyed, it can only change forms. Human beings, along with everything in existence, are made of energy. It’s true that our bodies are subject to harm and decay, yet we are much more than our bodies. We are beings of thought, emotion and intelligence. None of which can be seen or touched, all of which have the potential to change the world significantly. The love between ourselves and our departed friends and family is not killed by bullets. It continues as a powerful force, molding us long after our loved ones are “gone.”
Imagine the room that you’re sitting in right now. The air around you is filled with unseen radio frequencies, video signals, brainwaves and the internet. All that is needed to tune into these signals is a device that can pick up the vibrations and translate them into sounds and images. Departed loved ones are that way. They join a realm where we can no longer see them physically, yet their signal, their energy lives on. It is a strong presence that we feel emotionally, that we can “tune into” at any time. Is there a window in the room? If the window is opened, the air, light and noise from outside automatically flows in. We don’t say that the air and light outside doesn’t exist simply because the window is closed. Our hearts can be open windows for our departed loved ones to visit as we remember them with joy, laughter, light and love.
The Dance of Peace was launched on the outside patio in the scant afternoon shade that day. Some of the youth in the DJ booth wanted to start a singalong. Otis Redding’s “Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay” played. The spirit of mega playfulness was deployed, lightening the atmosphere. I brought my silliest dance moves, passing a make-believe microphone around to bolster the singalong. Make-believe instruments including the guitar, harmonica and drums were also used. Pretend instruments disarm anger and grief by effortlessly activating our imaginations. No one can stay sad for very long while singing on an invisible microphone! The singing, dancing, peaceful playtime vibration spread steadily. There was clapping, singing, and laughter afoot in the people. Being together in these ways enhances our lives by creating community in a way that feels fun and meaningful.
As we move through our lives, it’s normal to miss departed loved ones. Often the circumstances surrounding their departure in unjust or tragic. We can thrive in the knowledge that our time together is not over as long as we carry them in our spirits. They are forever a part of us, growing as we grow. Departed loved ones would never want their legacy to be just another sad story. They would want us to experience joy when we think of them, even as we fight for justice. They would want us to have a smile in our hearts recalling them. They would want to be remembered for the unique spirit that they were while they were beside us. Let’s honor our departed loved ones as we ourselves would want to be honored: With LOVE! Thanks and see you out there!