Nobel Peace Prize: Obama & Soultravelers3!

December 10, 2009

Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo City Hall Nobelpriset

Yes! We were in Oslo in the room where they give the Nobel Peace Prizes which is pretty impressive, especially for a little girl who had just turned 8 in nearby Stockholm where she also visited the museum for the Nobel Prize. Yet another amazing family travel adventure in "roadschooling" and education!


She practiced her own acceptance speech on the very stage that  President Obama was on today as well as past winners like the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. We were there in September 2008 and had the Oslo City Hall  (where it is held), totally to ourselves, so she was free to imagine big and plant an ideal seed for her own peaceful future.

She watched Obama's Inauguration speech in Spain and was curious about today's events based on that, her travel experiences, reading and our family discussions. The site has some good information for kids and even fun games like this Peace Dove Game that lets kids save the world from the proliferation of nuclear weapons!


According to Nobel,  the Peace Prize recipient "during the preceding year... shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.

It seems confusing to many how a war president who just days ago ordered 30,000 more U.S. troops into Afghanistan could be getting a "peace prize" but perhaps that is because he was nominated in October and had been elected on a promise of change. Perhaps it was for the "hope of peace". Sadly, President Obama disappoints us as much as President Bush, but I suppose that is how many feel about their political leaders today in many places around our planet. I find politics and politicians frustrating.


That said, I won't give up the dream of peace for our planet or teaching my child peaceful ways.  Like Ghandi's famous quote I believe strongly that:

"We must become the change we want to see in the world."

and like Michael Jackson's famous song, we must all begin by looking at the man in the mirror. That's why we are big fans of The Institute of Individual and World Peace and this quote from the founder:

"Individual peace is the prelude to world peace.
Individual peace starts with you, regardless of what anybody else does."


We are grateful that there is a prestigious peace prize and that we got to learn more about it on our travels and get that "close up" view. It's a hands-on experience that will stay with Mozart forever.


How do you practice being more peaceful in your life? We find our extended travel and deep immersion into other cultures a fabulous way to learn more about peace. We don't always do it perfectly, but I think over all, our travels have made us more peaceful as a family and as individuals.


We did really enjoy our time in Oslo and Norway and still need to complete many stories about our wonderful travels in Scandinavia. Today's events just brought back great memories and a teachable moment for our child this afternoon in sunny Andalusia and just made me want to share a little with you too! 


I'm glad that this day of awarding a peace prize gives us all another opportunity to contemplate peace and consider how we can bring ourselves into greater peace. Wouldn't it be wonderful if each of us could strive for our own peace prize every day?

"Responsibility does not only lie with the leaders of our countries or with those who have been appointed or elected to do a particular job. It lies with each of us individually. Peace, for example, starts within each one of us. When we have inner peace, we can be at peace with those around us."

Dalai Lama

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Shannon OD

I love that link to kids games - what a great way for me to introduce the topic with my niece and nephew and perhaps direct some of their internet time in a positive direction!

I also agree that traveling and keeping a conscious and open mind to new cultures and experiences is a great way to implement personal peace while gently spreading it outward :-)


@Shannon- So glad you liked that game, we thought it was a fun learning tool also! Yes indeed, traveling and peace do go together nicely. ;)


wooow! that´s amazing!!! the opportunities your daughter is having are simply magnificent!! she´s absorbing so much information! very lucky!

Dee Andrews

I've been following your family for a couple years now. You first inspired our trip to Morocco, then Turkey. Both highlights in our lives. And now your Oslo experience! I will file it away for us to consider. We are back in the States now after our extended year of living and traveling in Spain. Onward, eventually, elsewhere I hope.


@Adriana - Aw, thanks! Our journey really has been an amazing opportunity for educating our child! Even more than we expected.

@Dee - That is so great to hear! Thanks for letting us know. Looks like you had a fabulous year!


I must say I'm surprised that Obama disappoints you as much as Bush!

I don't want to argue abut it but I do think people are way too hard on Obama. My impression is that he inherited a mess, that he's working extremely hard to fix it, and that he's making good progress amid tough challenges. No one said it would be easy and sadly he doesn't have a magic wand.

I also think that politics is the art of the possible and I would rather that he set and met realistic goals rather than spent his time tilting at windmills.


@Caitlin - I hear your points and I didn't really want to get into politics as this is primarily a travel blog and we have people who follow us with lots of different political view points. I'm sure there are many who have been much happier with Bush & Obama than we have been.

Goldman Sachs and the "banksters" were the biggest contributors to both Obama's and Bush's campaigns.

I don't really see that much difference in the 2 parties today. I have to agree with Sen Durbin who said;

"And the banks -- hard to believe in a time when we're facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created -- are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place,"

They own both Bush and Obama ( and Clinton before them).

I know you tend to lean to the left, so I'm not surprised that you feel a need to support Obama, but read these fact filled criticisms from left leaning sources:

Read Matt Taibbi ( one of the few investigative reporters doing his job! )on Finances and how Obama sold out America:

Or these numbers that show Obama ( despite running for change and ending war quickly) out does Bush in escalating:

It is true that Obama inherited a mess, but he hasn't done anything significant to change it, in my humble opinion.

"I like to believe that people in the long run are going to do more to promote peace than our governments. Indeed, I think that people want peace so much that one of these days governments had better get out of the way and let them have it."
Dwight D. Eisenhower

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