Groundhog Day has been happening for a couple of centuries as a sign of hope. Hope that the cold and harsh weather of winter will end and the warming of spring will arrive. I don’t think anyone still believes in the power of a groundhog’s prognostication, but the tradition has continued as a way to visualize our goals.
With the arrival of the movie Groundhog Day, the holiday has taken on an additional meaning of second chances. And third chances. And fourth chances. And fifth chances . . . . till we finally get it right. A westernization of the karmic wheel. A chance at getting it right.
If a movie can redefine a centuries-old tradition, then we can also. Ok, we don’t have Bill Murray mugging for us yet, but that will come in time. 🙂
So why not think big? Much like John and Yoko’s Christmas 1969 billboards proclaiming
War is Over
My first idea was for this post to be a simple parallel:
If the Groundhog see his shadow, we will have another 10 years of war. If he doesn’t see his shadow, all of our troops will come home.
But that is too simple a formula. And, it leaves the outcome to chance. That is not the strategy we want. We don’t want to give war — and the negative — a chance. We need to aim directly for the positive outcome we want.
So, on Groundhog Day, we will visualize peace into existence: All our troops and mercenaries will be brought home. Our foreign military bases will be closed. Our war ships will be docked at home. Drone flights will end like a bad dream. Foreign military weapons sales will be replaced with renewable energy technology sales. Imagine the parades we can have!
Groundhog day can be our annual peace day to remind us of our commitment to — and even more importantly — our vision of a peaceful world.
We can see peace no matter what the groundhog sees. If it is sunny, then the clouds of war have dispersed. If Groundhog does not see his shadow, then we know that the joy of peace is on the way.
Commentary by poet and activist Ian Wilder of Peace Couple/Wilderside Ltd.