The Words of the Vargas Family

Ambassadors for Peace Tour to Guatemala

Maria Luisa Vargas
July 23, 2010
Executive Director, UPF-USA Office for the Coordination of Hispanic Affairs

Guatemala City, Guatemala -- The Ambassadors for Peace Americas Tour 2010 to Guatemala was a seven-day service and fact-finding tour from July 17 to 23. The purpose of the tour was to foster cooperation and unity of the American hemisphere by building partnerships among Ambassadors for Peace from North and South America.

This was the second Ambassadors for Peace Americas tour to Guatemala; the first took place July 18-24, 2009.

Ambassadors for Peace visited the historic town of Antiqua (which translated means "antique"), the Mayan ruins at Ximiche, and the towns of Panajachel and Santiago Atitlan, two of 12 towns surrounding Lake Atitlan. The 12 towns are named after Jesus' 12 Apostles. Lake Atitlan is one mile above sea level and has three volcanoes. "Atitlan" is a Mayan word meaning "the place where the rainbow gets its colors."

Ambassadors for Peace toured the Santiaguito Elementary School in Santiago Atitlan and gave school supplies to the Eorm Chu'ul Elementary School donated by several United Nations Secretariat staff members. Ofr Braver, an Israeli, was impressed by the children of the school. He found them to be well behaved, intelligent, and warm in spite of their economic conditions.

We met with local Ambassadors for Peace, a former mayor, and community leaders. We shared our views about the needs of our communities. Through the personal interaction and sharing we found, in the words of Ofr Braver, that "they are just like me." A world traveler and successful businessman, he said he visits tourists sites and shops but had not had the opportunity to eat, share, and speak personally with people.

Through personal sharing and one-on-one meetings, walls start to break down and people unite in heart across borders, nationalities, races, and religions. Only this way can we more deeply understand and appreciate other cultures, faiths, and traditions. When people unite in heart, there cannot be war.

Seminars were held in Santiago Atitlan and Guatemala City on the theme of "Institutionalizing a Culture of Heart." I explained the meaning of a culture of peace and what it means to institutionalize a culture of heart.

Dror Ashuah spoke about the era that we are in as a time of rapid change. "There will be many changes taking place as we move into our feelings and are guided by love," he said, "We learn about love through women, who are naturally connected to that energy. Children and men learn love through mothers, women. Thus, we need to support and encourage women to move into central positions in all aspects."

Institutionalizing a culture of heart and making decisions based on the heart, involves supporting and encouraging women to move into center space, he explained. "It is not just 50/50 ratio of men to women, but a 30/70 ratio, corresponding with the planetary ratio, which is 70% feminine, corresponding to the 70% ratio of water to land on the planet. When move to 30/70 percent ratio, the planet will move into a state of integrity, equality, distribution of wealth, and responsible use of resources. The use of power will be balanced when women take central role. Whether we like it or not, this is where the planet is going. Masculine energy is not supported at this time."

Ofr Braver shared his experience as an Israeli soldier; there young men and women serve three years in the armed forces. War is not good, he said, not only because what it does to others, especially children, but for what it did to him. "War is not an option," he added.

A Mayan priest, an Ambassador for Peace from Lake Atitlan, gave to Ambassadors for Peace Braver and Ashuah a necklace with a Mayan calendar symbol, and to me a sash with the symbols of the 20 Mayan calendar days. According to the Mayan calendar, 2012 will be the start of a new era; it is a zero point, the end of an old era and the beginning of a new era. In the previous era, people were led by brute force, but in the new era people will be led by their conscience. He said that in 2011 he will go into seclusion for a year in preparation for 2012.

In the seminar in Guatemala City, Dror Ashuah spoke about the culture of peace. "We all have an immense power to create a ripple of peace around us," he said. "We have as much power as our leaders. We have to be very aware of how we behave, how we think, and how we act, because our thoughts and feelings become manifest much more quickly and have much more power than before. Individuals are becoming more empowered to create a ripple of peace and spread it to the environment. If we leave a meeting speaking about peace and then get into a fight outside the meeting hall, we have not learned how to be peaceful. Peaces is not just theory; we have to practice it in our daily life. It is not just between countries."

He added that everything is becoming more transparent. "Leaders can no longer get away with manipulation and lies," he explained, "because everyone is becoming more aware, especially children. Whatever politicians and businessmen try to hide will be exposed much faster. The planet will look much darker for awhile because everything is being exposed. In reality, there is greater light, and what was hidden is now being exposed."

He talked about planetary energy moving towards the feminine after 5,000 years of being ruled by masculine energy. Many men feel lost and disconnected at this time, and he encouraged women to have patience with them. "Men are not going through an easy time right now and need guidance. Men need to allow women to enter center stage, and this is not easy for many men. I would be the first one to step aside to let a woman take my place. It is time to slow down and pay attention to every movement that you make because how you act, feel, and think carries much more significance than ever before."

At the seminar in Guatemala City a brotherhood ceremony joined representatives from North and South America. The three visiting Ambassadors for Peace took part in the ceremony with three local Ambassadors for Peace and leaders. During the ceremony, each pair met at center stage, bowed to each other in respect, and then embraced, symbolizing the unity of the Americas as well as unity of cultures, traditions, and faiths. It was a moving ceremony, with participants in tears.

Participants exchanged gifts of symbolic significance. The North Americans presented an eagle, which, according to Native Americans, brings the prayers of the people to the creator and brings back the response; it flies higher than any other predatory bird and can see far. The gift of the eagle symbolizes giving the spirit of the eagle to the Ambassadors for Peace and people of Guatemala.

The South American Ambassadors for Peace gave a wooden plaque carved with a Mayan symbol. My plaque had a carving of Tikal, the great city of the ancient Mayas. En route to Guatemala, Dror Ashuah said he was thinking of Tikal and when he lifted his eyes, he saw a beautiful rainbow. Receiving the plaque with Tikal symbolized the breaking down of walls and barriers through the Americas Tour.

Guatemala is the epicenter of Mayan civilization. At Santiago Atitlan there is a strong energy vortex similar to those in the Himalayas and Korea. Before and during the tour, Ambassadors for Peace had many spiritual experiences and received many spiritual messages.

At the Mayan ruins at Ximiche, Dror Ashuah and Ofr Braver had a vision of a group of people in a circle all dressed in white. At certain spots, Ofr Braver said he experienced coldness. When he found out that stones from that area were used to build prisons he could understand the sense of coldness.

I saw several visions while at the Mayan ruins. In one, an earthquake became stronger and stronger until it became unbearable. I understood it to mean that the coming years will bring times of unbearable spiritual tumult and we will need to fortify ourselves spiritually and strengthen our families and communities in order to make it through the times. In another vision, I saw that we have entered a time when everyone is becoming more spiritual.

The Americas Tour brought together representatives from North and South America and Israel -- three strategic points of high energy. We came together as strangers and representatives of former enemy countries but left as friends and partners in peace, joined as one in heart. Through such steps, the seeds for peace are being planted.

A third tour, tentatively scheduled for July 2011, will include other South American countries as well. These are special opportunities for people to become empowered and inspired, gain insights, and gain rich experiences of laying tracks for world peace. 

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