I wonder if my early thoughts of COEXIST started in college as I studied to be a teacher. I painted this back then, and I think it expressed my feelings about the innocence of children and their ability to coexist before the world teaches them differently. This painting has been hanging in the school office ever since I brought it in for a quick-and-easy bulletin board many years ago and the principal said it was staying put. Few people even know I did it since it has my former name. It's very interesting that the particular school I have worked at for thirteen years is very multicultural in a community that prides itself on its diversity.
Have you ever gone to a playground and watched preschoolers? They seem to innately know how to coexist. They often begin to play together without any introductions or hesitations. They are much more interested in the work of playing then in judging who they are playing with. Of course, later in elementary school, relationships are formed and the complications that can arise from them on the playground, but I believe we are born with the ability and tendency to want to live peacefully. Living in a volatile and unpredictable world changes that somewhere along the way.
So, as I start a new school year tomorrow I hope and pray for peaceful coexistence - for us all.