August 6th was our annual From Hiroshima to Hope commemoration, and the 65th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima. It’s held on the lawn at Green Lake, just past the Bathhouse Theater, going counterclockwise around the lake path from the community center.
Native American storyteller & flutist Gene Tagaban told us the story of Raven bringing light to the world, followed by an appearance by Raven (with the accompaniment of a taiko drummer).
The Seattle Kokon Taiko group was next.
They were really impressive! Here’s a clip by lesvictor on YouTube of “Rites of Thundering”, which they performed at the commemoration as well:
There was also an interpretive dance piece of a Hiroshima widow and White Lightning. Video by subversivepeacemaker:
Mona Akmal, a young woman who created Dreamfly Projects, starting schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, spoke of how much the children inspired her.
We also had poetry from students in El Centro de la Raza‘s Hope for Youth Program.
Gene Tagaban played some flute music as preparations were made.
Then there was a Buddhist blessing (there was a Christian one earlier in the evening).
Lanterns were lit and a procession to the lake, starting with the monks and Hiroshima survivors.
Then the lanterns are floated on Green Lake, which is always beautiful.
According to the program the lantern floating ceremony “is an adaption of an ancient Japanese Buddhist ritual, the Toro Nagashi, in which lanterns representing the souls of the dead are floated out to sea and prayers offered that the souls may rest in peace.”
I hope one day soon the world bans all nuclear weapons.