7 october 2011, not yet at peace

It's kol nidrei (see the great jazz singer) tonight, and I'll be there, as slowly we integrate onto our community here. I'll be asking for peace, and so it's appropriate that it's also the day the most famous peace roll call is added to, as this year ellen johnson sirleaf, leymah gbowee and tawakkul karman are awarded the nobel peace prize. I do try in my own way to bring joy to those I know and a better basis of happiness to those I don't, but how can we but gasp at the laureates' incredible feats, as they show themselves ready to sacrifice their very lives, let alone wellbeing and happiness, for the vast good of millions of others. They rightly join aung san suu kyi, nelson mandela, mother theresa, martin luther king, mikhail gorbachev, the dalia lama, lech walensa, kofi annan and, er, barack obama (10 oct 2009) and al gore. I still love the story of why nobel founded the prize, having read his own obituary in a newspaper and realised he'd be remembered forever as the inventor of what was then the most destructive force known to man, dynamite. A rather better legacy, and a good exercise for us all.