The Living Values Education organisation, which is headed by author Sharon Parris-Chambers, is calling on Jamaicans to live the message of One Love - acceptance, universal brotherhood, forgiveness, and respect - as a way to celebrate the birthday of reggae icon Bob Marley.
"Jamaica has given birth to one love, a message of unconditional love and acceptance for all," said Parris-Chambers, Jamaica's national coordinator for Living Values Education. "It has been spread throughout the world through the music and vibrations of reggae, a spiritual music that uplifts and empowers."
According to Parris-Chambers, the time has come for Jamaicans to understand and fully embrace the healing message, which was an integral part of Marley's music, whose birthday falls on February 6.
"This is a healing message for our time," said Parris-Chambers, "just as it was when Bob Marley embraced it and lived it during his lifetime, through his philosophy and music."
While her specific focus is on getting locals to return to Marley's One Love philosophy as a way of life, Parris-Chambers said it is a message that should be universally embraced, especially in those parts of the world experiencing conflicts, strife, hunger and abuse.
"Let us be the light of the world and make Jamaica shine as the jewel that she is," she said. "Let us return to One Love as a way of life. It means that we will love, accept, forgive and respect ourselves and our fellow brothers and sisters."
In her message soliciting support for the Living Values Education initiative, Parris-Chambers is calling on Jamaicans to form prayer groups or meditation groups with chanting and drumming to express their love in 'One Love gatherings'. She also wants people to speak healing words, greet each other with the words 'One Love'' and seek to create a One Love project in their communities.
INSPIRED BY MARLEY TRIBUTE
According to Parris-Chambers, the initiative was inspired by the national tribute to Bob Marley on his 60th birthday in 2005. On that occasion, six women, including Parris-Chambers, read a document to the masses, who had gathered, calling on Jamaicans to pray and fast for national healing.
In a poem (her personal work), which she recited on the occasion, Parris-Chambers read the following: "The call to action is now at hand. Begin today, my beloved nation, with prayer and fasting; reflect on our National Anthem and pledge. You are called today to be reborn in One Love. Speak healing words; let these vibrations be food for your soul. Look down on yourself no more. You are a gift of love. Heal yourself with One Love. Heal Jamaica, one heart at a time."