January 9, 2012 · 9:00 am

Láska. Love.

Two years ago I had the incredible opportunity to travel to Europe with my high school chorus. We toured throughout Germany and the Czech Republic, and no place inspired me as much as Prague. In particular, nothing inspired me more than this wall.

It’s called the Lennon Wall. In 1980, when Czechoslovakia was oppressed by a strict political regime, some of the youth in Prague mourned the death of John Lennon by writing notes to him on this wall, chosen for its close location to the neutral French Embassy. Though authorities kept painting over it, more and more people kept returning to write messages of peace and love. Even after the peaceful split of the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993, the wall remains a beautiful symbol of brotherhood in our all-too-violent world.

That one word, Láska, dominates the wall, as it should. It represents all that the wall has to say. It represents everything that we should think of each other and ourselves. From anything as highbrow as war to things as inane as petty gossip or as personal as low self-esteem, we can’t forget about this. No matter how bad it gets, as long as this wall stands, I’ll know there’s hope.

Remember the word and the wall, and know that if peace among complete strangers is possible, we can certainly achieve it within ourselves.

And I’ll leave you with this little gem that I found written that day:

“He said imagine there’s no country (sic). It’s always hard to do. But look at this wall and you’ll realize that’s possible. Love is around.”

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