The Canna Project / Riho Tachibana
On March 11, 2011, the unprecedented disaster struck the North East part of Japan. People all over the world immediately gave support to us and we are very thankful today to those across the borders who reached us and helped us.
We had experienced the same kind of calamity and the scene of suffering before. On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima was struck by the atomic bomb. After a month, there came a miracle. A flower was found on the ground zero in Hiroshima bombing, a flower of crimson beauty, Canna. The flower gave the courage and hope of live to the people in Hiroshima.
The phrase for this flower is "the steady future."
In the summer of 2011, children of Hiroshima sent the Canna flowers to the disaster area of North East Japan. The children could not help but think of the people in the disaster area. And the children of the North East thought of Hiroshima. If something happened in Hiroshima, then we will go to help, they decided,
The same Canna flower was then sent all the way to the Pope in Vatican. The canna was also sent to the Hanoi international school of U.N. in Vietnam and it blossomed to the eyes of the children from 66 nations studying there.
The crimson Canna blossomed in 10 countries so far. It has connected the hearts of thousands who think of each other and give to each other. We believe the peace of the world can be achieved somehow by the people who think of each other, by the people who understand and accept others. The crimson Canna can be the link to those people across the borders.
There is a saying in Japan about the flower blossoming. It is also said that the Smile of flowers. A flower smiles, we say in Japanese. The crimson Canna has given the smiles to the people who see it.
Smiles are given free. Smiles cannot be withered after giving away. They give hope to those in despair. The smile of the Canna, the smile of flower, blossomed in Hiroshima after a month the atomic bomb struck was the courage and the hope itself to the people would live there.
"Let's make the Canna a link to the people of the world and let it blossom to the peace and hope" -- This is a motto of the Canna Project.
The Canna flower in the disaster area withered in autumn. But the people kept smiling and the smiles multiply.
We call them "The Canna smiles." This project started on October 20, 2011 and it gave 1000 smiling faces in three weeks.
2000 canna smiles were counted in March, 2012.
3000 canna smiles were counted in May, 2012.
4000 canna smiles were counted in December, 2012.
5000 canna smiles were counted in February, 2013.
6000 canna smiles were counted in July, 2013.
7000 canna smiles were counted in March,2014.
And the smiling faces were given from 100 countries (66 countries from the U.N. school and 23 from NY and others). Their Canna smiles have fulfilled our hearts. With Canna smiles, each other is accepted and understood. To think about each other is the first one step to the peace.
A smile is always free. It can't be withered after giving away.
It fulfills the hearts of the people. It gives courage. It gives hope.
The one who receives a Canna smile would give it to someone else.
A flower smiles, we say in Japanese. Let Canna smiles spread all over the world !
"Let's make the flower of peace and hope blossom to the hearts of millions of the world !"
- 橘 凛保
- （東京都 / マナー講師）
- 社団法人橘流恕学アカデミー 理事長 講師
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