We loved seeing so many powerful, passionate, and hard-working women and men at this year’s Social Good Summit. Our round-up series highlights moments that moved us as part of our UN Week coverage.
When the world gathers during occasions like UN week, there is conversation on topics universal to all of us: love, peace, progress, forgiveness and reconciliation.
Rarely though, are they as powerful and moving as a discussion at the Social Good Summit, Beyond Right and Wrong. The panelists shared deeply personal moments in their journeys from war to anger to peace and forgiveness, in a conversation moderated by Aaron Sherinian (VP of Communications and Public Relations for the United Nations Foundation). Their experiences are shared in a powerful documentary, Beyond Right and Wrong: Stories of Justice and Forgiveness.
Lekha Singh, a fine-art photographer and the director and producer of the film, says she was motivated by what happens when human beings go through horrible things, and how they reach a place of forgiving but not forgetting.
A few of the people featured in the film joined the panel to share their experiences. Rami Elhanan , Robi Damelin and Bassam Aramin expressed their vision for peace among individuals, within communities, and between countries. They also discussed what it means to ‘take sides.’ Their emphatic recommendation to reach solutions to important problems before 2030, is for people, communities and countries to move beyond tolerating differences, and toward embracing them.
Robi Damelin shared a definition of forgiveness she learned from a woman in South Africa. “Forgiving is giving up your just right for revenge.”
Lekha Singh is inspired by what she has seen and is an optimist, “In the darkest places and in the darkest moments you see the most light.” Remi Elhanan adds, “The pain is so deep that it’s very easy to sink down and die. But when you see this light in the dark, you get the courage and the power and energy to go on.” Bassam Aramin sums up the power of this group, “ We know how to use our pain in a positive way.”
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Watch the video of the panel discussion, including powerful clips from the film and this post stage interview. You can learn more about the documentary or watch the whole film Beyond Right and Wrong: Stories of Justice and Forgiveness for free here.
Photo credit: Stuart Ramson for United Nations Foundation