Jan is a beautiful person. He looks through his little glasses the world that so usually makes him smile, with such tender smile that you’d keep looking. His thoughts are like his glasses: he only speaks a lot about things he spent a time thinking. In contrast, for the casual conversations, he’s a young guy who uses few words to speak.
Jan is Polish, and he has been this week in Nizhny Novgorod, with a very diverse group of young Russians, Ukranian, Spanish, Greeks, Georgians, Armenians, Italians, German…
We had sessions every day where people would share their thoughts, their experiences without any mediation. We spoke about propaganda with Yegor, and Olga, and Natasha and Vlad and many others.
We spoke and analysed on the image of the enemy, and we compare it to the friendship that is growing among them. Yegor dares to speak up impolite thoughts and to express his anger. But he does it with, from respect. Olga shares her suffering to speak about existing hatred, between friends, between brothers and aunts. But stays and keeps speaking.
Jan is a beautiful person and even if he looks at reality with his own glasses, he observes, he is patient, he smiles. And he’s serious.
In the round circle that gathered them tonight, they discuss with Aleksandr about the proposals they elaborated in order to contribute to peace, by increasing dialogue between people, by spending time together as a great medicine against propaganda: they think about a youth voluntary camp in Russia and in Ukraine; of football tournaments with mixed nationalities; about Humans from Donetsk…
I imagine as if Jan had screens on his glasses, as if they would show horrible stories about the young guys who are now becoming his friends, and if such stories would be in front of him while he was assisting to this youth conversations. He would see Vlad as a materialist (instead of as the delicate and firm person I see), Olga as an imperialist, Yegor as… But he does not. His glasses are clean.
He looks through and makes his thoughts while he smiles and listens and proposes. He shakes hands, hugs and he jokes. Young people with young people. Humans with humans, they talk together, think together, they use honesty and hope.
They may remember forever the way they have been watching to each others’ eyes these days. And in those eyes, in those words, we, and they, will find the seeds for peace.
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