50 Years Ago Today

October 21, 1967. We’d just come off the Summer of Love, during which my buddy Marc and I had futilely searched for a “love in.” I was enamored with the peace symbol, with the phrase “make love, not war,” with the placing of flowers in soldiers’ rifles (preferably by pretty blondes with daisy chains in their hair). I wasn’t sure how to get to this mystical place called Peace, but I desperately wanted to be there. I sensed that the hippie movement hadn’t found it, that they were only chanting about it. LBJ didn’t have the answer, but neither did Ho Chi Minh. Still, the peace movement was something. And something was better than nothing, right?

When I heard about the marches–50,000 at the Pentagon and 100,000 in Washington, DC, with echoes in Europe and the UK–I wanted to ride that wave, instead of floating in the brackish backwater of my suburban high school. But peace, real peace, wasn’t born in 1967. Only futility. In Vietnam. In America. On earth.

Real peace, I finally found out, the Prince of Peace, was born in a town called Bethlehem.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” ~John 14:27

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in Culture, For Pastors and Teachers, Memoir, Religion/Faith and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to 50 Years Ago Today

  1. schoen55 says:

    Mitch this is awesome. Having grown up in the hippy generation, and nightly accountings of the deaths in Vietnam, your post resonated with me. Truly, Peace began way before we put flowers in our hair, and made peace signs. It was living and breathing amongst us. And through the Holy Spirit, an us it still is. Blessings,

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! I remember those days so very well. Glad you have found real peace in Jesus.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You are about my brother’s age, it seems. I’m a few years behind you, and so I did not participate but watched, with curiosity as my brother pursued the hippie movement. We lived in the San Fran Bay area at the time. This is a beautiful post, Mitch. As always.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. cigarman501 says:

    Awesome man. I was seventeen and much more a hippy Jesus follower now than I was then. Peace man.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I was only 1 month and 4 days old at that time. My only concerns were glass baby bottles and the big pins that my mom used to hold my cloth diapers together. I coined the phrase, “Make poop, not poke.”

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jennie says:

    Yes, the Prince of Peace. We all need to remember His nickname and his mission.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Francina says:

    Thank you for bringing back those memories, Mitch . It might not have worked out the way we hoped for in those days , at least we tried. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. pastorpete51 says:

    Reblogged this on praise2worshipdotnet and commented:
    Sounds a lot like my own East coast teenage years and brings me back memories of the 1968 Newport Jazz festival. Only in being found by the Prince of peace did I find my way home.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Amen. I think someone must have burned something, because my eyes just got all irritated and watery. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Roos Ruse says:

    Excellent post, Mitch. Only it can’t have been 50 years. That’s a lifetime ago and I’m just getting started!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. gpavants says:

    Hi Mitch,

    History reminds me that the Lord is working in lives and moving people closer to Him. It might take a war, or trouble, but that change is good.



    Liked by 1 person

  12. numrhood says:

    mitch, can you explain of the year 61, since you mentioned 67?

    son of god, prophesy against thee and say: ‘this is what the sovereign lord says: i am against you, chief prince of meshek & tubal. i will turn you around and drag you along. i will bring you from the far north and send you against the mountains of israel. then I will strike your bow from your left hand and make your arrows drop from your right hand. on the mountains of israel you will fall, you and all your troops and the nations with you. i will give you as food to all kinds of carrion birds and to the wild about animals. john 39:52


  13. toutparmoi says:

    Heady days. I can’t agree with you about futility, though. I visited the USA in the early 1970s and was struck by the wonderful sense of fellow-feeling among all I met there. Not only young Americans, but youngsters (as I see us now) from all parts of the world.

    Wearing our international youth uniform of tie-dyed T-shirts, and tatty jeans. Riding around on Greyhound Buses. Staying at YMs. Working hard to communicate with each other, despite the language barriers. The Japanese kids struggled most, but everyone knew the international peace sign.

    Yes, we were spoiled brats. Born into booming post-war economies. Probably the best fed, best medicated, best educated (en masse) generation the world had seen.

    But we were trying for peace and international goodwill, believe me.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. numrhood says:

    mitch, can you tell me the year 61 to connect with 67


  15. Pingback: My Summer of Love | Mitch Teemley

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s