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World Handshake Day

When Ivan Župa was a child living near the city of Split, along the Adriatic Sea in Croatia, a wise man on the seashore told him, "My son, place your hand here in the sea and you are united with the whole world." Župa, who went on to become an Austrian journalist, created World Handshake Day decades later to preserve and pass on the man's philosophy and vision. Župa said, "Place your hand in the sea and shake hands with the whole world, feel united. By demonstrating this simple gesture of shaking our hands, we can help fulfil the vision of many nations as well as of the old wise man." The goal of the day is "the global connection of all people and the symbolic transfer of love, gratitude, and positive energy to mother earth and all its living beings." Family and friends go to the sea—and to other bodies of water, like rivers and streams—and place in their hands to "feel connected to all in love and peace."

How to Observe World Handshake Day

Head to the sea or to another body of water—preferably one that is connected to one or more other bodies of water—and place your hands in it, to shake hands with others figuratively, be united with them, and transfer love, gratitude, and positive energy to them. With water, you can shake hands with the whole world at once, but you could also shake hands with people individually today, and pass on the same sentiments of love and gratitude. If you so desire, you could connect with others digitally at the official Facebook group as well.

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