We all have plenty of ideas of what peace is not…
Spend some time reading the words above and observe how they make you feel. What’s happening in your body? What images does it bring to your memory? What stories do these words remind you of?
And yet, we know this. We know war and disasters and terrorism are bad and they make us feel bad. Yet what’s the solution? Isn’t death and destruction a natural part of life? How can we live in a world with such horrors and not be overwhelmed by them? I have a couple of suggestions:
#1: We can begin by simply observing the qualities of peace. My first suggestion would be to take notice of your breath. The video below is a beautiful meditation, try it out for two minutes and then take my poll below to observe how you feel. What’s different from how you felt after reviewing the earlier word collages?
#2: Are you as curious about peace as you are of conflict? Is creativity, compassion and collaboration as entertaining to you as violence, conspiracy and grief? If given the choice, do you opt to watch films or television shows that have a core message of violence or do you listen and observe visual arts based in hope? Do you seek out stories of goodwill in the news, or observe only those that reinforce your perception of a distrusting world? If you sense the desire to have more peace in your life, you must choose it in very real concrete ways. How you entertain yourself is a great area to start.
#3: How can you identify peace in those every-day moments of life? How do we know what peace is, even when it is staring us in the face? Below is a word collage of peace, I invite you to reflect on the words that bring a smile to your face, a beautiful image to your mind or a memory that warms your heart. That is peace.