Happy New Year, everyone! This is the time when a lot of energy is spent on making resolutions, most of which we don’t manage to keep. So, this year, especially given recent tragic events, I propose a different kind of resolution.
Will you join me in resolving to create a year of peace?
Peace begins inside yourself. When you can remain calm even though things are not going well, or someone is being annoying, or you’ve been severely disappointed, you’re beginning to create a more peaceful world. When you can be kind, caring and walk away from things and people that are upsetting; rather than challenging, being defensive or getting even; you’re creating peace where there might have been conflict. When you spend some time relaxing, meditating, cuddling up or doing what you love, you’re creating a mental and physical experience of peace that lowers your blood pressure, reduces your stress, heals your body, and opens your creativity.
When inner peace reigns, it spreads outward from yourself to your friends and family; and even strangers. Your calm and caring interior creates “vibes” that are soothing and comforting to those around you.
If you can smile at the grocery cashier after the previous customer was cranky, or touch your dear one’s hand when things get edgy, or call a friend who’s going through a struggle just to say you understand; you’re creating a more peaceful family and community.
Peaceful communities work together to accept and help each other. When neighbors rally to bring food and medicine to a friend who is ill; when we all work together to fix a local problem or pass some beneficial community laws, or just say a friendly “Hi” or pass the time of day with our neighbors; we’re creating a more trusting and peaceful society.
When we take care to make thoughtful political choices, with an eye to what is good for our neighbors as well as ourselves, and consideration for the future as well as today; in response to reasoned thinking rather than reaction to agitated commercials, we are creating a more peaceful world. When we follow the old precept to ‘think globally; act locally’ we’re creating conditions for world peace and prosperity.
Happiness is not so much getting what we want as it is acting and thinking in ways that nurture connections and harmony. Within the nurturing environment we create, love and happiness can flow and grow.
The Shape of Peace
How shall we know when peace is here to stay?
How can we grow in peaceful, loving ways?
When will the struggle be transformed into the dance?
Can faith be strong enough to take the chance?
Chorus: Hold out your hand and touch the shape of peace And side by side we’ll watch the struggle cease
The Hand of God will touch and heal the breach When we are one, when we have learned
The shape of peace
The shape of peace is in the silent stars
That dance in time to Power beyond ours
We can’t escape, we cannot shout it down
After the battle, the silence is profound.