June 5, 2022: Sweet Peace
This week brought a whole new onslaught of heartbreaking news from mass shootings to the war in Ukraine. Inspired by a heartfelt wish for peace in today’s tumultuous world, Silversmith Ron created a one-of-a-kind, two-sided pendant this week, he named Sweet Peace*. In researching symbols for the alternate side, Ron chose a dove and a feather. For centuries and across cultures, the dove has represented both a sense of innocence and peace. The feather has many meanings, the most powerful of which is freedom, honor, power, strength, trust, and wisdom. Can you just imagine our world, if we celebrated and practiced all of these states of being?
The desire for peace, whether it’s within ourselves, our family, our community or in the world, can seem daunting when so much of the ravages of poverty, illness and violence seems to be occurring daily. How can one person make a difference?
“Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy and serenity.”—Thich Nhat Hanh
Each one of us has our own ways of coping with daily stress and finding a sense of calm. We can take the time to press the “pause button” and create some quiet time where we can observe our emotions and reflect on what actions we can take as individuals, to build a more peaceful life for ourselves and others.
“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.”—Eleanor Roosevelt
Peace in the world, begins first of all with peace within our selves. When we are living in harmony, we can respect and love each other, irregardless of our cultural, physical, religious, or political differences. Getting angry and frustrated at the behaviors of others creates inner conflict, which can lead to a sense of fear, helplessness, intolerance and even forms of violence. We can’t change the behaviors of others, but we can make changes and commitments in our own lives to make a difference.
“Peace is a daily, a weekly, a monthly process, gradually changing opinions, slowly eroding old barriers, quietly building new structures.”—John F. Kennedy
A Pathway to Peace
1. Create a sense of Inner Peace. When we’re centered and calm, the world won’t seem so overwhelming. When filled with turmoil, there are things we can do. We can take a walk in nature, breathe deeply, and also limit the amount of time we spend on social media and watching the news. We can choose to avoid violent media programs and try to spend at least 10 minutes a day in a peaceful place. Meditation, spiritual prayer, inspirational writings, music and even creating or observing art are all quiet, but powerful ways, we can incorporate into our daily lives.
“ Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.”—Albert Einstein
2. Practice acceptance, tolerance and understanding. Like many others, I have strong convictions, and it’s been a challenge accepting the actions and beliefs of others on opposing views of the political spectrum. It has been too easy to pass judgement, leading to feelings of anger and frustration. But when locked into rigid opinions, we can unwittingly evolve into exhibiting the same behaviors as the extremists we read about in the news. We can be more tolerant of others beliefs and practice compassion, kindness and understanding.
“An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.”—Mahatma Gandhi
3. Forgive and Live In the Present-When we have been hurt by others, it can disrupt our sense of calm and well-being. But living on the fuel of past hurts and regrets, takes away the joy of the moment. We can choose to lay to rest past hurts, recognize the goodness of others, creating peace in our personal relationships.
“Peace begins with a smile.”—Mother Teresa
4. Live Joyfully– We can actually change the way we view the world, byt choosing to see the beauty and wonder that is present every day. The act of actively focusing our attention on what’s amazing, beautiful and wonderful in our world, is a powerful antidote to the despair and violence we’re bombarded with on a daily basis. Creating a sense of joy will bring peace to our own lives, allowing us to see the good in others and be filled with gratitude.
Like a pebble tossed into a pond, the ripples of peace can spread out far beyond ourselves to others. We can be agents of peace, setting our intention to choose actions like compassion and kindness instead of conflict. A commitment to peace will impact our life choices, from how we spend our days, the people we spend time with, the programs and literature we watch and read, to the candidates we vote for. and organizations we support. We can make a difference!
Thank you for taking the time out of your busy life to read and reflect on our blog. We invite you to share it with someone who might find it meaningful. Here are some additional quotes on Peace and sources for further reading on peace. If you have other that inspire you, please feel free to share them.
We wish you a peaceful day.
Best regards, Wendy Oellers-Fulmer
“Peace is liberty in tranquility.”—Marcus Tullius Cicero
“Do not the let the behaviors of others disturb your inner peace”Dalai Lama
“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.”—Saint Francis de Sales
“You should feel beautiful and you should feel safe. What you surround yourself with should bring you peace of mind and peace of spirit.”—Stacy London
“Don’t search for anything except peace. Try to calm the mind. Everything else will come on its own.”—Baba Hari Das
“If you are depressed you are living in the past if you are anxious you are living in the future, if you are at peace, you are living in the present.”—Lao Tzu
“The life of inner peace, being harmonious and without stress, is the easiest type of existence.”—Norman Vincent Peale
“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”—Desmond Tutu
Source for More Reading on Peace: https://www.peace-ed-campaign.org/ten-practical-ways-to-build-peace-in-your-life-and-in-the-world-around-you/
*Sweet Peace Necklace has been sold
June 5, 2022
Excellent posting today, Wendy!
I want to share something I just copied out to keep on my desk from a book by Sandy Gingras called “how to live at the beach” :
“The beach is not as much about slackness of mind (although there is some good in that) as it is about mindfulness to small and simple things.”
An excellent reminder during this times of so much hate and anger and fear. Its a way to rise above despair.
June 5, 2022
Thanks so much for reading our blog and responding with such a meaningful quote. I truly believe that we can get so overwhelmed by all the anger, fear and hate that we lose the opportunities to appreciate all of the small wonders in our lives. I love the part of the quote that refers to mindfulness to small and simple things. When we set our attention to be aware, it is a powerful and positive way to open the door to joy.