International Day of Peace

Happy International Peace Day everybody!

“……. ??? …… oh yeah… I didn’t… well… Happy Peace Day to you too!”

When I congratulated my friends, colleagues and family with International Peace day the above summarizes the overall reaction I received.

When we talk about peace everybody agrees that it is a very important theme and that we all should strive to create and maintain a world where peace is the norm and not the exception.

Funny enough the International Day of Peace was brought to life in 1982 by the United Nations. However, if you look at who are the member countries of the UN, peace might be the last thing that comes to mind. Even on Peace Day itself, UN countries talked about how to stop war with war. How to stop armies with armies. And how to stop terror with terror.

But do we actually want peace? Is peace a part of our human nature? When we look around us one clearly sees that peace is not something we prioritize in everyday life. There is always a country at war somewhere on the planet. Or one country is threatening another. But also on a corporate level, there is little peace. There is a constant competition between companies, there is spying going on between nations but also between corporations. And even on a smaller scale, we seem to be in constant competition. Siblings fight over toys, the TV-screen or the tablet. Teenagers are in competition about the brand of clothes they use etc. etc. Now also at school, we see more and more that kids are in constant battle with each other and even themselves when it comes to how they do at school. These forms of competition aren’t healthy when they continue over a very long time. It makes that we are in constant fight or flight mode. However, this way of living seems to be the only way we are able to survive in our current world society. The world economic system is even based on this type of competition. It’s quite remarkable that we all agreed to live in this way don’t you think?

One way or another we really want peace not only for the world as a whole but also peace for ourselves and in our hearts. It’s with this peace we heal ourselves and each other. It’s this peace that promotes love, compassion and understanding. Peace truly is our nature.

But at one point we decided that we were separate from the world around us, that we are separate from nature and that what we do to the world around us, therefore, cannot affect us. It is at that point we started to not only drift away from nature, but also from our own nature. We are no longer ourselves, and we have enslaved ourselves to a system based on exploitation, greed, and constant competition. And we are now getting clear evidence that we are getting into bigger and bigger disagreement with our dear Mother Earth who is reacting to the abuse we have given her the past decades. Ultimately we cannot survive as a humanity that is not based around the concept of natural wholeness, oneness and the concept of natural cooperation.

So we end up with a dilemma where we want peace, not only in the world but also in our own hearts, at the same time we are maintaining a system around us where it gets increasingly difficult to live in peace. The war on natural recourses has been set in motion many years ago and if we continue to exploit our Mother Earth the way we do there is no peace in sight.

The Dalai Lama is absolutely correct when he states that we should not let our inner peace be destroyed. It all starts inside of us. The more people have and maintain inner peace, the more people are actually working on creating peace.

Creating inner peace liberates us from the constant fight or flight mode. When our fight or flight mode is switched off, our mind gets the possibility to be creative. When we are creative we are able to create the solutions to solve the problems we face. With our fight or flight mode switched off we are more open to cooperation. When we are more open to cooperation we create solutions to solve problems in a more effective and peaceful way. By coming together with inner peace and without fear we create a peaceful world.

Where to start? Where can I get this inner peace? What does it cost? Inner peace is not something you buy from the supermarket shelves. Inner peace is something you create within yourself and it is free of charge. Peace is an inside job. It can easily be obtained by practising meditation. To celebrate International Peace Day our meditation group will not talk about ending wars by bombing whole countries, we will not talk about ending suffering by creating more suffering. We will be gathering this Sunday to create an intense feeling of peace and happiness inside our bodies, in order to radiate this peace out into the world together with many others around the globe that have joined the unify world peace day movement to do something for peace this weekend.

Peace within is where it all begins.

Love & Light – Seb