Wednesday, May 2, 2018
No one can ever live in a PLACE of peace, I have decided. The world is too chaotic and loud. The trick is to find that sanctuary inside yourself where you can cultivate and immerse yourself in peace. Easy to type, not always so easy to do. It takes discipline, it takes practice and it takes a willingness to forego all the things you think you know about yourself and the world. If we are lucky, we get to live in quieter places, like I do. That makes it easier.
The ancient Indian ideal of Ahimsa hands us that on a platter. A basic practice of non-violence, it becomes a guiding force of reverence for life. Transformation of me is necessary for transformation of the world. "Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me..." words to a spiritual song that tells us as citizens of the world we must cultivate peace in our own hearts if we want to "...be the change we wish to see in the world" as Gandhi taught. So many words of wisdom can be found around us...our job is to pick them up and find the one that fits us. Of course, that's only IF we are seeking peace and serenity. I know people who have no problem with the crazy life they lead. The drama, the hatefulness, the chaos. It makes me tired... it hurts my heart.
I have a list of suggestions to help me practice a discipline of peacefulness that I read every morning. It breaks it down into each day of the week one simple suggestion. Today is Wednesday. For today I get:
WEDNESDAY: Speaking For Peace.
Today, the purpose of speaking is to create happiness in the listener. Have this intention- TODAY, EVERY WORD I UTTER WILL BE CHOSEN CONSCIOUSLY. I will refrain from complaints, condemnation and criticism.
Easy enough to do (maybe??) when I'm at home here on Honeysuckle Hill by myself. How will I do out in the world ? Can I slow myself down enough to even process what's getting ready to come out of my mouth ? Practicing mindfulness certainly helps. And practicing watching my words as they swirl around in this cabbagehead of mine helps too. BEFORE they come rushing out the gate. lol Most people, I find, do not usually have the intention of hurting other people. And yet over and over we do... unconsciously perhaps, because we are ego driven and un-mindful, When all I think about is me, I ignore the effects my words and actions (however seemingly insignificant) have on others. Decades ago, someone made a comment about how sarcastic I was. Then they said-- do you know that the root of the word Sarcasm means to tear flesh ? That every time you are sarcastic with someone to show your superiority, you are chewing them up, tearing them down. I was shocked. I remember sputtering that I wasn't sarcastic because it made me look smarter, better, quicker...but because I was witty, funny. I'm pretty funny... and the more I thought about it the sicker I got. It was true... and I have made a practice to watch that ever since. It still creeps in sometimes and I still get some pleasure out of it. But for the most part, the idea of belittling someone else in that way does not serve the woman I am today. Thank Goodness.
SO, for today, in search of peace in my heart and peace in my world, I will carefully choose to speak words of peace, words of uplifting, words of assurance. I will remember that As With in/As With out. I will hum the words Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me. And it will be a good day.