A few years ago, I stood at the base of the Martin Luther King, Jr. statue in Washington, DC and looked up at the towering figure you see above.
A flood of emotions came over me as I tried to imagine the life he led, the sacrifices he made and his dedication to justice through peaceful means.
This was a man dedicated to love.
His quote about peace is especially meaningful to me. As a serious student of A Course in Miracles, I believe the way to create a more peaceful world, is for each of us to to cultivate inner peace.
I love a quote from the Course that says, "Peace is stronger than war because it heals."
Let's dedicate this year to peace. Our purpose can be to nurture our own inner peace that then radiates to our families, communities and throughout our world. Let's allow peace to heal us.
Let's allow peace to be our goal, our path and our state of being.
Like many communities in the Unites States, my beloved Virginia has been rocked once again by multiple mass shootings this month.
Senseless. Devastating. Incomprehensible.
The reaction to such horrific events: public shock, the anguished cries of loved ones, stone faced politicians sending prayers to the affected families.
Our opportunity is to align to the Truth, not the tragedy. Let me explain.
While Americans love to say we’re guided by our ideals of freedom, I disagree. We’re thoroughly and consistently motivated by fear.
Fear of the “other” (those of opposing political views, country of origin, race, religious beliefs, gender identification, and thousands of other delineating factors).
Fear of lack or “not enough” (seen through our monstrous consumer appetite and tendency for hoarding as well as deep issues around self-love).
And the fear of aging, loneliness, fear of not making the “correct” choices around food,...
Dirty dishes, an out of sorts spouse, or a maddening series of red lights when you’re already late for an important appointment…Thich Nhat Hanh taught me these are all invitations to come back to the peace that dwells in my own heart.
And my choice is to accept that invitation.
I began to explore his work more intently as my interest in ways to live love started to blossom. I’ve particularly enjoyed the simple message in his books “Teachings on Love” and “Peace is Every Step” although there are many titles to choose from. His work has given me a deeper understanding of the power of mindfulness, deep listening, and the sacredness of each and every moment of the day.
I found his teachings on healing relationships particularly powerful. In essence, the secret is to be totally present with others. Really. Present. Not the “I’m listening to you while I just check my phone” kind of present.
Insightful. Simple. True.