Inner peace is where it all begins

A Note From Dr. Beverly Nelson, Director

Yesterday, the world united in celebration of World Peace Day.

Dr. Beverly Nelson (Photo: Michael Amici)Peace is often thought of as the product of community effort: the result of a group of people working together in order to achieve a state of harmony, balance and love. How often do we hear the word ‘peace’ used in such a context, whether it’s mentioned in the news or in the latest beauty pageant?

However, and before tackling the enormous and noble task that is to achieve world peace, we must focus on achieving inner peace first.

What is your personal definition of peace? Is it a permanent state of mind? Is it a moral topic? Perhaps it’s a combination of both? Perhaps your personal definition of peace includes love, good health, abundance; and the same things for your loved ones. Or, perhaps it only contemplates how you interact with the rest of the world. Write down your thoughts and, as you go along, think if there is something that you would like to add to your personal vision of peace.

Does your idea of peace imply a specific setting, made up of certain physical conditions of our surroundings? Maybe you envision peace as a quiet cabin in the woods, near a little stream that gently murmurs as it passes on its way to the nearest lake. Maybe peace is a conscious neighbor who never makes noise past your bedtime, thus allowing for great sleep every night. Perhaps it’s a city where traffic is non-existent. Your ‘peace’ may be an afternoon of pleasant reading, snuggled up in your favorite sofa…You get the idea.

Each one of us has their own personal vision of a peaceful life. What happens when we interact with other people, who have their own ideas of what peace is? It is rare that we can all agree; most times, we try very hard to have our own views prevail. Our particular views of life may not directly alter, say, the situation in Syria; however, the only way to ever start the road to common understanding and lasting world peace is to analyze, in honesty, how we may be contributing to the chaos; and to take actions to make sure that our lives are truly rooted in love, and in peace.

Remember: all it takes is one person with the will to make it happen. And, we can all be that person!

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