People often tell me that I am doing too many things, and too many different things. Well, all my work is focused on one life project: world peace. Imagine me as a contestant in a beauty pageant responding to the question, “What do you think is most needed today?” I could see myself saying, “World peace.”
Here’s the deal: in order to have world peace, there must be a critical mass of people, including social, political, and spiritual leaders who have inner peace. There can be no world peace without inner peace. And in order to have inner peace, there must be a critical mass of folks who know that they are loved unconditionally.
Inner peace is essential to world peace for a few reasons. Without inner peace, individuals and groups are likely to perceive the actions and words of others through the filters of fear, distrust, anger, and hurt. Without cultivating inner peace, all of us – individuals, groups, and governments – are more likely to make decisions based on knee-jerk reaction after experiencing any kind of offense, injustice or violation from others. The knee-jerk reactions usually result in escalating one offense to another until a vicious cycle of offenses spirals out of control into family feuds, inter-group conflicts, and wars between tribes and nations.
So how do we achieve and live in inner peace? Knowing and experiencing unconditional love. Most of us have never experienced unconditional love. Not in our religious communities, not in our families. As a result, we keep striving either to do things that we think will help us get the love we seek or to self-protect ourselves from hurt. Both strivings yield stress and anxiety that run counter to inner peace. Knowing that we are loved unconditionally by God is the pathway to inner peace.
Because many religions focus on judgment, sin, and the ways that we fall short, many of us have been led away from the truth that Apostle Paul writes about that “there is nothing in all creation that can separate us from the love of God.” As we know this truth and live in it, we can live in peace and be brokers of peace in the world.
May our hearts sing: “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.”
When you read my blog posts, please send your comments and I will be glad to respond. Peace, CJ