There is a lot going on the world and so much technology to shove it in our faces that it actually requires a conscious effort to remain calm. In my mind, it is healthy to feel incredible sadness over the devastation in Haiti; mind boggling fear over the health of our planet and the obvious symptoms that are appearing all over the world; uncomfortable shame for the way we turn our back on the less fortunate while we throw hundreds of dollars at designer "this and thats"; incredible anxiety over the state of our education system and the epidemic of special needs children that are without resources to assist them (and their parent's) in mainstreaming into society; and completely cluelessness as to why our jails and institutions are bulging at the seams with addicts and alcoholics yet addiction awareness and treatment are still unobtainable for so many.
Of course the list can go on and on but that is not the point of this blog entry. With all these extremes going on all around us, peace has to become a priority. Whether it is peace between foes or political parties or neighbors or siblings or husband and wife, it needs to be the obvious first option when there is strife.
I have lived much of my life ready to retaliate if injured. If you take something of mine or hurt me, I am gonna get ya' so I can save face and feel in control. Maybe not with an axe or slander, but you are on my list and when the time is right...I'll make my move. Most of the time, I have gotten annoyed with something else or realized that it was a mistake or just gotten bored and nothing much came from my impending wrath, but mending fences was never a part of my diabolical plan. Rather, knowledge that I could be poised to strike was my best coping mechanism.
Yes, instead I stored the hurt, disappointment, or embarrassment in my database to stew on whenever I was already mad or feeling alone in the world. "I showed you! " Wait, no I didn't...I'm the only one who lost in that battle because it compounded whatever bad feeling I was having by 10 fold. So the not-so-obvious conclusion is that before we can make peace in the world we have to make peace within ourselves. That's right friends, we've got to love ourselves first...even though we know all about everything we've been up to (or even thought about doing.) Oh dear, not an easy task indeed.
How many of us have not thought about yelling at an elderly person moving in slow motion when you are in a hurry or punching your partner in the nose after they said something rude to you? And all our nasty, dirty, mean thoughts are also kept in the database...thus it is inevitable that as you get older, that database becomes filled with darkness even if your life has been filled with light.
Somehow, someway, we have to find a means to brighten our inner world so that we can share that light with others. Peace has to be a priority. Yes, even more important than that promotion, relationship or weight loss program. If these things interfere with having peace..toss them!! When you set your goals, add peace to the equation. Take 10 seconds to ask yourself, "Will this task, commitment, person, choice add peace to my life or is the inevitable outcome more stress and negative talk?"
It's a dandy of a strategy and if you are able to incorporate it into your living you might actually be able to change the world for the better. I don't know about you, but just being happy isn't enough motivation to stop dipping into the darkness to cope with life. In theory, it sounds nice and juicy but actually applying it, well there would need to be a cash prize or at least public accolades. "Hmmmmmm.... changing the world...that sounds like an important job for my secret megalomaniac subconscious... I might be interested in filling that position. Sure why not...."
So now when my neighbor's dog barks all night or there is a person in the 10 or less line with 11 items, instead of pooling from my previous frustrations to armor my agitation, I'll focus on my gratitude and blessings and how I am going to change the world by letting go of the pettiness and embracing the greater good.
At some point, you might think, "I'm not sure I have time to save the world today...getting pissed is much more time efficient."
No, no no...this job cannot become a burden because that defeats the purpose... It has to start at the molecular level and that takes just a few seconds. "I am here in my body, feeling gratitude for the oxygen I breath and the sun in the sky" and oddly enough, one begins to experience peace.
"I fill my heart with light and let go of the junk, the toxic righteousness and anger."
Then I remove myself from the situation either physically or emotionally and connect with a higher purpose. "Oh...that's nice. i can feel it...I have peace" ...and no longer does the irritation that I was experiencing have power over my decisions and experiences in that moment. Next, the butterfly effect goes into motion and in your own small way, you made the world a better place.
I know, I know, it has been said before and I'm sure all of this will be said again, but if even one person reading this applies it to a situation sometime today and that situation has a positive outcome, that positiveness will spread to others and so on and so on. I guess this long winded rant is just my little way of saving the world today.