When I look at the problems our world faces today, I am overwhelmed and hopeless.
How do we solve the Middle East?
How do live in true racial equality?
How do we share our planet’s resources justly?
Sure, people have opinions about these topics, but how often are they expressed in a self-righteous tone that doesn’t sound anything like peace? Implementing the deep and abiding changes necessary for world peace seems like a pie-in-the-sky fantasy. Usually we just settle for whatever steps our leaders take towards something positive-ish, and kick the can down the timeline for the next generation.
We can agree that we want peace, but the real question is: do we actually believe it is possible?
On the pragmatic level, the world is a complicated mess. There are no easy answers to the problems we face. But there is another level where we can go to seek answers and create them. The spiritual level. Once we begin operating on this plane, the field of all possibilities opens up and peace becomes not only possible, but present and real.
Have I lost you yet?
I hope not. Spirituality is rooted in truth and available to everyone, whether or not you have faith. Let’s not get lost in language.
The most profound lesson I have ever learned from yoga is that there is an absolute connection between our physical and ephemeral realities. Strength is strength. When you make your body strong, your spirit strengthens too. When you increase the flexibility of your body, you also increase the flexibility of your thinking. When you practice standing in balance, you learn how to balance your life. Incrementally, of course. But surely.
Yoga practice is a conversation with your spirit. When you are living a hectic, unbalanced life, you will notice that you fall out of your balancing postures quickly. As you practice focusing, being still and steady, and embodying a posture of balance, your mind takes a cue from your practice. It becomes easier to allow space to balance the different aspects of your life. It’s true with all the qualities of yoga. If you feel meek, assume the posture of a warrior to access your strength. If you need to open your heart, literally open it with a backbend. It’s amazing to experience these connections.
This is where peace comes in.
Many people come to yoga and meditation in search of inner peace. We crave calm and seek meaning. That search is noble. Not only does cultivating inner peace take care of you, but it also contributes to increasing peace in the world on an energetic level. You are an integral part of the world. Your peace or suffering contribute to the collective. There are 800 monks in the Midwest who spend 8 hours a day meditating for world peace. How astonishing and inspirational!
Most of us live pretty small lives.
It’s easy to feel unheard or incapable of making an important contribution to the world. And yet… just a few minutes of silence can transform your experience of your day. Meditation can ground you and uplift you at once. This is how we grow peace. We nurture it and foster it within ourselves until it radiates outward.
Peace is peace. Let’s share it.