Pent up inside,
The magma of emotions,
Burst onto the world,
Charring everything in sight,
Dispersing a melancholy of life.
The shockwaves go shuddering down to the very core of our existence.
Shaken, stirred and poured all over.
In that moment the mind believes, C’est la vie.
And the vicious cycle continues.
Not the prettiest picture painted, making one wonder, is this truly our existence every day? Let your sight wander, what do you behold? A rushed parent is dashing, the distance to the school, work and home, an agitated man driving and dishing out a few wonderful words to anyone who dare cross him, then there’s that old man who nobody says a kind word to anymore, scowling at the happy kids skipping. And further up is that woman just walking about without a care, not looking at what she is stepping over or knocking over and if you stop her, there’s no telling what your ears may have to suffer. We are these mini volcanoes waiting to erupt at the slightest provocation.
Why is it so easy to roar yet a struggle to be mellow?
Why are the turbulent waters always within reach yet the placid waters a distant vision?
Why do we complicate our lives by reacting instead of simplifying it with ignoring the drama and moving on?
Why does the search for serenity begin only in far flung exotic isles, when it actually could be within easy reach?
Peace. You can spend a lifetime searching for it and yet you will not find it, but it really is there, waiting for you to perchance upon it right there.
Throughout history, a quest that has met with moderate success has been the quest for Peace. From religion to philosophy to sociology to warfare, the quest for peace has remained a common theme. From symbolism, culture, fads to treaties, there’s something to dedicate to peace. Today peace comes under a whole domain area of knowledge to be studied along with its partner-conflict. The two together are keeping each other alive like a symbiotic relationship, where there’s conflict you want peace, when there is peace for too long, conflict feels left out. Long term existence seems inevitable. So it made me wonder why is that Peace is so hard to achieve?
We live in turbulent times, North, South, East or West, there’s hardly a place with no conflict that is sneakily ousting the days of peace. The Utopia of a peaceful world that was probably envisaged by the previous generation is edging closer each day into a nightmare version of it. We are edgy, anxious, materialistic, selfish, stingy, impatient, insensitive, negligent, cynical, and agnostic far more than ever before.
This “volatile cocktail of emotions” is that which fuels the unethical plans of the truly wicked elements of the society, whose only goal is to ensure peace can never prevail. The more conflict, the more the wicked elements flourish, while we the commoners suffer. The business of the powerful thrives on the lives of the ordinary who are petrified of the thoughts of having their routines being disrupted. This fear is slowly piece by piece taking away the “Peace” of our lives and in due process of the world.
And thus we are rapidly bidding adieu to the idea of World Peace in the Concorde. It crash lands or lands in the middle of the “Pacific” it couldn’t bother us anymore. It’s not the most agreeable notions to conjure, however as this thought does tinker the grey cells, a rather perplexing conclusion arises. When “Our” individual souls aren’t at peace, how can the world find peace? After all, ‘We are the World’. It’s when the inner circle is all about peace, does the ripple effect work its wonders and spread that peace everywhere it touches. The shackles which hold us back, which tie our souls to a selfish thought process can be broken. The mindlessness of just living can be altered to living with a purpose. And that purpose of living doesn’t have the painted with the paintbrush called ego. We are all capable of being in harmony with nature’s wonderful spectrum of seven. And when the sight beholds the rewards of that harmony, it will make you want to do more, be more and add that extra sparkle to your individual hue. Fairness and equality seem to be a thing of the past, its all about “me , me and some more me”. Even though its about “me”, that me is not at peace. Perhaps it could be that the “Me” moment has been achieved by stealth and thus the uneasiness.
It is pretty much a straight-forward process to find that peace again, provided you make the intention to find and stick with it. Almost every major religion of the world encourages the attainment of peace, yet the masses struggle. While some take a dramatic take on achieving it by renouncing the world, I found something simpler stemming from the values I’ve grown up with.
In Islam, one of the attributes used to define God is the Arabic word, As-Salaam-The Giver and source of Peace, the Perfection. In fact, the word Islam itself is derived from the word Salaam, and means submission in peace. Think about it, if you are at peace, you are in “perfection”, what more could you desire if you’ve found peace?! After all, this is what we spend our entire lifetime in pursuit of…that one moment of peace to last a lifetime perhaps. Taking “Peace” further, the Islamic greeting is “AsSalaamualaikum”, “May peace be on you”. Numerous times a day this greeting is exchanged around, yet we are so far from this peace. The Holy book Qur’an, even talks about hearts finding peace and contentment in the remembrance of God, yet how little do we remember!
We sing, sob and shout out about World Peace occasionally because it is fashionable and the world would like us to believe that, it is their agenda, yet it is like that fleeting mirage in the hot desert, nearly within grasp, but disappears when we get up close.
So is our modern lifestyle making peace unattainable? Do we give up our pursuit of peace because it is complicated or perhaps you need to be a “Goody two shoes”?
Of course not! At the end of the day you do want to be able to lie in peace in your bed, so let’s just try a little bit more. Our modern lifestyles of hurry and doing more are not just compounding our wealth, so are our health issues. And interestingly most of them are linked to high levels of stress which is an absence of…you guessed it, peace!
Peace is to our Souls like Oxygen is to breathing, where our Survival is linked to the inhalation and exhalation. This is what Peace has to the potential to do and does.
Stay tuned for Part-II, which delves into easy ways to bring back the peace.