I am not a religious person, especially when it comes to organized religion but I go through phases of being somewhat spiritual. Recently, I've been trying to get back to that.
The last 6 months were tough being fraught with death, loss and unwanted change. Unhappiness, suspicion and irritability became my go to emotions. I wasn't always a very nice person and could even be downright mean. Sir, who has been dealing with struggles of his own, was getting exasperated with me and I seriously feared my intense need to control would drive him away. I got caught up in trauma and petty arguments. This was not normal for me and I didn't want it to be! I was pretty miserable.
I guess I just got tired of being angry, resentful and worrying about things I had no control over. Something had to change. I started to read everything I could about finding a happier life for myself and learning how to let go of the outcome. It would be hard but living how I had been would be way worse.
As I started my quest for contentment one word kept coming into my mind. Peace. If I could figure "peace" out maybe I could be the happier, kinder, gentler person I want to be.
Peace is what? What is Peace? What Peace Is..
1. Peace is actively accepting what is happening. No comparing. No judging. No fixing. No living for the future or grasping for a different reality in a way that brings undue or unwise strain to your person…Because you are not any of these things.
2. Peace is an act of solidarity with oneself and with all beings and matter. I am not my thoughts or my circumstances, but I am part of all that is. Space and things and thoughts, all of these relate to each other as distinct realities but not separate ones. When I breathe air from the space around me and take it in, something is shared with me and I share something with it. WE are a collective harmony that sometimes is experienced as disharmony, and sometimes not, but we are a true tapestry. It is great gift to intentionally submit to this unity and mutuality, to be aware of it and to embrace it consciously. There is wisdom that flows from this intentionality and its fruit is peace.
3. Peace is more than acceptance and solidarity though. Peace is loving kindness for all beings and for all things FOR their distinctness and FOR their togetherness. True humanity is innately loving and can be found in this level of consciousness and skill alone. Until I can love all things for their freedom to be unique and for their ‘lack of freedom’ in their connectedness, I am always reacting out of something other than my true, highest nature, which is loving kindness.
All that is not peace in me comes from living down to a lower impulse and it is this lower impulse-fear, hate, anxiety, too much of a good thing- that promotes fracturedness and uneasiness. Loving kindness brings me into harmony with my true self, with who I am and peace is the sign that love has made its home in me where it is destined to flower and grow. Where there is love, I am being my true, distinct self as part of the larger connectedness I share with all beings and all things.
I'm not sure how much of that makes sense but it made sense to me as I was writing it. I would love to say that I've become this totally zen being who always sees the glass as half full but that wouldn't be true. I still struggle every day. Despite that, I'm starting to learn to chill out a bit. To think before I overreact or become defensive. I'm learning to forgive my mistakes and shortcomings. While I regret any pain they caused anyone else, I don't regret the pain they caused me. All of it made me who I am and led me to where I am today.
And at for this exact moment in time, where I am is not a bad place to be.