Finding peace in every moment

As I am contemplating how exactly to write about what’s in my heart, I am looking at the joyous smile on the face of my almost 5 year old daughter, beaming at me from a photo calendar on the wall. I ask myself, what will her life be? Will it be peaceful? And I mean more than the external, political peace, we all wish for humanity, but the peace that resides in the heart touched by God and never let empty of His grace. There are so many stories of lives shaped through war and love. A very touching one, of faith as recognition and heritage, was just shared with me via Baha’i Views and The Washington Post. And it made me think again about how the lessons I am learning these days will hopefully benefit my children and help shape their identity.

When last Monday’s study circle served food for thought — and the soul — I was not aware yet how timely Abdu’l-Baha’s words would be:

When a thought of war comes, oppose it by a stronger thought of peace. A thought of hatred must be destroyed by a more powerful thought of love.
(Abdu’l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 29)

Now looking back after a tumultuous week, I am so grateful for all that enabled once again my inner peace — God’s grace, the help of friends, long walks, mindful breathing, and two books. But I also reflect on the fact that peace is not an easy thing — it indeed requires work and effort. “A stronger thought of peace… a more powerful thought of love.”

The two books I have found so helpful are The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict by the Arbinger Institute: a very important book which by explaining the dynamics of how we box ourselves into warring hearts, we render ourselves impotent to invite peace in others, until and unless we reach that peace within our own hearts; and Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life by Thich Nhat Hanh, the Vietnamese Buddhist monk who reminds us that the choice between peace and everything else, joy and everything else, life and everything else, happens in every little step, in every little breath, in every little moment. Do yourselves a favor, read these books. But more importantly, reward yourselves with a deep, calming, soothing breath. “Breathe, you are alive!”

One Response to “Finding peace in every moment

  • Inner peace is indeed worth striving for every day. It can be forgotten in the daily grind and rush to accomplish. The Anatomy of Peace and Peace is Every Step are both wonderful books which I found in large print at http://www.readhowyouwant.com/pcsWebUI/searchresults.aspx?pg=1. You may or may know anyone with difficulty reading standard print size, but for those that do large print is really useful.

    Best of luck on your spiritual journey.

    Peace,
    Molly

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