Chapter 11

Are You Ready to Give Up Conflict for Peace?

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.                               Martin Luther King, Jr.

Peace Through Nonviolence

The British had ruled India for over 200 years. In the early 1900’s, Mahatma Gandhi took some very peaceful yet effective measures to regain independence for his country. He undertook a simple march to the sea to mine salt. Mining salt was not permitted under British rule. His actions attracted attention from both the British invaders as well as India’s citizenry. His civil disobedience landed him in jail. His nonviolent protest against injustice brought awareness to minds that had previously accepted injustice and had resigned themselves to a hopeless situation. Gandhi inspired awareness that caused a shift in consciousness. With a shift in consciousness from blind acceptance to a willingness to do whatever was necessary to end tyranny, the British rule simply lost its hold and crumbled. The British withdrew from India solely due to the use of nonviolent resistance to injustice.

Subsequently, due to insecurity around freshly gained independence there was a Hindu/Muslim power struggle to rule the country. At first it appeared that independence was worse than British rule. Gandhi was willing to fast unto death to end the huge wave of endless killing, the brutality of brother against brother. Gandhi’s simple yet strong determination opened minds to other possibilities and the Hindus and Muslims decided to try to live together in peace.

Mahatma Gandhi found a nonviolent solution to end conflict in British ruled India. He stood up for independence for the people of India through nonviolent resistance against oppression. There is always a nonviolent solution to every problem if we are willing to open ourselves to all possibilities. When we allow ourselves to be Divinely directed, willing to do whatever it takes, we can be shown how and where to take a stand. It requires a willingness to be assertive, courageous and fearless and to know that with God all things are possible.

Martin Luther King, Jr., inspired by Gandhi, took a similar stand against Black discrimination. He organized freedom rides, where Blacks protested against discrimination on buses. Every Black walked to work instead of taking the bus in a nonviolent protest against discrimination on the basis of skin color, exposing the cruelty of prejudice. I am aware that there is still prejudice against Afro-Americans, but at least they have more freedom and opportunities than before the freedom rides. We can employ nonviolent resistance to all prejudice and injustice.

The ego thought system has to be brought out of the closet in order that it be looked at and seen as preposterous. Exposing injustice brings about a shift in consciousness. With that shift, prejudice and tyranny can no longer be sustained. They have no support. The world is a projection of your mind. When there is a shift in consciousness, it has to reflect in a more peaceful world. If the world is in turmoil, how can your mind be at peace? Do you not think the world needs peace as much as you do? Do you not want to give it to the world as much as you want to receive it? Unless you do, you cannot receive it.

God created you to be and have everything forever, and to make sure you could not lose your inheritance, He also created everyone to be and have everything. If you truly knew that, could you ever be in conflict with anyone? What would be its purpose? We attack, defend, fight and argue because we think someone has something we lack. If we truly knew we had everything, there would be no purpose for conflict. God created us as peace and gave us a purpose of extending that peace to all. Accepting our mission to project peace, we will find it.

Core Issue Behind Crisis In Middle East

In the summer of 2002, the Middle East crisis had so escalated that young Muslim children were resorting to destroying their tender lives by becoming suicide bombers. They had no purpose for living. They hated their brothers the Jews because they had been taught to do so since early childhood both at home and in school. The story of their hatred is historical. It goes back to the time of Ishmael and Isaac. God had promised Abraham that he would be the father of a great nation. But Abraham’s wife, Sarah was barren. So she gave her maidservant, Haggar, to Abraham. Sarah apparently did not trust God implicitly. She took it upon herself to figure out a way to make what God promised come out right. Had she trusted Him, she would have let Him reveal His plan, rather than step in with her own. Abraham listened to his wife. He also must not have trusted God implicitly. Shortly, Abraham and Haggar had a child, Ishmael.

Sixteen years passed and God came again to Abraham and told him again that he and Sarah would have a son. It seemed ridiculous as Sarah was by then nearly 90 years old and hadn’t yet conceived. She laughed at the idea. But as foretold, she bore a child, Isaac, and now there was a problem. Because of Ishmael, Haggar had become more than a maidservant in Haggar’s mind. She was now the mother of a great nation and so was not treating Sarah with the respect that was her mistress’ due. At times Haggar goaded Ishmael to threaten little Isaac’s life, as Isaac posed a threat to her son’s inheritance. To resolve the conflict, Haggar and Ishmael were sent away. They were rejected. Ishmael became the father of the great Muslim nation. Isaac grew up to become the father of the great Jewish nation.

Throughout history the Jews and Arabs have hated one another. Brother has fought against brother. It is understandable that Ishmael felt rejected but every problem has a nonviolent solution where peace can prevail when we let God solve the problem for us. Like Haggar and Ishmael, we have all felt abandoned. We must each be willing to forgive the past by taking responsibility for what led to our banishment. Like Sarah and Abraham, we have distrusted God, but errors are correctable. It is time to correct our errors by being honest about them and trusting God to show us how to heal them. All are God’s children and equally precious, and there is always a peaceful solution where everyone wins, when that is our objective.

God Is More Powerful Than Weapons Of Mass Destruction

It helps to get to the root cause of our problems. When we uncover that, we will have compassion for every situation. There is a solution to every uprising when we find our love, compassion and brotherhood. We must look deeply to find the root cause behind the war in Iraq. We must send love and light to all victims as well as victimizers. If we take sides, we are no better than those who are destroying each other. God is more powerful than weapons of mass destruction or biological warfare. When we remember that, we invite God’s hand of intervention into every situation, no matter how impossible it may seem.

Once Sai Baba gave Himself a birthday present of pushing the whole Chinese army out of India. It was November 22, 1962, the day before His birthday. He was chiding His devotees, “You are not listening to Me because you are all worried about the news from the North, but I assure you that My birthday will not be spoiled by any bad news. In fact there will be positively good news.” By midnight that night there was not a single Chinese to be found in all of India. They had all left of their own accord. Next day was Baba’s birthday and that was the present He gave Himself and of course all of India. God always gives joy to all and with Him all things are possible.

So, to end all wars forever, we need merely harness that Divine power and peace must prevail. How do we enlist God’s power to prevent or end war? Goodness invites God’s participation. When Abraham pleaded with God to intervene on behalf of Sodom and Gomorrah, God said it would be possible if there were only five good people. With enough goodness, Divine intervention is possible. We do have freewill. If the door is shut tightly against God, if there is no one who is turning to God for a solution, He cannot enter, for He honors our freedom. You are turning to God when you lead a life of goodness, purity and morality.

The power of God can make pretzels of nuclear weapons. It is time for world peace. Baba says to send pink light to those in positions of power and to the whole world. Pink light is God’s light; it is Divine light. Pink is the color of love. Hijackers threw down their weapons upon receiving such light. It does not matter where you are or what your particular circumstances, you can do your part to restore peace to earth. When you want peace in the world, you will be shown what to do to truly be an effective instrument toward that end. It all starts with peace in your heart.

Look with peace upon your brothers and God will come rushing into your heart in gratitude for your gift to Him. The most sacred spot on earth is where an ancient hatred has become a present love. As long as there is polarization, good guys and bad, there is no solution. God always has a perfect solution in which all involved will feel satisfaction, if we let Him solve our problems, whatever they may be. It is good to look for the root cause of the problem, as then it has some hope of being solved. The root cause of all problems is the making of ego to replace God. Once this is clearly understood, all efforts will be directed toward the undoing of ego.

Peace In The World Begins With Peace In The Home

When Shari’s mother, Pat, was a young girl, Pat’s mother favored Pat’s sister, Jane and Pat grew up with the pain of not being acknowledged, so was determined not to inflict that pain on any of her children. None the less, she and her daughter Shari had an especially loving and easy relationship.

While visiting Europe together when Shari was 16, Shari’s cousin died in a motorcycle accident. Though they were so near, Shari and her mom did not attend the funeral. Many years later, while Shari was nursing her mother during a bout with breast cancer Shari brought up incident. Pat immediately justified her past omission on the basis of some petty issue she held against her sister, Jane. It dawned on Shari that her mother was jealous of Aunt Jane, even after all those years, even after Pat’s mother was long gone, and her sister Jane also had passed away. That seemed pretty loaded.

Oddly, Shari found herself being treated with hostility by her sisters and even her mom during the year of being at her mother’s bedside. She was mystified at the bizarre treatment she was receiving from her entire family. At first she thought it had to do with their feeling threatened by her spiritual choices, but as she kept digging, it dawned on her that her sisters were jealous of Shari’s bond with their mom especially during the first 30 odd years of Shari’s life.

At around age 30, Shari’s spiritual interests took her away from family and her sisters took the opportunity to strengthen relations with their mom. So they felt threatened by Shari’s reappearance and even Pat accused Shari of returning to reestablish favorite daughter status, though Shari had no hidden agenda. She came to help a mother in a time of family crisis and so was mystified by all the accusations and misperceptions. It became apparent that Shari’s absence had allowed Pat to fulfill her need to love all her other children without the complication of their unbidden, passionate embrace. Shari was not aware as they were growing up that the others felt excluded and jealous, though she never felt close to any of her sisters and always felt excluded by them. She frequently went out of her way to express her love toward them though it never matured into a closeness with any of her siblings. Then on their mother’s death bed all the skeletons came out of the closet.

Shari’s mother died before the family conflict had been resolved. Shari was so stricken with pain at the hostility directed against her that she could not attend her mother’s funeral. A year later, the pieces of the puzzle came together for Shari. She understood that the problem was that her mother thought that to be a good Mom she had to love all her children equally. Her idea, though good, was based on her own unhealed past. In that moment of understanding, her mother’s energy enveloped Shari so strongly she got goose bumps. She immediately knew her mom was free of her guilt for loving her more, and realized that her Mom in turn was not a bad Mom for loving her sister Jane more and so she no longer felt jealous of Jane. In that moment, the past was all healed, once the plug was pulled on the core issue. As soon as the core issue was healed, all the resentment, jealousy and guilt disappeared as well. Ego was behind Pat’s false idea that caused a life of untold grief not only for her but for many who were close to her.

This trajectory is perhaps not so different from the story of Joseph in the Bible. His father favored him and his jealous brothers threw him into a pit, sold him into slavery and told his father he was dead. It seems that the cause of much sibling rivalry starts with jealousy over parental love. When we know who we are, we will not feel the need for our parents’ love to complete us. When we love ourselves we will know we are whole and complete and will not stoop to jealousy if a sibling is favored, or will not resent a parent if they seem to love one child more than the rest, for whatever reason. This shift in consciousness will restore peace in our homes.

Ego Is Your Only Enemy

You do have an enemy, but it is never your brother or God. Your enemy is ego and you can vanquish your opponent, but not via the usual means. First you have to be convinced that ego is indeed your only enemy. If you listen to its voice you can be sure it will not tell you it is your enemy. It will advise you to make friends with it. Only when you see ego as the cause of all your conflict, anguish, agony, pain, betrayal, hurt and suffering of any kind, will you understand what ego is and then you will agree that ego is not your friend.

Baba says, “Face the devil.” The way to vanquish your opponent is not by fighting ego, but by looking at it. Ego is nonexistent and looking reveals its nothingness. When you look, ego disappears and your war is over. You cannot overcome ego by fighting with it. To fight it is to meet ego on its terms. To vanquish ego, you must look to God. God can show you ego’s nothingness and once seen you will never wish to ally with it again. That is nonviolent resistance against the greatest injustice ever perpetrated. As long as you feel the need to fight ego, you are using ego’s devices to destroy it. Ego is happy for this game, for it is much too clever to be destroyed when you employ it to destroy itself. Of course it will agree to the idea, because if it didn’t you would turn to God and He would show you how to be victorious over ego. Ego’s goal for you is, “Fight, but do not win.”

The voice for God is always quiet because it speaks of peace. Yet peace is stronger than war, because it heals. We all want peace, but there is one who wants war and who is the instigator of all war. That is ego. Peace is ego’s greatest enemy, because according to its interpretation of reality, war is the guarantee of its survival. Now we come to the truth behind every altercation, no matter how great or small. Ego wants you to be at war. The world of peace, joy and love that God created and the world of constant conflict, attack, inequality, unfairness and injustice must meet that ego be vanquished. Only when we see that ego is the cause of war will we open the door to lasting peace in the world.

Just as light dispels the darkness, so war cannot continue where peace has entered. As long as there is war, conflict, attack and tyranny, ego is happy. Ego is always happy at our expense. We are responsible for ego’s trouble making. There are no victims. There are no accidents. Ego is only sustained by the energy we give it. Give it no energy and you bring peace to every situation, for ego is then undone, and thus war, attack, anger and conflict are undone. The only war that is being waged in truth is inside. Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with ‘me.’ Peace in the world begins with peace in the home. When you relinquish ego, you invite peace into your home, and thereby do your part to bring peace to the world.

The key to a peaceful world is the undoing of ego, the withdrawing of energy from it. The world is in your mind and when you want peace in the world, it will be reflected in a peaceful mind. Your mind cannot be at peace as long as you are investing in ego’s survival. In order to undo ego you have to see it for what it is and stop giving it the power to be the warmonger that you have been supporting. Most people don’t even realize that they are supporting a warmonger. That is because ego is very crafty and clever. It uses the power of our minds to outsmart us. If ever you really realized the monster you were allied with you would cast it away immediately as one who realizes he is holding a poisonous snake. The best way to overcome ego is to unite with all humanity. In wanting peace for all you are doing just that.

Ego is a fake. It has no power of its own. It doesn’t exist. All the power to cause havoc in your life is given it by you alone. Therefore none of the conflict that we see all around us need ever be. It has nothing to do with truth. It has nothing to do with God or God’s will. It does not make a good story. It is not justifiable in any way. Do not find ways to justify war, conflict, anger or hatred. Do not think that you can learn good things from them. Do not think that conflict is a good way to discover the truth.

Do not fight. Use nonviolent means to overcome, outsmart, and outmaneuver your opponent. Baba says, “Life is a game, play it.” God’s solution is to look at ego. Looking involves no fighting whatsoever. Looking is so easy. Yet it is the last thing ego hopes you’ll do. As soon as you look without judgment you see that ego was only a bunch of hot air. We have been fighting against a phantom opponent. You have been at war against yourself. Let this war against yourself be over. Every response to ego is a call to war and war does deprive us of peace. Yet in this war there is no opponent. This is the interpretation of reality we must make to secure peace and the only one we need ever make.

Peace is your birthright

Peace is your inheritance. It is your birthright. You can claim it now. There is nothing opposing your will. If you truly want peace, what is stopping you from experiencing it right now? You are all-powerful. Take back your power and live in peace. Conflict requires force and force is not power. Force is used by those who really believe themselves powerless. Only those who are afraid use force. God’s power is kind, innocent, tender, never forceful. That is because God knows that He is all-powerful. When you know you are all-powerful, as you are, you will never feel the need to attack, conflict, contest, defend, vanquish or overpower others. You will know that your safety lies in your defenselessness. You will know your strength lies in your innocence and you will have no fear, for you will know you are always protected. God’s angels always hover near and you will abide in peace.

When any situation has been wholly dedicated to truth, peace is inevitable. Its attainment is the criterion by which the wholeness of the dedication can be safely assumed. To dedicate anything to truth is to dedicate it to God.When you dedicate anything to God you will feel peaceful. You will have no need to be anxious or fearful. You will know your life is in capable hands, thus a good outcome is assured.

Peace of mind is achieved largely due to perfect honesty. When you are perfectly honest, you will be satisfied with yourself. You will feel contented. This contentment is peace. If you are wholly free of fear of any kind and if all those who meet or even think of you share in your perfect peace, then you can be sure you have learned God’s lesson and that you are honest.

Sai Baba has named His ashram Prasanthi Nilayam, the abode of eternal peace. Eternal peace is our home, our inheritance. If peace is not our experience, we are choosing to be other than home where God wills us to be. We are choosing to have a different experience than perfect peace, yet perfect peace is a choice that is always available for it is the only real state. God created us to share His peace with us.

We made ego and ego is the source of all war. Since ego is not real, war also is not real, though it will not work to simply say it is not real. We have to transform war into peace in order that we be restored to a peaceful experience. You who are not at war must look for brothers and sisters and recognize all you see as your equals, because only equals are at peace. Because God’s equal children have everything, they cannot compete. But if they perceive any of their brothers or sisters as anything other than their perfect equals, the idea of competition has entered their minds. Do not underestimate your need to be vigilant against this idea because all conflict comes from it.

Peace comes to you when you become a teacher of peace. Peace is the acknowledgment of perfect purity, from which no one is excluded. God created everyone as His child thus we are all within that holy circle. Joy is its unifying attribute, with no one left outside to suffer guilt alone. The power of God draws everyone to its safe embrace of love and union. Stand quietly within this circle and attract all tortured minds to join with you in the safety of its peace and holiness.

We understand nothing until we pass the test of perfect peace, for peace and understanding go together and cannot be found alone. We may think we have understanding, but if in the sharing of our understanding conflict is created, we have not understood anything. So we always have to watch our tendency to draw conclusions, to think we know something, to think we have a corner on the truth. Ego is very slippery and evasive and doesn’t want to be found out. Only if our experience is of unflappable peace we can safely assume that we have understood truly.

Peace comes in needing nothing. There is a Sanskrit word, Santushta, which means ‘to be content with whatever one gets.’ Therein lies peace. As soon as we hanker after anything, our peace is disturbed. People say to Baba, “I want peace.” Baba says, “Take away the I and the want and what is left is peace.” As long as we are thinking about ourselves in a selfish way, we will not be able to attain peace. As long as we have expectations of others or think we need something we don’t have right now, we will not be able to find peace. When we stop thinking about ourselves, stop amassing wealth or progeny, or hankering after worldly possessions, peace is there. Peace is always there. We just cover it up with ideas that ego has encouraged us to adopt. Ego is determined to delude us into thinking we do not already have everything.

Once a king who was searching for peace was told to find the happiest man in all the world and ask him for his shirt. Then he would know perfect peace. The king searched far and wide. He found a few happy people, but when he asked if any of them thought they were the happiest person in the whole world, none could own that level of happiness. Rather discouraged, the king returned to his palace to discover laughter coming from his courtyard. Upon investigation, he found a very poor man sitting under a nearby tree. The king asked if he was the happiest man in the whole world. The man laughed and declared confidently that he certainly was. The king asked for his shirt. The man laughed again and told the king that he didn’t own a shirt. We lose our peace because we let our desire for worldly possessions and fear of losing those possessions disturb our peace.

Peace Cannot Be Attained By Compromising Integrity

When we compromise our truth to avoid friction, agitation, or “rocking the boat” we cannot find peace. To be peacefully uncompromising takes strength and courage. In a marriage, sometimes we give in to our partner to keep the peace, but when we succumb to ease rather than integrity, something in us feels we have sold our souls. When that is your experience, do not compromise. Ask God for a solution. His solution will always be conflict free and you will know it is God’s solution by the peace you experience even with the most impossible situations.

We have to be willing to face uncomfortable situations rather than avoid them. One friend who goes to great lengths to avoid rocking the boat had a house mate that he no longer wished to be with but he did not know how to tell him, so decided to sell his house to solve his problem. This fear of conflict at all costs does not solve problems, but rather denies them. They will inevitably resurface in other ways and in other areas of one’s life. God can offer a solution that both will feel good about when there is a willingness to call on Him. It will be a solution from out of time. It will be a solution where both parties win. God wants to help us with all our problems, be they large or small.

To Have Peace, Respond, Don’t React

When someone acts unkindly, you can respond by forgiving them. True forgiveness recognizes that ultimately nothing happened. You are not a body, you are spirit - eternally unaffectable. True forgiveness does not mean ignoring a slight. We must ask Spirit to show us how to restore peace to a tear in the curtain. We may be directed to request an apology or an admission of error before resuming a relationship after an altercation.

A Course In Miracles tells us that to ignore or deny inappropriate behavior is forgiveness to destroy. When we let unkindness go unnoticed, we do a disservice and enable. Any act of unkindness will produce guilt even if your brother defends or justifies his actions. Peace comes in healing relationships so that all concerned have an opportunity to be free of guilt. That is true love for your enemy. Ego is our only enemy and when your brother feels guilty, ego wins and both of you lose. Forbearance means to respond rather than react. To react is to forget to invite spirit into your situation.

I was leaving at the end of the month and closing our house up for the winter. The person who was occupying the apartment adjoining our house would have to move. Already she had been looking for months for different housing to no avail. Where we lived at that time, there was a marked shortage of rentals, especially within her price range. I assured her that I would not leave her stranded. Together we asked Spirit for help. By the end of the week she had a house-sitting job for the winter in the place just across the street. It was a beautiful home and a peaceful solution. When we are sensitive to each other’s needs, we open the door to a happy outcome for all concerned. We both stepped out of the way and let God solve the problem.

Peace hinges on how we respond to any situation, and cannot be disturbed by what others do or don’t do. If you find yourself having difficulty with anyone, there is a peaceful solution where you can both feel honored and where a happy outcome is assured for both parties. The Iroquois Indian nations are remembered for practicing consensus. Their tribes would sit together in a pow wow, drawing their circle. Everyone was heard and only when there was universal agreement around any issue did the party breakup.

If anyone disturbs your peace, you can be sure you are allied with ego and that you have not found true peace. It was only an idea of peace. It was superficial. Real peace cannot be disturbed. When we trust God implicitly we will be guided through even the most turbulent and rocky moments of our lives with peace and equanimity. God only wants us to have a peaceful experience. When we trust Him implicitly we will be shown how to bring peace to every situation, at every opportunity. Peace is only possible where there is a happy outcome desired for all concerned.

Peace Comes With A Willingness To Expose Error

When everyone thought the world was flat, the captains of the ships who set sail around the world were scoffed at and there was every attempt at preventing them from launching their boats. Somewhere within the heart of each person who believed the world flat, there was a knowing that it was round, yet there was a tremendous investment in its flatness. They did not want to be wrong, because they were allied with ego and ego would then become less credible. Once you are willing to be wrong about other things, what’s to stop you from being willing to be wrong about ego? It takes courage to be willing to be wrong. Those who were willing to set sail were faced with tremendous resistance. It takes courage to disturb the peace for a real purpose.

What is the big deal about being wrong? If you thought the world was flat when it was really round, would you not be happy to change your mind, once the truth were known? We have all been wrong, because we all made ego to replace God as our Source. It is ego that tells you that to admit error is weakness. Ego knows that in your willingness to admit error its nothingness is exposed and it will lose its power over you. Those who are willing to be wrong have tremendous strength. Those who insist they are right, no matter how irrational their conclusions, are actually very fearful. 

An apology is an admission of error, not of guilt. When you are wrong, if you are unwilling to admit it, you are making the error real. It means that you are choosing to be guilty rather than allow your idea of lack to be healed. How many religious wars have not been fought because someone thought they were right while someone else was wrong? There is always a way to get at the truth, when we are willing to be wrong or to see that we both have a contribution to make to the truth. As long as you need to be right, you will be at war with yourself and think that the other person is really the problem. You will fight and feel perfectly justified in your position.

We may find ourselves in an impossible situation, but with God all things are possible. We do not have to know how to solve our problems. We just have to be willing to be wrong about our position and willing to do whatever is necessary to resolve issues peacefully. We have to be willing to trust that there is a solution that will serve everyone’s best interests.

 

World Peace

I yearn for peace for all humanity. I confess I want peace in the world more than anything. I want it with all my heart. I want it with a passion. I will not be content until there is peace for everyone. Until then my heart is in agony for the suffering that wars and violence foster. I cannot be content while my brother or sister is afraid that she may be shot, raped, made homeless or starved to death. I am one with everyone and until everyone is assured peace, I am not at peace.

Surely this yearning for world peace is a noble Divine discontent and is not of ego, but rather comes from an understanding of our oneness with all beings. Until there is peace everywhere we cannot claim to be at peace. The more minds who are inspired to join in that greatest of crusades toward world peace, the more quickly it will be the direct experience of every living thing. As long as we think peace for everyone is impossible, we keep it at bay. When enough minds become truly miracle minded, we will literally see a world transformed into a world of peace for all.

Overcoming The Obstacles To Peace

Peace has obstacles to overcome in its attainment. The first obstacle to peace is the desire to get rid of it. I realize that seems odd, but the last thing ego wants is peace, and so it will cause you to think you want to get rid of it. As long as you ally with ego you will feel uncomfortable in the presence of peace. Or you will have a semblance of peace and think that to be real peace.

When I first came to Sai Baba’s ashram I was there about 6 weeks and then really wanted to move on. The experience was too peaceful. There wasn’t enough action. I was looking for more adventure, excitement and thrill in my life. I wasn’t ready for peace. I wanted to get rid of it. In order to have peace, we must desire it.

Body-consciousness is the second obstacle to peace. As long as you believe the body valuable for what it offers, you will not be at peace. The body offers nothing you really want. When you believe it does, you will cater to its needs and this will cause a disturbance to your peace.

There is a story from the Mahabharata, a great Indian classic, of a pool whose waters would take on miraculous powers one day of the year, every year, to satisfy everyone’s wishes. Kids would wish for toys and subsequently get their toys. But there was always a down side to the fulfillment of their desires. Either the toys broke or were stolen or in one way or other their joy turned to sorrow, their pleasure to pain. As the years went by the children grew older and started wishing for spouses. And the dream spouse would come along, but their relationships were invariably fraught with sorrow. One spouse died, another drifted away, or there was constant conflict. In one way or other none of their wishes produced lasting peace.

There was a cripple boy who was unable to get to the pool in time to make a wish. Each time the moment arrived he was too far off and by the time he made it to the water’s edge, the healing powers had closed down. So he watched from a distance all that was taking place. He saw how everyone was getting what they wished for and how they would end up disappointed. He felt compassion for all those who got their wishes but subsequently suffered. His heart was moved and he found himself genuinely wishing for the happiness of all his brothers and sisters. It hurt him to see their suffering. As he had this true wish that was not for himself or his lameness and was free of all body consciousness, he miraculously experienced a healing. In his compassion he forgot about himself and that shift in consciousness permitted him to be healed. Body consciousness keeps peace away. Catering to the needs and desires of the body is a bottomless pit. In order to obtain peace, it is necessary to overcome body consciousness.

The third obstacle to peace is the attraction of death. Death is an attempt at peace, but it is not a solution. It is a way to escape life and there is no peace in the need to escape. The way to attain peace is by standing still in your problem, whatever it may be and asking God for a solution. With God all problems are solvable. Death is ego’s idea and not of God. You may disagree that you are attracted to death, but if you feel death to be inevitable that is its attraction. Ask to be shown if there is another final solution. Is death really inevitable? Be willing to ask. Be willing to look. It takes courage. It takes a willingness to be wrong even about death. When eternal life becomes your attraction, you will have peace.

And the last obstacle to peace is fear of God. We fear peace, because we fear God, as peace and God are one. If you fear God, you will not want peace to be your experience. So we must look at why we fear God. We fear God because we have listened to ego. Ego has told us that God is fearful and vengeful and that He wants to punish us. These are lies. Ego wants us to be afraid of God. Ego’s survival depends on your fear of God. As long as you are afraid of God, ego is guaranteed life at your expense. Ego doesn’t care about you. It doesn’t want you to discover God to be your very dearest friend.

Many Christians are taught to believe that God is quite literally fearful as part of their religion. They are taught that they must believe Jesus died for their sins. If they believe this they will go to heaven and if not, they will be damned to hell. In their minds then it must be that God judges them as to whether they believe He caused His son Jesus to suffer a cruel death so they could be saved. This theology must set up visions of a ruthless, vengeful God. Anyone who challenges their beliefs is seen as attacking them, as allied with the devil or in some way evil. Thereby, they protect themselves from the truth. The truth needs no defense or protection. When you know that God is love, you will have attained peace.

God Is My Dearest Companion

I am not afraid of God. He is my friend. I am in constant communion with Him. I hear God talking to me because I trust that He can. This opens the door to that Divine communication. We have to invite God in or He cannot be seen or heard. He is unimposing. Ego is imposing. Ego is in your face, demanding attention. Only when you want only God, and turn to Him for everything does ego lose its power.

God is the Source of all peace, harmony, stillness, kindness, gentleness, contentment, serenity and calm. When we turn to God for a peaceful solution, the world becomes a place where lasting peace is possible for everyone. Peace is expressed through honesty, integrity, gentleness, tenderness, kindness, silence, communion with the Divine and in choosing a contemplative life - simple living and high thinking. To have peace, give peace.

Illusion meets illusion while truth meets itself. The meeting of illusions leads to war. Peace looking on itself extends itself. War is the condition in which fear is born and grows and seeks to dominate. Peace is the state where love abides and seeks to share itself. Conflict and peace are opposites; where one abides, the other cannot be; where either goes, the other disappears. The memory of God is obscured where minds become illusion’s battleground. Yet far beyond any senseless war it shines, ready to be remembered when you side with peace. God is your friend. Remember Him and live in peace that peace may prevail on earth.

Thank You dear God that You only want peace for us. Please grant us the confidence to know You are there for us whenever we turn to You. Help us to trust that You can solve all our conflicts and bring peace to every situation. Grant peace to every home, neighborhood and country, precious Lord. Turn the leaders of the world toward peace. With You peace is possible. With You war is impossible. Let brother express only love for brother as it was always meant to be. Let all mankind walk together in perfect harmony.

May all beings in all the worlds be happy and blest, Amen.


Peace Is God’s Will For Everyone

Figure 11