Achieving peace in the world - Los Angeles Post-ExaminerLos Angeles Post-Examiner

Achieving peace in the world

A pregnant Sudanese woman has been sentenced to flogging and death for not practicing Islam and for marrying a Christian man. There is outrage, anger, and hatred in the world about it.

In Nigeria more than 200 teenage girls have been kidnapped by a militant group.  They are being used as tools to negotiate for the release of prisoners. There are threats that the girls will be sold into marriage or slavery. There is outrage, anger, and hatred in the world about it.

In India, two teenage girls were grabbed, raped, and hung from a tree and all they wanted to do was go to the bathroom. There is outrage, anger, and hatred in the world about it.

There are other cases in other countries including ours. I hear the cries and the demands that we be outraged. We should be angry, is what I hear. And yet, I am not angry. Nor am I outraged. What I am is aware.

There is much more than a single injustice in a certain country to think about here. It goes way beyond that. These seeming unjust acts are in many religions, many governments, many neighborhoods and in many of our own homes. All of these acts occur on different scales. Some are so large they make the world news, and some are so small that we don’t even think of it as the same thing.

My question is: Will outrage, anger, and hatred change anything? We have wars and we have rebellions. They are not working. We pray for peace. That’s good, but is there more that we, as individuals, can do? Perhaps we can find greater wisdom by understanding this Chinese proverb:

“If there is light in the soul
There will be beauty in the person
If there is beauty in the person
There will be harmony in the house
If there is harmony in the house
There will be order in the nation
If there is order in the nation
There will be peace in the world“

Using the above proverb, this is how we expand peace?

If there is order in the nation,
There will be peace in the world

The Iguazu Falls that border Brazil and Argentina. (Photo via Wikipedia)

The Iguazu Falls that border Brazil and Argentina.
(Photo via Wikipedia)

Attitudes won’t change overnight. Nothing in nature does. We can, however, start the process of creating world peace by starting in our own country. As a nation, how different are we than the rest of the world?

We have political parties at war with one another. How can we have peace in the world if we have politicians that work to undermine each other in our own country?

We have race wars. We can call them gang wars or turf wars if we want. Sometimes these conflicts are physical and sometimes they are verbal. It is all war.

We have our own religious wars. Why are our religious beliefs something we holler and fight about? We even kill one another because of those beliefs. Wow, is it really about truth that we fight or is it about control?

Rich people and poor people. It’s a war. One doesn’t trust the other, and one looks down on the other. Neither wants to associate with the other. What is up with that?

It’s amazing how we unite during tragedy, whether it’s 9-11, Katrina, or WWI & II. That’s when we take care of each other, we support each other, and, (dare I say it) we even love each other. What would happen if every day we were as supportive of one another as we are in times of crisis? I believe that we would be in the process of creating order in the nation.

If there is harmony in the house,
There will be order in the nation

My home was not so different than many others in my area. Mom and dad had fights. There were power-struggles among the siblings, and as we grew, there were the struggles for independence. And conflict! Lots of conflict. Don’t get me wrong, there were also good times, but the fact remains there was a lot of conflict.

Back in those days the man ruled the roost. He had the power. He handled the money and he made the decisions. Everything was his possession and that included the women and children. They could be his punching bag at times. Nobody paid much attention to it. Even the churches (Catholic in my case) discouraged women from rebelling. They said she would be a saint if she put up with it. They said it would be okay in the end. They said God doesn’t give you more than you can handle, so … just handle it.

Bullying. It’s all bullying at different levels, whether in a school, in a marriage, in a country or in the world. Bullying! It’s all the same. What would happen if we stayed as supportive of one another in the family as we are in times of crisis? I believe that we would be in the process of creating harmony in the house.

If there is beauty in the person
There will be harmony in the house

What makes a person beautiful? What is beauty? According to Merriam-Webster the definition of beauty is: the qualities in a person or a thing that give pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalt the mind or spirit. Wikipedia says it a bit differently: a characteristic of a person, animal, placeobject, or idea that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure or satisfaction. The experience of “beauty” often involves an interpretation of some entity as being in balance and harmony with nature, which may lead to feelings of attraction and emotional well-being.

When you encounter beauty are you able to hate or harbor anger at the same time? No, you can’t, it is impossible. Why? Beauty and harmony exude a very powerful energy.  Hate and anger also exude energy, and, again, it’s a very powerful energy. That energy can be felt by every person and thing around it. We’ve all experienced it. Which energy feels better to you?

What if personal beauty caused an individual to smile and got a smile back in return? We want to have world peace but often have trouble achieving family harmony. It is important for individuals to love, respect, and find excitement in discovering each family member’s similarities and differences. How else can we honor our neighbors and the world? What would happen if we fed ourselves with love and joy? I believe that we would be in the process of creating beauty in the person.

If there is light in the soul
There will be beauty in the person

Ichijoji Kasai, Buddhist Temple in Japan (Photo via Wikipedia)

Ichijoji Kasai,
Buddhist Temple in Japan
(Photo via Wikipedia)

Light! Illumination! Vision! Wisdom! This comes from knowing yourself. This comes from knowing your connection to something bigger than yourself. Think about changing your feelings regarding yourself and figuring out who you really are. You are one with a Source, an energy that is creative, and a light of truth. When you understand that connection, and then start to embody it and saturate your very being with it, the only energy you can possibly exude is that of beauty. Call it love, call it harmony, call it order, call it peace, call it goodness or call it Godness. I believe that when you find your true self you will find the light in your soul.

The bottom line is that world peace start with each of us. World respect for countries, cultures, sexes, skin tones, ages and sizes begin with the individual. It begins with you and me. Mahatma Gandhi said, “You must become the change you want the world to be.” If you and I want the world to be at peace, we must each strive to become peaceful ourselves.

As I come to the end of this article I want to assure you that I am not against anger. I am not against outrage. I am not against war. I am simply “for” peace, “for” love, “for” unity, and “for” differences. As Ernest Holmes stated, “It would be wonderful indeed if a group of persons should arrive on earth who were for something and against nothing.”

Will that help the women in Sudan? Will this save the girls in Nigeria? Will this eliminate the prejudices, the bullying, the domestic violence, or mass killings? Not today. But I believe that it will eventually result in a more peaceful world. 

May peace prevail on earth!


About the author

Cheryl Gleghorn

Cheryl Gleghorn grew up in Milwaukee, WI where she attended St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church. The second of eight children, she started learning early on the power of love and compassion. Spirituality was her calling. Because of her affiliation with a marketing group while in her early twenties, she was introduced to the world of self-help and positive thinking … which led to the notion that there was probably a connection to God somewhere in all of that. In 1996, Cheryl found Science of Mind; A faith, a philosophy, and a way of life. This is the connection to God she was looking for. This movement was started by Dr Ernest Holmes in the early part of the twentieth century... In 2002, after several years of study, she became a licensed practitioner under the umbrella of United Church of Religious Science (later- Centers for Spiritual Living). Today she attends the Center for Spiritual Living in Bradenton, FL. Cheryl teaches this philosophy, does spiritual coaching, gives prayer support, leads meditation and facilitates visioning groups. Contact the author.

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