Today is International Day
What if the whole world stopped fighting? Idealistic thought, isn’t it?
What if you did not fight with your spouse, or your neighbor, or have angry thoughts toward the President of the United States, or you smiled at the check-out clerk when she made a mistake and forgot to put the chicken you just paid for in your grocery bag? What if you didn’t take other’s mistakes as a personal affront to your own character?
What if two countries sat down today to talk about making peace between them? What if we talked to one another before jumping to a conclusion? What if, what if, what if?
Jumping to conclusions. Now, that’s something I see and feel often. The hair on the back of my neck (not that I have much hair there, but still!) stands up when a person prejudges my actions or speech without inquiring as to what was the meaning or intention or energy behind it. Peace does not live there.
I vow to speak clearer and more honestly and realize it is not the fault of the other for a misunderstanding but my responsibility to be clearer, choose my words better, keep trying to unpack my thoughts and not give up. It’s the other’s responsibility to listen and desire to communicate.
Many years ago, in my 20’s I decided that the only way to have peace in the world would be to find it within myself first. When I thought about peace, I focused on my heart. That’s a task to take on. It’s taken me 40 years to know a little about what “heart” is.
Heart has no words, it is feeling, a knowing (but not so much a knowing with the mind, the mind is secondary, turning feeling into words), it is having a sense of movement, action. Heart is often a feeling of being compelled, without mind interfering with the logistics. Heart is common, it’s connection, it is the great web of life.
So, when I think now of heart, I imagine the world wide web of connection between all beings, including people. What I mean is: Everything in the world is connected by heart, the energy of emotion, the energy of life. In ancient Chinese medicine, the Laws of Nature speak well and thoroughly about this emotional connection. I feel it is still, after many thousands of years, viable as a template for deeply understanding the emotional connection between the elements of nature, plants, animals, weather, and humans. This template is wisdom for our times.
I am going to suggest that when one jumps to a conclusion, it becomes wrapped in doubt and misunderstanding, which leads to negative emotions. A stalemate can occur and a thwarting of connection ensues. The heart gets cut out of the equation and the web of life gets broken. Strife and conflict can be a result of the concretization of one’s actions in the mind of another. Fear overrides the ability to communicate and communication is stifled. Disconnect hurts the heart.
As humans, a simple antidote to chaos, confusion, strife, bitterness, resignation, and disconnect could be to inquire. Ask a simple question. Agree to not hold the other in a concretized conclusion, but look for one percent of agreement or commonality. Start there. See how connection grows back to a natural state of common heart.
Today is International Day of Peace. Can we not make assumptions but open up to imagine that the Other is Another of Myself? A great word in the Mayan language, of which dialect I do not know, “In La’Kesh” speaks to this act of seeing yourself in another and vice versa. This could bring Peace to our world if everyone did this.