Peace…An Inside Job

I think that peace comes from within, and in order for there to be any world peace we are first going to have to learn to be at peace with ourselves.  That is a pretty tall order in this society.  So many religions and philosophies tell us that the way to peace is to let go.  Let go of ourselves and our wants and our “needs” and our cravings…just let it go and have faith that all will be provided and that we are okay.  I believe that it is true.  Even pragmatically, I can see where if I were not always clinging to what I want and how I think things should be, I would be at complete and total peace with myself.  But the instant I open my eyes in the morning, I am assaulted by advertising telling me how my life should be and how inadequate it currently is.  If it is not commercial advertising, it is plain old people advertising.  We have a tendency to try and sell ourselves as the Joneses no matter what the truth may be.  We want bigger houses, fancier cars, smoother skin, flatter bellies…all so that everyone else can aspire to be in our enviable positions.  If we’re not trying to sell it, we’re trying to buy it.  Even our relationships we tally and count and cling to so that we can show the world that we are loved.  We blame the advertisers, but aren’t they just giving us what we want?  If we did not buy into all that advertising, they would just have to take their products and services and go home.  But what if we were really to just let it all go?  What if we were to truly live like the Lilies of the Fields and just bask in the sun and in the love of God?  The inner peace that we would find would be exactly what it is that each and every one of us has been looking for our whole lives.  Can we do that?  Is it even possible?

“We cling, we crave, we assert ourselves, and we live in a homemade hell.  We become detached, and we live in peace.  I show you sorrow the Buddha had said – and I show you the ending of sorrow”.

Aldous Huxley


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