"Contemporary science tells us we are designed for peace and that our health and longevity depend on it. In fact, our survival as a species requires that we end our investments in war and direct our attention toward solving our many looming challenges. The worldviews that have promoted excessive competition, environmental degradation, increased social inequity, religious bigotry, and perhaps widespread systemic collapse are clearly not adequate to the optimal evolution of our species."
- James O'Dea, Cultivating Peace
Peace is the REAL game changer.
I love this. In this day and age we are inundated with images of what is going wrong. However, we then miss all that is going right. The people who have made it their life's work to bring people together, building bridges instead of destroying them, creating networks, exemplifying their gentle powerful humanity, are the unsung heros of our day. I look to those for inspiration. No, unfortunately they don't make the news. Where media outlets thrive on exploitation, we must not forget this is only a small fragment of reality. The hour may feel dark, but let's not forget, all is not lost, and in the end, it is us we must look to for salvation. It is in our heartfelt connection with each other pacifying our prejudices within ourselves and finding the truth behind the veil, that will heal the wounds of our time.
There is so much that can be done, but first it has to begin within us. There is much work to be done within myself. I know this. Shedding the layers of discontentment, working through my own junk, is an important step to make. However, it can't always be about my own process and pain. Whenever, I live in service it puts a multitude into perspective. It heals. When and how can I add value to a situation instead of taking? Important questions.
Delving into the above book has ignited and energized me on another level. This is not fluff. It asks hard questions and brings striking realizations to the table. It isn't necessarily about being against something but rather being for the values and attributes of peace. It's a practice. Simply naming yourself as an ambassador of peace isn't enough. It isn't about avoiding conflict but rather being comfortable in the mist of it, finding common ground, and ultimately the cord that connects us all.
Do I recommend this book? YES. O'Dea pushes us to be the change we seek.