of Peace by
Norma Gentile reprinted
by Norma Gentile
What is it that we are praying for when we pray for peace? Are we praying for the lack of conflict? Or are we praying for the outworking of spirit?
War is often the desire of one or more groups to create order according to their own principles. War results when the principles used don't happen to be shared by all those involved. The very action of enforcing rules upon others serves to stifle the motion of spirit towards a natural evolution into peace that all those involved are seeking.
Peace is the action of oneness with spirit. It is the motion of knowing one's own union with spirit that lets each of us move with confidence. Even if we aren't sure quite where we are going! Nonetheless, when we walk with spirit there is an ease, a quality of safety and surround, reassuring us that the path is still under our feet.
Loss, whether through the death of a loved one, or the separation of physically moving away from friends and family, often feels like falling from the path. Our own connection to spirit is mirrored back to us from others. Those we love and care for are spiritual arms and feet and hands; helping, supporting, and walking with us. Separation from those that serve as our mirrors can be traumatic. Where is spirit? The bit that remains within us doesn't seem to be enough. And alone, it isn't enough.
Our ability to love ourselves is first and foremost. But it is served by loving and sharing that love with others. Not only by doing good deeds, but by truly sharing ourselves with those around us.
The sorrow caused by someone moving away or passing on is our own spirit finding a familiar avenue of love blocked. Even when we can easily pick up a phone or make a short journey, shifting how we relate challenges our ability to open and allow love to flow. New circumstances require new forms in order to rebuild intimate connections.
With good friends we may have communed in meditation groups, over lunch, or through daily interactions at work. As the form has dropped away, has our ability to convey the essence of love also been lost? Is the ability to lovingly connect based on the form we have assigned it?
Those who have crossed over embrace their friends and family, watching over them and caring for them by connecting spirit to spirit. We may be aware of their presence, but they are relating even more directly to our spiritual selves. Spirit communes with spirit, and our physical awareness just happens to notice this from time to time.
Praying for peace is a matter of caring yourself and for those in your life. Spend a few moments as you are washing dishes thinking of someone who loves you. It will change the way you handle even the pots and pans.
Then try spending another few minutes appreciating all those who may not be so close to you. Especially someone with whom you have had a misunderstanding. Is there a current of forgiveness you can find naturally coming from within your own self, your own spirit? Allow that forgiveness to be directed towards your own self.
Perhaps by offering this love, this forgiveness, to yourself, some part of you will find peace. And as some part of you comes to rest more deeply in spirit, that offering of peace resonates out to others.
And so the cycle goes. By forgiving yourself you have become the spiritual mirror of healing for another. In the act of self-forgiveness, you become the mirror of peace for those with whom there has been disagreement or misunderstanding.
Separation is the denial of love. Peace is its acknowledgement. May all who read this find new avenues of peaceful and loving connection, near and far.