Last year I asked people to keep the faith, but what do I have in mind for a more tranquil ’22?
Now I know the words “tranquil” and “2022” don’t immediately spring to mind for most people – probably closer to “trample” – but I am aiming for a more peaceful existence this year and I’d like you to join me in this theme of peace.
Despite appearances and the fact that I’ve been called “The Dalai Marto” a few times, I’m more accustomed to finding myself in states of conflict, turmoil and restlessness than peace. Whilst I’m more a fan of the latter than the former, evidenced by the post I did in October titled “Inner Peace”, it has been something I’ve struggled with all my life despite making a concerted effort to achieve it. If you wish to create peace in the world you must at first be at peace with yourself.
“So, this year I intend doing what I can to be in a state of peace – which may involve not doing as much as doing.”
I’m not oblivious to the current state of the world; there is still a lot of upheaval, unrest and unhealthy situations around the globe making peace feel like a luxury. I believe, however, that our power to deal with and overcome adversity is one of the great things that makes us human. “The calm before the storm”, as the old saying goes, but we have the ability to be calm during it also.
“If people aimed more towards peace and less towards defeating others what a better world we would live in.”
Too many times I’ve seen relationships deteriorate or fully disintegrate because at least one partner, if not both, are always trying to defeat the other in arguments. Now, of course there are going to be disagreements in relationships and generally anything of serious value is going to generate contention, but perhaps if you aimed towards being at peace with your partner instead of winning against them maybe you’d have a better relationship. This doesn’t mean you act like a doormat or constantly try and smooth things over – because the relationship will usually end at a similar point this way too – but you realise how you are both flawed beings and you both have probably done something stupid or to irritate the other. It’s not about “living happily ever after”, but ask yourself this: perhaps we could try for a relatively peaceful existence more often than not?
“Realising the extent of what we don’t know and how we could be wrong is an important step towards achieving peace.”
It requires effort to aim for peace. It’s more difficult to do, part of the reason why people find it easier to remain in conflict or angry or frustrated or resentful. Achieving peace in one’s life usually involves the idea of being indifferent to what makes no difference, to quote a famous Roman Emperor.
The art of war has certainly been developed and fine-tuned by humans across time, but I wish we committed at least as many resources to the art of peace. However, sometimes we fight for peace – ironic, isn’t it? – like Neo in The Matrix. Other times, “peace be the journey” like in Cool Runnings.
So I rhetorically ask again, why peace?
“Mostly, I'm tired of people being ugly to each other. I'm tired of all the pain I feel and hear in the world every day”, like John Coffey from The Green Mile.
Let 2022 be the year we adjust the sails towards peace and steer away from its opposites.