Peace is Present

Peace is Present

Peace is Present

 

Peace is present right here and
now, in ourselves and in
everything we do and see. The
question is whether or not we are
in touch with it. We don’t have to
travel far away to enjoy the blue
sky. We don’t have to leave our
city or even our neighborhood to
enjoy the eyes of a beautiful child.
Even the air we breathe can be a
source of joy.
~ Thich Nhat Hanh

 

Everything Depends on Your Steps

From: The Long Road Turns to Joy

By Thich Nhat Hanh

The seed of mindfulness is in us, but we usually forget to water it.
We think that happiness is possible only in the future-when we get
a house, a car, a Ph.D. We struggle in our mind and body, and we
don’t touch the peace and joy that are available right now-the blue
sky, the green leaves, the eyes of our beloved. What is most
important? Many people have passed exams and bought houses and
cars, and yet they are still unhappy. What is most important in life is
to find peace and to share it with others. To have peace, you can
begin by walking peacefully. Everything depends on your steps.

Read selected poems from Thich Nhat Hanh

Read quotations and excerpts from Thich Nhat Hanh

More Buddhist writings on Allspirit

 

Sure Heart’s Release

From After the Ecstasy, the Laundry:
How the Heart Grows Wise on the Spiritual Path

by Jack Kornfield

For almost everyone who practices, cycles of awakening and
openness are followed by periods of fear and contraction.
Times of profound peace and newfound love are often over-
taken by periods of loss, by closing up, fear, or the discovery
of betrayal, only to be followed again by equanimity or joy. In
mysterious ways the heart reveals itself to be like a flower that
opens and closes. This is our nature. The only surprising thing is
how unexpected this truth can be. It is as if deep down we all
hope that some experience, some great realization, enough years
of dedicated practice, might finally lift us beyond the touch of
life, beyond the mundane struggles of the world. We cling to
some hope that in spiritual life we can rise above the wounds of
our human pain, never to have to suffer them again. We expect
some experience to last. But permanence is not true freedom,
not the sure heart’s release.

More from Jack Kornfield

More Buddhist writings on Allspirit

 

Prayers

Power of Prayer

The following question was asked on the Allspirit Yahoo Group and these are the responses received.

Julie: If there would be something positive to pray for in that our world we live in would change,what would it be? World peace would be my favorite.

Ingrid:

I would have to pray for a cure for AIDS. 200 children are born daily in my country who are HIV positive. Over 40 million worldwide and counting. This disease is having a profound effect on our lives and the sad fact of the matter is that we don’t even realise how much.

Gill:

… that everybody recognise at what an alarming rate we are destroying the earth which nurtures us and supports us.

donovajz:

I would pray that everyone here on Earth would recognize their God-given talents and have the pleasure of utilizing it to the best of their abilities.

Pam:

If everyone recognized and utilized their God-given talents we probably would have that cure for AIDS and a much healthier environment….

Willow:

I would want there to be enough food for everybody, everywhere.

Christopher:

Oh gosh, there are so many things one might wish to change! I suppose I will give away my bias as an educator, and would pray for greater respect for the love of beauty and of the life of the mind. Maybe my perspective is skewed by the fact that I am an American, for the US has always had an anti-intellectualist tradition. But of late it seems as if vulgarity and violence are becoming increasingly tolerated in our culture. Now at the risk of sounding like a member of the radical Christian right, I will also note that I would pray for increased interfaith understanding. In terms of religious tolerance, we do seem to be moving into the era of universal understanding and mutual respect that was dreamt of some one hundred years ago by leaders such as Sri Vivekananda. Yet there are so many voices urging a retreat into the notion that “we have the one true religion.”

elaine:

What would I pray for and want to happen so that the world might change and there be peace? I am reminded of Gandhi, loosely quoted here, saying “Be the change you want.” Thich Nhat Hanh, similarly, said something like “Peace is every step.” St. Francis prayed, “Lord, Make me an instrument of Thy Peace.”

We cannot change the world (or so i believe), but we can change ourselves, and the rest will follow.

Now, what do i want to change about myself? Or better said, what do i want to real-ize within myself and my service to the world?

Fanaseeker:

I laud St. Francis’ prayer and would add:

“God, make me an instrument of Thy Love.”

My wish for myself and for the world? To become more loving. . .

Deborah:

I would pray for a change in human hearts–so that we would all possess hearts of compassion–it’s what ALL the religions teach–Jesus, Buddha, Gandhi and others. If we could melt our hearts of stone (read: fear, greed) into hearts of compassion, then all else would follow–world peace, coexistence with all of God’s creatures, the proper and equitable use of resources. But we have to be willing to change ourselves. To pray blindly for others to change is not the point.

Sandy:

…I’m coming to believe that the call I’m experiencing, a call to silence, to simplicity, to surrender, has an effect on the planet. Basically, because I know there are others around the globe who are responding in an honest attempt to become more fully human, too. Just as I don’t understand how a butterfly gently flapping its wings can affect our weather patterns, I don’t understand how my simple “yes” to Mystery can have a positive effect, but I believe it does. From that will come small, possibly ever-so-small, changes. But I have to remind myself that there is no goal. Only Love. Also, there’s a tendency in me to “look beyond” when I probably need to look right under my nose and better love and serve those who I spend my days with.

Christine:

I pray daily for all people to love unconditionally and understand one another, and treat the earth and all creatures upon it with great respect.

Gerri:

My prayer is for increased love in the world. It seems to be something concrete we can actually do every day to improve our own little spot in the world:

“Love gives life to the lifeless. Love lights a flame in the heart that is cold. Love brings hope to the hopeless and gladdens the heart that is sorrowful.” (‘Abdu’l-Baha)

Adrienne:

to add to gerri’s prayer….not only to have more love in the world…but to also have more love of the world.

Carol:

I pray that the world finds peace, through recognition of our oneness.

Prayers for Peace

More Spiritual Writings