Thursday, June 30, 2016

Peace Work

If in our daily life we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it.  This is the most basic kind of peace work.”
-Thich Nhat Hanh
Like many people I am weary of nightly newscasts that talk about mass killings, terrorist attacks, and all manner of bad behavior.  I know life is complicated and there is much injustice in the world but many people seem to have no other goal in life than to wreak mayhem on other people.  I truly believe that 99% of all the people in the world, regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual preference, want the same things.  People want to live their life in peace.  They want to be happy.  They want to take care of their families.  They want to work and provide the basic necessities of life for their spouses and children.  They want to laugh and feel joy.  They want to enjoy life and not be overwhelmed with hardship and suffering.  Many of us have these things but I recently read that 60,000,000 people in the world have been displaced by all the wars currently being waged.  This doesn’t include the homeless people or the hungry in affluent places like the United States.  Compared to the suffering of millions of people around the world, those of you reading these thoughts have much to smile about.  You probably live in peace even if you don’t feel blissfully happy every day.  Count your blessings and smile.  I try to smile at every person who I have direct eye contact with even if they are a stranger.  It is rare for them not to smile back.  You cannot truly smile and be full of hate.  We are all human beings on the same planet who mostly want the same things.  Work for peace wherever you are.  Start with a smile.    

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