SEPTEMBER 21, 2019, will be observed as World Peace Day, but that does not mean we should observe this virtue for one day only. We may all have our individual understanding of what peace is, but to have peace means to be free from disturbance — tranquility. Ironically, when we speak about peace, the topic of war arises as well. On a global platform, war has been a way to ‘solve’ one’s issues with another country for centuries and sadly, but not surprisingly, it is still being done today. It is done at the expense of innocent civilians, the money of taxpayers, a green and clean environment, and most importantly, at the expense of world peace. As I was reading to write on this topic, I realised it is not entire countries and nations that actually ‘go to war’; leaders of countries go to war. In other words, human beings elected or given authority, who also have uncontrollable anger issues, with a liking for morbid solutions to problems sees it fit to declare war on another. Now, not to stray from the point that I am trying to make, which is, peace starts with oneself. If there is not peace of mind within us, we will automatically express our negative emotions to others, whether we intend to or not.
If peace is somehow supposed to solve conflicts, then why is it so hard to master? Perhaps, it stems from the idea that peace is not fun or ‘spicy.’ Our weird but innate nature somehow receives adrenaline from certain activities. For example, back in my high school as in many other schools in Guyana, there were physical fights once in a while amongst students. Instead of trying to encourage or even physically remove those involved in the fight, many students chose not to. In fact, there are students who are deemed ‘instigators’ of fights. Somehow, in the minds of those students, it is ‘fun’ to see two other students physically harm each other over issues that could’ve been solved in a matter of seconds, just by communication. That leads me to my next point, which is effective communication to people around you. Let persons be aware of your thoughts and emotions as it relates to their behaviour towards you. Also, a simple apology can save us so much of time and energy.
J. Donald Walters said, “You will find peace not by trying to escape your problems, but by confronting them courageously. You will find peace not in denial, but in victory.” It is important to note that everyone has his/her ways and means of finding self-peace. If you ask me, I would say ‘peace of mind’ should be more of a lifestyle. We should continually practise what gives us our peace. Whether if it consists of writing, meditating, praying to a God, jogging at sunset; just do you. I have come across a meme on social media that read, “Someone once said, ‘a lot of people struggle with sleep at night because sleep requires peace. I felt that’.” Indeed, we cannot focus or complete common tasks if we cannot find peace within ourselves, and yes, that includes sleeping as well. We ought to remember that our actions do impact others around us. If seven billion persons on our planet choose to deny self-peace and allow anger to control them, then there will be the tyrant of the universe- if it isn’t already. For me, there is no other thing that is more beautiful than happiness- the foundation of peace. While I believe world peace is far from reality, it starts with one person at a time. While no one is perfect and we may all have flaws, peace is something we all deserve as human beings. After all, we are all masterpieces trying to master peace.