It’s hard to read the news these days. With so much strife and antagonism being reported on every page or webpage, it seems as though war and violence have broken out across the planet.
People of good will feel helpless in the face of such global forces. Many wish to know how flaring tempers can be cooled down and whether peace can ever be brought about. How can we talk out our differences and find common ground when no one seems to be listening?
Interestingly, many of the great souls who have shared their wisdom across the ages speak of the one place where all peace starts, and it’s not in trying to change others or change the world. The place where peace begins lies within the hearts and minds of individuals who have done the inner work of self-discovery.
We think we should be able to change others, but no one can make anyone want to find peace. And that is not our job as seekers of an enlightened life. Our job is to follow the inner path to the peace within ourselves. If enough people took that personal responsibility, the world would in fact change, but again, whether other people do what we do and what comes of our efforts is not in our control. We just must do what we can to undergo an inner transformation to a peaceful self. Then we have done our part, and we can live in a turbulent world without being torn apart ourselves.
Here are the words of wise individuals, coming to us from across the centuries, that point to the path that leads to genuine peace:
If you are inwardly free from fighting, no one will be able to fight with you. — Taoism (circa 500 – 400 B.C.E)
The mind is never right but when it is at peace within itself: the spirit is in heaven even while it is in the flesh, if it be emptied of its imperfections, and taken up with divine thoughts and contemplation. — Seneca (4 B.C.E. – 65 A.D.)
I call that mind free which is not passively framed by outward circumstances, which is not swept away by the torrent of events, which is not the creature of accidental impulse, but which bends events to its own improvement, and acts from an inward spring, from immutable principles which is has deliberately espoused. — William Ellery Channing (1780 – 1842)
To find the permanent amid all the changes of life, and, having found it, adhere to it under all circumstances… this only is true happiness, this only is salvation and lasting peace. — James Allen (1864 – 1912)
There is only one great life. I can enter into the experience only if I have first come to unity in myself, only if I have come to be whole. — Jeanne de Salzmann (1889 – 1990)
And finally, here are encouraging words from OneJourney founder Guy Finley:
Being at peace, and learning to live with quiet confidence — even as the world spins wildly around us — begins as we realize within us the presence and power of an interior stillness that neither needs, nor searches for, anything outside of itself in order to quietly know itself. — Guy Finley (1949)
All this timeless wisdom carries one consistent message. If we want to know the beauty of peace, we must work to find it within ourselves. In a world filled with strife and sorrow, we can find a peace that cannot be lost in even the most difficult conditions. When we step out into the world from that place of peace within, we are able to bear whatever happens without losing our true self. At the same time, we carry with us a healing balm that in fact may play a part in helping others discover this new path to peace within themselves.
But where can we find the guidance to make this important inner discovery? Throughout the millennia the great sages have helped seekers along this secret path. Guy Finley is a modern day master whose books and talks have helped millions around the world. You are invited to explore the wealth of material he provides at his website, www.guyfinley.org.
Guy has written numerous books, many of which have been best sellers. If you’re not familiar with his work, this is a perfect time to be introduced to it through one of his most beloved books, The Courage to Be Free, which is currently being offered at a special price as we enter the holiday season. Here are the details:
Now You Can Discover The Courage to Be Free, and Share It With Others
The Courage to Be Free is about reconnecting with who we really are. Its intriguing message is that we were not born with the persistent negative thoughts and feelings most of us carry around all day – the ones that fill us with self-doubt and limit our possibilities. As Guy tells us, none of that is part of our “original equipment.” We’re meant to be free. Free as an eagle soaring across the sky.
So why don’t we know that? There’s a great deception that’s been played on us that this book uncovers. And it does it in a delightful way that can appeal to people of all ages. This book is for all of us who feel held back daily, whether it’s being unable to speak our heart, or make the decision we really want, or live with integrity. In its pages are new ways to look at ourselves and our lives, and practical methods we can use to start developing real self-command.
Here’s one of my favorite quotes from the book. See if it doesn’t stir something within you:
When you realize no one else on this earth can be like you…that no other soul may know the beauty, sorrow, light and darkness you alone are given to see… then you will, at last, be the fearless individual your Heart of hearts has called you to be. — Guy Finley, The Courage to Be Free
Doesn’t that make you want to stop worrying what others think about you and start living from your true self? You’ll come away from reading this book with new enthusiasm for life and your ability to face whatever it brings.
The Courage to be Free is a lovely little hardback book with a cheerful, colorful cover. It has a bright, festive look that makes it the perfect gift – one that is so much more than just sending good wishes. You’d be giving your friends and loved ones a source of wisdom they will enjoy now and that they can turn to again and again when they want an infusion of genuine encouragement. Click here to get the book at the Life of Learning Foundation store >>
Finally, to return to our theme of “peace,” remember that even in a scary world filled with anger and discord, we each have the ability to find the true source of peace within ourselves. Do the inner work to find the place of peace waiting inside of you, and you will have new strength to face whatever life may bring.
Dr. Ellen Dickstein
The OneJourney Project
PS: You are invited to join Guy Finley’s FREE talks on these life-transforming ideas. He speaks every Wednesday evening and Sunday morning, and all his talks are livestreamed! For details visit guyfinley.org/freeclass