How To Live In Peace: Images of A Happy Life
Live In Peace and Harmony
Want To Live In Peace?
In the ancient Hindu epic, the "Ramayana", there is a passage where Rama, a young prince who is believed to be God born as a human being, is supposed to be made King the next day, and his people are the Happiest people in the world because they love him so much...
The night before the ceremony, however, an evil influence overtakes Rama's Stepmother, ans instead of being crowned King, Rama is unjustly exiled by his father and ordered to spend 14 years in the forest as a wondering beggar, enduring hardships and dangers. Now the people of the Kingdom are upset and are the Unhappiest people in the world. Everyone in the Kingdom is totally freaked out except for two people; Prince Rama himself and the family's old Wise man, Vashishta.
One of the townspeople urged Rama to disobey his father and to overthrow his crown and to take over the throne. Rama calmly says, however, "Give up your anger. The Palace or the Forest are the same to me..."
This is an important paradox for us to understand along our personal, Spiritual Journeys; "The Palace or the Forest are the same to me." They are the same in what way? Certainly not the same in comfort, safety, wealth, or social comfort.
Now some of you brothers have been down for a long time and many of you have come a long way on your path. We know that paths often change, cross, incline and sometimes, altogether, seem to come to a stop. Eventually, when we stop staring down at our own feet, we see that the path always continues.
For me personally, I realized that I was blinded by staring down at my feet, and until recently, I clouded my path with negative thoughts, influences, and behaviors. It takes the wisest of men to see beyond ourselves. When I first raised my head my senses became overwhelmed; the sun was to bright and I felt lost and alone.
After a while I began to heal and learn and now I feel that I am back on the path and walking at a good place; I feel that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. I am not superstitious and I don't believe in sheer coincidence. I am here for a reason and I believe that a large part of that was to meet you brothers as you have helped me get on my path. I am thankful to all of you but I am in greater debt to the Great Spirit for guiding me to this circle.
As most of you know, I will be leaving this place soon. I will never forget any of you and you will always be in my prayers. I see and feel the strength of the Circle and the Circle is only as strong as each of you Brothers.
When we are truly where we are supposed to be, and I mean Spiritually, not physically, then it really doesn't matter where we are. Yes, everyone would rather be somewhere other than where they are, especially those who live in war zones, prisons, and other less fortunate places in the world. No matter where we are, however, the way of life is a series of these paths in motion, and life is always the same. An endless procession of events that make us happy or sad; act or react; stop or move forward.
The worldly person in us sees good times and bad times, big days and little days, while the old wise man deep inside of us sees everyday as an equal opportunity to make choices that will design the future of our path.
People who hold on to dramas will never find peace, because the events of their lives will keep them dancing like puppets on a string, happy or sad only from the direction of the force that moves them.
The Warrior and the Wise man both have their place inside of us. The warrior in us is in the World while the Wise Man is not of this world. Our warrior-self must keep the action moving, must do what is right, take a stand, get involved on the side of what is good, while our deeper self stays still and reminds us that right and wrong will always be constant outside forces completely in tension with each other and we will never have complete control over our destiny.
The warrior acts responsibly while the Sage reminds us that life is a great mystery, a great adventure story, and not just an endless battle between right and wrong; it is about Balance.
No matter where our paths take us and even though we will all eventually become separated, we are united and guided by the same Great Spirit, the Great Mystery. I don't pray for our paths to become easy or smooth but for all of us to have the guidance and understanding, knowledge and wisdom, and the power to move forward from whatever temporary circumstances we may encounter.
Someday we will leave this place and enter into the other world. It is my Hope that each of us can learn to live with peace, both in society as well as in ourselves. With this, I say, A-ho.
Images of PeaceClick thumbnail to view full-size
Essays and Poems of J.S.Matthew
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