We all would like a little more peace in our lives, but how do we cultivate it? Do we say nice things? Do we smile at strangers more? Do we forgive people? Do we wear a peace sign around our neck to remind us every time we feel it tugging that we want to be more peaceful? Do we stare at a statue of the Buddha or listen to a CD of a babbling brook?
There are many paths to peace and, likewise, many definitions of what peace is. But for me, what lies at the very heart of peace is one thing: simplicity. And, the good news is…simplicity is available right here, right now.
Through simple living, we allow ourselves to slow down. And when we put the brakes on this frenetic pace of living, we are able to foster gratitude and and compassion. Gratitude for everything that we have; the simple abundance of blue sky, the songs of birds, breath in our lungs and the awareness that enables us to see and be with everything that is. Compassion to consciously embrace that every living this is as entitled to love and we are and that when we allow other things to be known and loved, love blossoms within us.
In our materialistic culture, the name of the game is accumulation. Get, get, get. More, more, more. This competition to acquire and be something to be known for what we have and how important we think we are. All the while, we’re building an ever expanding shell of a life around a profound hollowness and the larger that she’ll grows, the more britttle it becomes and the more work it takes to keep it intact.
When we allow ourselves to humble and graceful, all of life flows to us authentically. We are imbued by realness. Our smiles, our laughter. Our sadness and our pain. Our sensuality. Our gratitude. Everything we are is intended to be experienced as it arises. No ulterior motive and no affectation.
When we are committed to living simply, we begin to realize that it was never a challenge in the first place. The struggle was trying to be inauthentic. And that is where and when the fountain of peace begins to flow and spring forth within us.