Peace on Earth
Dec 04, 2015 11:20AM
● By Seijaku Roshi
If we really want peace in the world, we must slow down and give the means for peace time. We must slow our pace and our drive toward success and consumption. Too many of us want peace but do not want to do the work necessary for it. Peace cannot be realized in the acceptable cultural and social pace we normally live our lives. As I often say, “Our modern society is not conducive for well-being or the peace of mind which manifests through the body and out into the world.”
What the world needs more than jobs, more money, armies and messianic leaders, are people of peace. It needs you and me to be about the business of creating peace in our hearts, our homes, our neighborhoods and in our nation, before we go and try to create it anywhere else. If we do not create it within ourselves, how can we expect to even see it anywhere else? If we do not have it in our homes, why are we so surprises to not find it in our neighborhoods and streets? Why do we work so hard to create it in other parts of the world when in our own back yards another forgotten war goes on?
Meditation, contemplation, prayer, ritual, reading sacred teachings and all the activities of a truly spiritual community are aimed at purifying heart and mind, and the development of character. Too much of what is sold as spiritual these days is sold as just another means to acquire the things of the world. I could never understand this especially when all the ancients have pointed to “being in the world but not of it”. Authentic Spirituality requires the renunciation of all deluded images of ourselves and socio-economic values in order that we can effectively meet the difficult demands of life in its exacting truth.
December is a time of holiness and peace for Buddhist and Christians alike. The Buddha’s enlightenment is celebrated on the 8th of December, and the birth of Jesus on December 25. Both teachers came to show us a means toward Peace-on-Earth, but their message was like a sword which cut through the conventional and acceptable beliefs of their time. Spirituality is this same sword—it cuts through our complacency, our laziness, our comfort zones—in order to open our hearts which are closed to the real truth and solutions for the world. It opens our hearts so that we may feel our own pain and the pain of others. It opens our hearts so that our light, the Light of the World, may shine on our path so that we may know the way back to each other.
You are the Buddha; you are the Christ. Let your light shine for yourself and the world this holiday season.
See you on the mountain top!
Seijaku Roshi is an American Zen Master, parent, Buddhist Priest, author, life coach, keynote speaker, and visionary pioneer of the principles of Authentic Spirituality. He is the founder of The Zen Society and Abbot of Pine Wind Zen Community/Jizo-an Monastery, in Shamong, NJ. For more information, call 609-268-9151 or visit TheZenSociety.org.