Wednesday, August 10, 2011

3 Levels of Peace -Centered Living

Peace starts with me. It's true but what does that mean? To me it means that in every aspect of life I must be an agent of peace and love. After much thought, I've devised a plan that works on three levels - personal, community, and world.

Personal - My family deserves unconditional love. When my children and my husband go to bed at night I want them to know they are cherished not for what they do but for the simple fact that they exist and are worthy of all the good in life. My words to them should come from a place of compassion and guidance, not from anger and control.

This picture is a visual reminder of how important it is to give this kind of love to my family. Last year I learned I needed Chemotherapy to cure my cancer. That meant within two weeks of beginning treatment I would lose my hair. In an attempt to confront this problem with a little grace, I decided to shave my head. My husband, who'd had long hair since college, shaved his head too. This is what I think of when I need a reminder of how I wish to love my family.

Community - My community needs my involvement. It needs my smiles and words of encouragement. It needs my vote and my voice. It needs to know what I care about and that I care enough to not look the other way, otherwise egregious laws against humanity will go unchallenged. My natural community needs me to protect it and to teach my children to respect it. It needs me to recognize and honor our symbiosis.

There is happiness to be found in working toward goals that make my surroundings a peaceful place to be, a place that respects life, justice, and equality. There is happiness in insuring that future generations will be able to enjoy places like Rainbow Falls in Mammoth Lakes, CA. Sometimes this may require going against the accepted point of view. It may require civil disobedience when an unjust law or social norm needs to be changed...and oddly enough, in those acts I expect to find peace in honoring what I feel is right.

World - My world deserves peace. Not one child needs to die because there is nothing to eat or because a government decided to drop bombs on his playground. World peace means valuing human life and liberty all over the planet, not just in my country. I want to live in a nation that is a humanitarian superpower instead of a military superpower (quoted from Howard Zinn). I can only imagine what this world would be like if we never again gave into our leaders cries for war and never stopped demanding true equality.

I do not believe that war is our nature. Compassion is our nature but culture makes it difficult to act on our natural disposition. A society is backwards when it's beating the drums of war in the name of freedom instead of freeing those in the bondage of starvation, poverty, and discrimination. I'll use my energies looking for ways to behave with love instead of participating in a government's reasons to kill righteously.

Here is Ashley Jo Farmer singing a haunting version of John Lennon's Imagine. Peace does start with me, and you, one person at a time.


SwordBrujo said...

I am glad you are back to writing. As I have said in the past--I very much enjoy reading your blog.

You are indeed a rare jewel. Thank you for sharing your perspective.


Lisa McGlaun said...


Thanks for commenting. I appreciate what you said on FB about a true warrior being a pacifist at heart. If by warrior you mean a person who fights for what they believe in then I can wholeheartedly agree with you.

Best Wishes..I'm sure I will see you soon.


Janet Gardner said...

Peace does begin with you. I agree. "Be the change that you want to see in the world" Gandhi

Lisa McGlaun said...


Gandhi had it right...about so many things. Great example. So glad you are in my son's school being the example for him.