Unity of Monroe Unleash Your Divine Potential: Peace September 3, 2017
This month we participate in and celebrate Unity’s World Day of Prayer with it’s theme of Peace in the Midst. September is also International Peace Day on the 21st and while there are often opportunities to participate and learn more on the art of Peace through Peacemaking classes and workshops, the focus needs to be on how we show up and how we take a stand in love, honor and respect for all life. Even in the midst of a sea of change going on. Even as it stated in one church announcement that "The Peacemaking workshop scheduled for today has been canceled due to a conflict.” Seems only appropriate because our peace usually does get cancelled due to the conflicts we hold within ourselves. The word peace is derived from the Latin word Pax meaning "to make an agreement." To be centered in peace is to be in agreement with life which means to understand what conflict is and to move through it to resolution instead of wallowing in it. While we may see or be experiencing a world that is seemingly going through all kinds of hell these are also corresponding states of mind that we as a whole are projecting. We can choose to live in hell or experience heaven right here on earth and peace is the way through and into heaven on earth.
Like the story of the samurai warrior who traveled to the distant home of an old monk. On arriving he burst through the door and bellowed, "Monk, tell me! What is the difference between heaven and hell?" The monk sat still for a moment on the floor. Then he turned and looked up at the warrior. "You call yourself a samurai warrior," he smirked. "Why, look at you. You're nothing but a mere sliver of a man!" "What!!" cried the samurai, as he reached for his sword. "Aha!" said the monk. "I see you reach for your sword. I doubt you could cut off the head of a fly with that." The samurai was so infuriated that he could not hold himself back. He pulled his sword from its sheath and lifted it above his head to strike off the head of the old monk. At this the monk looked up into his seething eyes and said, "That, my son, is the gate to hell." Realizing that the monk had risked his life to teach this lesson, the samurai slowly lowered his sword and put it back into the sheath. He bowed low to the monk in thanks for this teaching. "My friend," said the monk, "That is the gate to heaven."
We begin this month with the Divine Idea that we can all Unleash our Divine Potential through understanding that our own peacefulness contributes to our planet. One way we can do so is through a ceremony for peace or ritual to honor peace in other lands and on our planet. Life is full of ritual when you think about it. We have social customs and celebrations for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and many different life passages. We celebrate holidays with valued traditions that have been passed down through the centuries. Christmas would not be Christmas without Christmas decor and Thanksgiving wouldn’t be as special without the annual feast. I believe that whenever human beings are faced with challenges alone, in groups, or in society, they develop ritual. Rituals give significance to life’s important passages. They provide form and guidance to our lives in times of grief, peril, uncertainty and celebration.
Ritual has three specific characteristics. First, it occurs in a unique social space, set apart from everyday life. Second, communication operates through symbols and emotions rather than relying primarily on words or rational thought. In ritual, individuals learn by doing and utilize nonverbal communication. Third, ritual confirms and transforms people's world views, identities, and relationships with others. We might take these moments to think that in those un-peaceful moments we GROW through that our anger, frustrations are like fuel - fuel that can launch our dreams and aspirations - not burn the people around us. We can view it as a surge of energy to create what we really want and need as we learn to practice breathing deeply, disarming ourselves and asking, "What do I really want? I can choose peace instead of this!" If we can transform our anger into a higher, more noble vision we take a stand for peace. We step away from the vise of anger and step into the lives we really want. Global peace/inner peace is a personal choice, hour by hour. Ask yourself, "Am I going to add to the fighting in the world? Or offer up something greater?"
Today we offer something greater in our simple way through the ritual of The World Peace Prayer and Flag Ceremony and with the assistance of Carol Whitaker we are going to name each region of our world along with the countries contained in them. Then when you hear the chime we will intone a prayer/blessing/affirmation on that region and the countries contained therein. When you hear each country called it may open your mind up to remember perhaps where your family roots are or maybe you know someone from there, or it may have been a particular country you’ve visited or even be a country that’s presently a hot spot in the world. Bring to your thoughts your own blessing for each country as you hear it named for peace, for the value of love and dignity for all planetary beings. May Peace be in each region and country on Earth, May Peace Prevail On Earth!
One day an elephant saw a hummingbird lying flat on its back on the ground. The bird’s tiny feet were raised up into the air. The elephant said: “What on earth are you doing, Hummingbird?” The hummingbird replied: “I have heard that the sky might fall today. If that should happen, I am ready to do my bit in holding it up.” Laughing the elephant shot back: “Do you think those tiny feet could hold up the sky?” To which hummingbird said: “Not alone. But each must do what he can. And this is what I can do.” What can you do to hold up the sky for peace? What can we all do to promote and be peace in the world, the peace we desire to see? Unleash and Celebrate your Divine Potential which is the awareness and acceptance of Peace.
Unity of Monroe • 272 Britton Lane • P.O. Box 138 • Monroe, Ohio • 45050 513-539-5103 E-Mail • firstname.lastname@example.org WebSite • unityofmonroe.org
Unity of Monroe, 272 Britton Lane, Monroe, OH 45050 513-539-5103