Franciscan Youth Movement
  • Moderator: Ms. Glynn
FYM Peacemakers Gallery

                                           

CLICK HERE: To access the FYM Peacemaker Playlist on Spotify

Reflection on Peace        

    What is peace? According to the dictionary, peace is defined as “Freedom from disturbance; tranquility; a state or period in which there is no war or a war has ended.” This is a fairly good explanation, but the dictionary only gives one aspect of peace. The dictionary gives us part of the answer to what peace is, but gives no information about who it affects, where it may be found, when it comes around, why it exists, or how it works. I hope to give you a thought-provoking reflection on what peace truly is, in all its aspects, and in all its forms.

The What. Although the dictionary gives an overall definition of peace, I would like to define what it is further. Like the dictionary says, peace is most certainly a state of being, but it is not necessarily limited to the period between two wars. Peace is a thing that you have but can’t hold, thus it is known as an abstract noun. Peace is inner tranquility, but also energy. It is an endless supply of energy, unlike rage, that can be tapped into through meditation and reflection. Peace gives those who have it the strength to help people and solve problems. Peace is free-flowing, meaning that it is offered to all who seek it. It is bountiful, yet rare. So many resort to hatred and vileness that sometimes it seems that peace is meant for the elite. This is false. Peace is meant for all, and it would be the true pinnacle of humanity to establish it universally.

The Who. Peace has existed ever since the universe has calmed down enough to allow the beautiful dance of orbiting planets around stars. Peace is what started when the stage was set, and it spread to every corner of the universe. The diffusal of peace did not skip over our oasis of life. It exists here. It lives in those who seek it. The people who have embodied peace past and present, like Saint Francis and Mahatma Gandhi, but also everyday conflict solvers like teachers and parents and so many others, these people are numerous and are spread throughout the world. People of every race, religion, and creed are called to promote peace between each other and to bring peace to every living creature. Peace is sewn into the very fabric of reality, it is the state of being at rest. More importantly, peace is something that the multitude possesses and gives to everything. Peaceful people bring tranquility, bring peace, where there is turmoil and where people believe that peace is lost.

The Where. Peace is found everywhere. Although there are fluctuations in the level of peace at any certain time and place, there is always a baseline level of peace. It is never fully missing from anywhere, it’s just harder to find in some places. Peace can be found within some people and animals, and also within everyday phenomena like the sunrise and snow. Peace is an energy that exists everywhere in an infinite amount. Peace exists where there is serenity and stillness, obviously. Peace is a wonderful thing, though. It exists everywhere, even the darkest places, even if in only small amounts. Peace even manifests itself as a small plant or tiny lizard in the middle of a battlefield. There is always a tiny token of goodness to remind us that all hope is never lost, only diminished at times, and that through peaceful reflection it can be restored.

The When. Peace has existed for a very long time. The very long stretch of overall peace was broken in the year 2700 B.C. when the first war was fought in ancient Mesopotamia between Sumer and Elam. Since then, humanity has known peace as the interval between two wars. Peace has also become one of the main aspects of many world religions. Peace becomes a lifestyle in that way. War highlights the goodness of peace just as peace highlights the horridness of war. War takes away the gifts that peace gives us, such as clarity, sanity, strength, happiness, and drive. War helps us to better appreciate the times when there is no war, and encourages us to make an effort to avoid war in the future. Although peace had a beginning, it will have no end. Peace cannot be removed or destroyed, only changed into energy. Peace will continue to exist in our universe as long as there still is happiness and goodness.

The Why. Peace exists simply because we are born as innocent, good, and docile babies. Peace is the lullaby sung by a mother, and the feel of the breeze on an autumn day, and even the sight of the moon in the night. Peace exists everywhere around us, even in our busy and anxious world. Peace is silence, but it is also the song of a bird and the rustle of leaves. These things are peaceful because they are good. They are good because they were made to be that by our creator for whom we exist. Peace exists to put an end to conflicts small and large. It is the eraser for the chalkboard, because it undoes the messiness that we create for ourselves and allows us to begin fresh and anew. It is peace that descended on the faithful and gave them the strength to bring good news and glad tidings everywhere. Through peace we are reborn and given newfound strength and fervor to deal with the challenges of life that await.

The How. In a perfect universe, peace would exist within all the members of the human family, and beyond, at 100% capacity. This is merely an unachievable goal, however, since perfection cannot exist among imperfect creatures. Peace, therefore, exists more as a gradient among humans. Since a gradient consists of two parts, the opposite end of the spectrum is wrath/rage. Those who practice meditation and who are peacemakers have a higher peace percentage than those who find it funny to harm others and cause discord. Peace comes about when we let go of the turmoil that exists within us. Thus, a measure of someone’s peacefulness is directly related to their ability to let go of grudges and thoughts of revenge. Those who take rage and revenge into their souls are wrathful, and those who let most of the negativity that comes their way roll off their shoulders and into the wind are peaceful. There are people in the middle who are neither extreme, and these people have the potential to become very great or very blinded. It is when we choose peace and instruct peace that we are able to begin to heal others that have been hurt by hate.

Peace and all its aspects, (who, what, where, when, and why) are very important. Each aspect affects our daily lives. Is there peace within our world and within our country? Is there peace amongst ourselves? Peace is the way by which we will diffuse the tensions that sometimes seem to encircle us. Peace gives us a plan to a better life for us and for the future generations that will inhabit the Earth also.

Reflection thoughtfully written by FYM Peacemaker Giovanni Picone


CLICK HERE: To access the FYM Peacemakers Art Reflections Booklet

CLICK HERE: To access the FYM Peacemakers Biblical Reflections Booklet

CLICK HERE: To access additional peacemaker gallery entries



Lord, make me an instrument of your peace!

OR CREATE YOUR OWN PEACE REFLECTION


a written reflection on peace, a artistic rendering of peace (drawn or painted), a playlist of songs focuses on peace, 
a video clip of you speaking about peace, a meditation script on peace, a list of bible passages that discuss peace 

email Ms. Glynn [email protected] for your work to be included in the gallery!

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