“Calm water reflects everything. A calm mind reflects nothing?”
Today I want to talk about world peace. What does peace really mean? Think about it for a few moments and ask yourself, “Is the world a peaceful place? Do I feel at peace in my own life? Is peace on Earth really possible or is it mission impossible?”
When you look out at the world, it may seem peaceful to you or it may seem chaotic, and that perception is completely dependent upon your own mind. If you watch the news and believe what they are saying, the world can appear to be in upheaval. But if you walk outside and sit in your yard or at the park for a few minutes and be still, the world no longer seems in trouble. What changed? The answer is, “You actually are experiencing the world in real-time, because you have a calm mind, You are looking at the world through your own eyes—not from memory or through someone else’s eyes or camera lens.”
In reality, the entire universe is doing just fine, including planet Earth. What may not be doing just fine is your perception of life. At a glance, it could appear that our planet is in constant turmoil. Big fish are eating little fish, homeless people are growing in numbers across America, corruptions have crept into many governments around the world, wars are going on, gang violence is infecting every major city, opioid addiction is out of control, mass shootings seem like a regular event, pollution is poisoning our rivers, streams, and ocean, the divorce rate is at 50%, domestic violence is everywhere, and billions are suffering on the planet because they are without clean water or enough food to eat. You may also feel your own life is in turmoil because you are struggling or facing some serious challenges. Where is peace on Earth?
To find peace on Earth, you must stop looking outward and start looking inward. Yes inward. Life on planet Earth is a dog-eat-dog setup that will never change. It is the master plan. All life is interconnected, feeding off each other. There is pain in the process of living—but suffering is always optional. If you buy into what you are taught in school about life, you might believe we are all here to be better than the next person. Life may feel like one big competition and only the pretty people, the smart people, and the rich people can win at this game. Movie stars and celebrities seem to have it made while the rest of the world are just wannabes. It can feel like you must always look out for number one or you will be treated like “number two!”
Social media is running wild in America and around the globe. Why is it so popular? It is popular because it boosts one’s ego. If you make a post showing off yourself or your family, or your dog, or your new car, or your dream vacation, you are basically boasting. “Look at me, I have it made and am having the time of my life,” is the message that is often portrayed by the person making the post. To the viewer of your post, there could be a tinge of jealousy, or some animus feelings, or perhaps even some depression if you wish you too could have such a happy life as the person making the post. By the way, none of what you see on social media is real because of none of it in real-time. It is merely a snapshot or a short video that tells a quick story by allowing you to peek into another person’s life. Watching a movie, viewing social media, seeing a photograph, or hearing a story second-hand are all void of one thing. REALITY. None of it is real. It is just a memory like your own mind does when it reflects on an image or event. Real-time is going on right now, in the present moment. Seeing the dust particles on the screen of your smartphone is in real-time. The images you are viewing are not.
Most of your life is merely a fantasy, a daydream. You are not consciously present. You are not here now. You are reflecting back. You are remembering something that happened a week ago or a year ago. You are viewing your memory vault. You are watching a movie in your own mind of something you saw or heard previously. You are daydreaming and this distracts you from the present moment. Your mind is moving, dreaming, dancing about and there is no peace of mind, and there never will be, until you learn to manage your own mind.
Suffering is caused by resistance to your present moment experience. In other words, when you do not accept what is happening in your life right now and complain that this should not be happening this way, you are suffering. When you stop trying to control people and things you cannot change, suffering ends, and peace begins. When you accept life as it is, your will begin to find peace. It is your own mind gone wild that is the instigator of suffering. It is your own mind that is leading you down a self-centered pathway to suffering. The world is not at fault. Your enemies are not to blame. Your own mind is the villain here. And you are the victim.
Okay, if you are still with me on this post, you may not quite get what I am saying on the surface but deep within it may be striking a chord. You may ponder, “What is The G.O.P. saying? What does he mean when he says my own mind is the problem?” This may all seem ridiculously complicated, but it is not. Trust me on this. What I am sharing with you right now is so simple you may not believe me. You may object. You may feel I am one enchilada short of a combo plate. I am not. I am giving you the whole enchilada. Here it is, so pay close attention. Your life is a lie, a fantasy, and none of it may be real.
Bear with me on this. I promise to tie this into a nice bow for you that can sit high on the peace package I am delivering. Here goes. Your own mind has created “you.” This creation is something I call the “fake you.” Yes, the person you think you are is an imposter, and “you” were invented by the feedback and information you have received from those around you throughout your life, especially when you were very young. When you were a small child, you were a sponge to what you were told. You had no voice of reasoning, so you believed it all. And these beliefs sank deep into your subconscious mind. Those beliefs may be still with you today governing your life. If you were dealt good thoughts of love and praise, your life will reflect this. If you were dealt bad thoughts, put-downs, and no love, your life will reflect this. All the conscious actions and affirmations you engage in are no match for the power of your subconscious mind. It silently is guiding you through life. It silently has created the fake you. It silently is making your life on Earth heaven or hell.
The first step to regaining control of your own mind (and life) is to meditate daily. Meditation is very easy to do. Find a quiet place to sit. Set a timer for 15 minutes, sit up straight, close your eyes, and count your breaths from one to 10 (each inhales and exhale is one count). If you lose count along the way, do not fret. Just start back at one and continue counting. This is an exercise that teaches your mind to behave. It is not true meditation. That comes later down the road after you have mastered this simple counting exercise.
Meditation begins when the mind ends. Your own mind exists as long as you are thinking. When thoughts end, the result is peace of mind. Thoughts are like ripples in a pool of water. Each thought you have is like throwing a stone in a calm body of water. The more thoughts, the more stones go into the pool of water until it can create very choppy water. To return the pool of water to its original calm state, you simply stop tossing rocks into it. To return your mind to its original calm state, you simply stop tossing thoughts into it.
Your thoughts create the fake you. No thoughts (a mind free of thoughts) exposes the real you. Peace of mind is more than just a safe haven in a seemingly wild world. Peace of mind is our natural state of being that exposes the Wizard of Oz as just a regular dude standing behind a curtain of daydreams. Peace of mind removes the mask you are wearing. Peace of mind opens the gateless gate that has kept you on the hamster wheel of life, chasing a dream instead of living the dream right here, right now, in the eternal present moment.
Peace and love