Friday 4 November 2011

Dona Nobis Pacem: Peace begins with a Smile

As South Africa’s iconic leader, Nelson Mandela, points out, the quest for peace is indeed a cause for universal concern.

But how do ordinary people like you and I make a real difference in a world beset with troubles and hatred?

Peace begins with a smile, said Mother Theresa.

How right she was!

Can we have peace in a world in which so few people have peace within their own souls?

For, if we can’t even negotiate a small, personal peace — during an argument with our family members or our neighbours — how can we expect the world to live in peace?

Lasting peace begins within the parameters of our ordinary lives. Once we, as individuals, are able to live in peace and harmony with our own flaws and with an acceptance of the trivial differences that separate us from those people closest to us, then we will be able to help spread that peace to our neighbours, our communities, our nations and, ultimately, the world.

Today, along with nearly 100 other bloggers, I’m blogging for peace.

Tomorrow, and all the days that follow, I will strive for peace within myself. When I’m tired and I want to snap at my husband, I’ll try a smile of peace instead.  When my neighbour plays his loud music incessantly, I’ll aim for a peaceful solution. And when the rude driver in the shopping mall steals my parking, I’ll attempt to keep my inner self calm and peaceful.

None of these actions seem like much but, like freedom, peace can only come from within. 

No-one can disturb my peace: I can only give it away. If, no matter what the external circumstances, I can strive for peace within my soul, perhaps then I can be a flicker of hope in the midst of the chaos and confusion, the despair and sorrow that is overwhelmingly present in our world.

And, from that flicker of hope, from that simple smile, perhaps peace can spread from my heart to yours…and into the greater world beyond.

Peace be with you and yours, today and all the tomorrows that await.

Visit the founder of BlogBlast for Peace, Mimi Lennox and visit the links to other blogs to find out how peace is beginning to spread throughout the world...


Jan said...

What a great reminder thank you Judy. Striving for peace in yourself amidst all the everyday irritations and life's conflicts and concerns, is something I am constantly working on. I must return to your post later when I get home from work. For now thank you for this - a reminder to not to give away my peace and to be a flicker of hope - to take out into the world with me today.

Frances Garrood said...

A thoughtful post, Judy. I think that if eveyrone was encouraged to read I'm OK - You're OK (Thomas Harris), that would be a good start. Grown-up transactions lead to grown-up solutions. Transactional Analysis (the subject of this book) can be understood by everyone, from small children upwards, and can be a real eye-opener. I have used it again and again in counselling, and can't rate it too highly.

Ivanhoe said...

I will be smiling all day :) Peace to you today and always!

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

JAN: Hope you had a lovely day with no irritations to upset your peace!

FRANCES: I read that book years ago - you've reminded me that it's worth reading again! I love what you said here "Grown-up transactions lead to grown-up solutions." So true!

IVANHOE: May your smile spread and spread...! :)

Sarge Charlie said...

I dream of peace in my lifetime

Claudia said...

"No-one can disturb my peace: I can only give it away." I love this!!

Peace be with you today!

Linda Cassidy Lewis said...

Thank you for this, Judy. It's such a simple lesson, but one I seem destined to learn over and over. Thankfully, each day, each moment, is a new chance.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

SARGE CHARLIE: We share a dream...

CLAUDIA: And peace to you and yours!

LINDA: Sometimes it's easier than others and I often think that the times it's hardest to smile when we want to snarl are often the times we're most successful in bringing peace into our lives! But when we don't quite make you say, every moment is another chance for peace!

Anndi said...

My peace is all I've got that I can give to you... :)

Lovely post!

Travis Cody said...

Inner peace and a smile were the inspiration for my Peace Globe as well.

Best wishes to you and yours for peace today and in all the days to come.

Vinny "Bond" Marini said...

Wonderful thoughts...a simple smile!

May peace come to all today and always

Finding Pam said...

OK, I will try to be nice to that driver that steals my parking spot? Whew! Now that will be a challenge. Just kidding. You mentioned so many things that we can all do to spread peace with in our lives.

Peace to you and yours.


Beautiful peace globes

Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson



Anonymous said...

Thank you for your peace post. I could never argue with a Mandella quote! Peace to you - and a smile!

Mimi Lenox said...

Thoughtful post full of wisdom and truth! Thank you for this!
I'm so glad your internet woes are behind you. When I saw your post last night about not being able to participate I was determined to keep you front and center today somehow, even if you had to be absent.

Anyone "on the prowl" for peace is alright with me.

Thank you for blogging peace with us today and adding your strong voice to the movement.


Robin said...

Amen. I echo your sentiments, and hope that you're able to see my smile come through the ether across the miles.

I wish you peace, today and every day.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Beautiful. Reminds me of Gandhi's quote: Be the change you wish to see in the world.

Judith Mercado said...

Something I repeat to myself quite often while in distress is:

"I could see peace instead of this."

This comes from a spiritual teaching called A Course in Miracles.

Thank you for the reminder to opt for peace.

CyberCelt said...

Such a strong vision of peace. I do what I can: feed the homeless, sponsor a child in Africa, help people that need it. I wish I could do more. I wish a smile was all it took.


Bish Denham said...

Oh Judy, you speak to my heart. Peace has to start with each of us as individuals. If we each took responsibility for our own emotions well then, I do believe there would be peace in the world. As long as we lay blame on something/someone outside ourselves ("YOU make me so mad" or "the devil made me do it")then bringing peace to the world will be a challenge.

CA Heaven said...

Good quote. Nelson Mandela is an amazing person, indeed >:)

Cold As Heaven

ConnieFoggles said...

Yes! This is the perfect start. I'm joining with you right now.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

ANNDI: Your peace is the best gift possible…:)

TRAVIS: The collective dream at work - peace to you and yours as well!

VINNY: A smile is such a simple way to peace…hope you get lots of smiles today!

FINDING PAM: Ha! Ha! When that sneaky driver zips into my parking spot, Imust confess it’s a challenge to find that smile!! :) Have a peaceful week!

ABBY: Lovely peace quote from Emerson (such a wise man!) Peace Purrs to you and yours!

GOODNIGHTGRAM: Your peace globe cake looked delicious! Sending smiles your way!

MIMI: Thanks for all your efforts to bring a slice of peace to an unpeaceful world! I’m so glad I could be part of the Blog Blast 4 Peace and look forward to next year’s peace drive!

ROBIN: I see your smile – it’s shining all the way across the sea!!! :) Hope you can see mine!

SHERRY: Yes, that Ghandi quote is excellent – and much harder than trying to change the world itself!

JUDITH: I’ve often come across “A Course in Miracles” – it’s on my list of things to do one day! Visualising peace is a great way to opt out of stress and strife!

LOLA: Love having you visit! Glad you enjoyed your time here.

CYBERCELT: Step-by-step, smile-by-smile. It may not sound like much, but sometimes it’s far more difficult to find a smile when you’re angry or hurt than it is to feed a hungry child…

BISH: Absolutely! We as individuals must first take responsibility for our own inner peace and stop looking to external sources for that state of being. You said it so well! Sending a big smile and hug your way!

COLD: No one can argue that Mandela is an inspiration – so, too, was his partner in peace, FW de Klerk, who turned his back on a lifetime of conservative political thought & training to unban the ANC and release Mandela the moment he came into power. Without de Klerk’s courage to make a 180° shift in his thoughts and beliefs, and to voluntarily give away his political power, Madiba’s Magic could never have shone its light on South Africa. Along with the irrepressible Bishop Tutu and the dignified Luthuli, both de Klerk and Mandela are worthy South African winners of the Nobel Peace Prize and inspirations to all of us on how important it is to strive for peaceful change on both an individual and a universal level.

CONNIE: Glad to have you join is in smiling for peace!

Rosalind Adam said...

An excellent reminder to us all and most appropriate coming at the time of the Armistice Day memorials in the UK. If only everyone would take your idea on board there would be no need for memorials to our war dead but sadly it seems there are always people ready to fight.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

ROSALIND: Sometimes when I read about the increased outbreak of all these wars after all these millennia, I hope we're only working through "the inferno of our passions" on the way to finally overcoming humankind's need for war and replacing it with a need for a lasting peace (From Carl Jung "Memories Dreams & Reflections": A man who has not passed through the inferno of his passions has never overcome them.)

A Cuban In London said...

What a great post and what a killer opening paragraph. I love that quote by Mother Theresa. She was bang on the money. Smile, yes, smile. :-)

Greetings from London.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Judy .. I completely missed this - what a brilliant blog day .. I hope next year I can join in ..

.. but as you say each day "Dona Nobis Pacem" it's just wonderful that Nelson Mandela has given us so much .. considering all the travails - shows us what mind of matter does and can do in exceptional circumstances.

These are beautiful sentiments .. for us all to practise in our normal days ...

With many thoughts for all things down south .. and a hug or two - Hilary

Annelisa said...

Hi Judy

As I read through your post, I had an image of like a colourful peace virus spreading from a few dots to the whole's one virus I wouldn't want a cure for!! :-D

I like the idea of all of us peace bloggers scattered around the world, spreading out areas of peace around us that reach out towards each other and fill the voids...

Nice post!

[post will soon be linked in Peace Bloggers Unite]

CyberCelt said...

Peace to you and your family. May your spirit of peace spread to those you meet and may it travel worldwide.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

CUBAN: We often overlook the simple and Mother Theresa was so good at bringing high ideals down a manageable level! :)

HILARY: Hope you can join in next year as well - you'll bring a wonderfully unusual perspective and great coverage too! :)

ANNELISA: That's a virus I wouldn't mind catching! Let's hope the peace virus spreads like a smile on the face of a happy child! :)

CYBERCELT: Peace to you and yours too! :)