How do we find peace?

 

There are many ways to find peace. Here are some approaches I have found helpful.

We can create a certain life. A life that feels right, nurturing, and meaningful. A life where we have nurturing relationships. Meaningful work and activities. A life aligned with our values and what’s important to us. A part of this is to heal and mend – as far as possible – any challenging relationships.

We can invite in healing. We can invite in healing for parts of us not in peace. We can invite in healing for trauma and emotional issues.

We can reorient. We can learn to befriend our experience as it is, including the experience of lack of peace (!). In this process, we also learn to befriend (more of) the world as it is.

We can find ourselves (more) as our human wholeness. As we find ourselves as the wholeness of who we are as a human being, there is a sense of groundedness and peace even as life and thoughts and emotions goes on. This is an ongoing process, perhaps including body-centered mindfulness and projection work, and the peace is of a different kind.

We can explore our need for peace. If we feel a neediness around peace, what’s going on? Do we have stressful beliefs about living without peace? Do we have identities rubbing up against the reality of sometimes lack of peace? Is there a trauma or emotional issue telling us we need peace? Examining this and find some resolution for whatever may be behind a need for peace can, in itself, help us find more peace.

It’s stressful to feel we need peace and fight with a world that doesn’t always give us the conditions we may think we need for peace. And it is, perhaps ironically, more peaceful to find peace with life as it is.

We can live with (more) integrity. Living with integrity gives us a sense of peace, even when life is challenging. Living with integrity means to clarify and follow what’s important to us, and to live with some sincerity and honesty – especially towards ourselves.

We can follow our own inner guidance. Following our inner guidance – in smaller and bigger things – connects us with an inner quiet and peace, even when life is stormy. We can learn to follow our inner guidance through experience. And it’s also helpful to notice when we connect with our inner guidance and don’t follow it, and examine what fears and stressful beliefs in us made it difficult for us to follow it.

We can connect with the larger whole. This larger whole comes in three related forms. One is the larger whole of who we are as a human being (mentioned above). Another is the larger whole of the Earth and the universe. We can connect with this through Earth-centered practices, the Universe Story, and more. The third is what we are.

We can explore and get to know what we are. What we are is what our experience happens within and as. As we learn to find ourselves as that, there is a different kind of peace. The peace of being like the sky that clouds, storms, clear weather and anything else passes through.

Each of these is an ongoing process and exploration. It’s not a place we arrive at for good and don’t have to pay attention to again.

The kind of peace we find in each of these ways is somewhat different. In a sense, they complement each other.

As for how to find these types of peace, there are many approaches and I’ll mention a few here.

To heal, I have found parts (subpersonality) work, inquiry, heart-centered practices, TRE, Vortex Healing and more to be helpful. To reorient, I have found ho’oponopno, tonglen, and all-inclusive gratitude practice to be helpful. To find myself as my human wholeness, I have found body-centered mindfulness (yoga, tai chi, chigong, Breema) and projection work (inquiry, shadow work) helpful. To explore any neediness around peace, I have found inquiry to be helpful. To live more with integrity, it’s helpful to explore what in me (usually a fear, stressful belief, trauma) takes me away from living with integrity in any specific situation. To follow my inner guidance, it’s helpful to practice in smaller situations and likewise explore what in me (fears etc.) takes me away from it. To connect with the larger whole of the Earth and Universe, it’s helpful to use the Practices to Reconnect (Joanna Macy), Universe Story, and similar approaches. To explore what we are, I have found Headless experiments, Living Inquiries, and the Big Mind process to be helpful.

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Highs, happiness, and contentment

 
There is a distinct difference between highs, happiness, and contentment. A high is euphoria triggered by a number of things including entertainment, good news, sex, an opening or awakening, caffeine, or a variety of drugs. It makes us temporarily feel good, partly because it distracts us from uncomfortable feelings, painful thoughts, and in general anything unresolved in us. There is nothing wrong with feeling good but it’s helpful to see if we seek it or latch onto it in order to avoid something uncomfortable. If we do, it’s something we can look at so we can find more freedom and fluidity around how we feel, and welcome more wholeheartedly and be more OK with a wider range of feelings and states. Happiness is similar, and it can perhaps be seen as a mild high. Again, it’s a perfectly natural state. And occasionally, it may be good to check in to see if we seek or try to hold onto happiness in order to avoid something. Contentment is different. It’s a fundamental OKness with what’s here, with our experience as it is right now. That may seem a tall order, although it’s very much possible to taste that fundamental OKness in more and more situations. How do we find this OKness with our current experience? Through shifting into noticing and allowing. Through noticing that this experience is already allowed as it is (by awareness, space, mind, life). Through allowing and resting with our resistance (fear) to it. Through inquiring into our fear about it, and how our mind creates its experience of it. Through cultivating kindness towards it – for instance by using ho’oponopono, tonglen, or another kindness practice. I personally prefer contentment since it allows me to find peace with whatever experience is here. If there is one thing we know from experience, it’s that our experience changes. States, emotions, thoughts and any other flavor of experience changes. It comes to pass, not to stay, as Byron Katie says. And that means I welcome and enjoy happiness and natural highs. I can even enjoy them more because they are less marred by a wish to make them stay or to seek the next high or a more permanent happiness (which may never happen). Read More

Finding peace with my images

 

I keep seeing this too:

My world is my world of images. And I can struggle with these images – scare myself with them, or I can find understanding and love for them.

How do I find understanding and love for these images? For me, it’s through support from ho’oponopono, The Work, TRE, bringing them into the heart flame – allowing it to burn away anything not like itself, and holding satsang with them, along with whatever else comes to me.

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Two forms of peace

 

I have received a few biodynamic craniosacral sessions lately, and notice that they seem to put me in some form of trance for about three days. It’s peaceful, and yet something feels a little strange about it. I realize it’s because it’s a peaceful state, one that keeps me from going “down” into shadow material and personal material, and also from going “up”. It feels a bit artificial, almost like, from what I hear, a tranquilizer or drug aimed at stabilizing the emotions. I am not sure if this is typical for bcs or is more from the therapist. (Whom I like and respect very much.)

It’s also a reminder that one form of peace is a state, which I appreciate when it’s here. And another is the peace of finding that which already allows what’s here, that which allows any and all states. Finding it, noticing it, and perhaps finding myself as that – and the deep rest that comes with it.

As I have noticed after these sessions, the first form of peace allows less activity. And the second allows any and all activities.

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Jeff Foster: Rest in peace

 

If your peace can be disturbed, it is not the kind of peace you truly long for. If it can be disturbed, it is just a second-hand image of peace, and not the real thing.

We say, “I was so peaceful, and then a wave of fear (or anger, or pain, or sadness…) came along and destroyed my peace!”

But is that really true? Can you ‘have’ peace and then ‘lose’ it? Can peace really be destroyed?

Really it’s the other way round, isn’t it? Fear didn’t destroy your peace, you destroyed fear’s peace. You denied fear’s right to peace by not allowing that energy to move freely in you.

Even fear just wants to come to rest, to express itself fully and come to rest, but we’re so busy trying to get rid of it, escape it, or numb ourselves to it – basically we’re trying to ‘do’ something with it, and this ‘doing’ is actually the end of our peace, not a path towards it.

Stop destroying fear’s peace and let it rest, poor thing – it is suffering from an ancient tiredness, having been wandering in the wilderness for billions of years. It just wants somewhere to lay its head.

Will you give fear the rest it longs for? Will you give fear a home? Will you let all of these poor orphan waves in life’s vast ocean – fear, sadness, anger, doubt, confusion – rest in peace, the peace that you are?

Being what you are – that’s a peace that cannot be destroyed.

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Peace and noise

 

This is again something very simple I keep noticing.

When I experience peace, I am perfectly happy with silence around me – just enjoying the sounds of the wind or rain, or people in the distance.

And when there is more inner turmoil, it’s easy to be drawn to creating “noise” around me as a distraction – often music.

So inner peace is often reflected in silence. And inner turmoil in sound.

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