Did you know that the United Nations has a new Secretary General? Most Americans don’t pay attention to this stuff, but on January 1 António Guterres of Portugal began his tenure in that lead position replacing Ban Ki-moon who had served in the role since January 2007.

And what did Guterres do on his first day?  He proclaimed 2017 as a “year of peace”.  The short video above is his proclamation and reasoning.  Here is a link to an article with text on the topic.  I think it is quite telling that this was one of his first acts in his new role.  Peace is that important.  Would you agree?

Given the state of the world, this is a noble call, but one that many of us would look upon with a degree of cynicism.  Many say that it is within human nature to give in to greed and desire for money and power….and that all of this sense of competition leads naturally to violence and war.  Such a viewpoint gives in to accepting that we can never really have peace on Earth.

But is war and violence our natural state as human beings?  I don’t believe that.

I believe that we have bought into a false sense of separation…an illusion that we are in some fight for survival of the fittest with other humans…our false belief in this illusion keeps us at war with each other and ultimately at war with ourselves.  The only way out is to heal the false belief and move to a place of love.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

“When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace.” ~ Jimi Hendrix

The truth is that our sense of separation is an illusion based on our evolution through the physical third dimension.  Yes, this world is quite compelling and convinces us that we are separate from others…but the reality is that we are more than our physical bodies and that our spiritual essence transcends this material world. Our spiritual ground of all being moves in and through all of us, gives us our being and connects us as One.  When we get that spiritual truth anchored into our awareness, we cannot help but “be love” to all, knowing all as connected to us.  How do we get this sense of oneness?  We look within to the power and presence that animates our physical being.

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” ~ Buddha

“We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.” ~ Dalai Lama

When we shift our story from one that sees us as separate beings to being connected as part of a greater whole….we will then act with a sense of greater concern for each other….we will want the world to be a fair place that works for everyone….we will seek “win-win” solutions to conflict…..we will expand our sense of care and concern to our fellow humans regardless of their race, religion, nationality or any other human way of categorizing ourselves…..we will see that such ways of parsing us up into different groupings only serves to build walls between us when what we really need is to build bridges.

“Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace.” ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

Is this way of seeing and being in the world easy? No. I try to stay in this sense of peace and love and oneness…but it’s hard. I mess up all the time….but I also know that the goal is so noble and good and true that it is worth the effort. I know that everytime I buy into fear and separation and acting without love in my heart that there is a lesson in the moment…a lesson that calls me to pick myself up, dust off the residue of the false action and set a new intention to do better….to be love in all my actions from that moment forward….and the more I do this, the more consistent I get in acting from love and manifesting peace.

So, yes, Mr. Gutteres, I join you in your endeavor…..I, too, see 2017 as a year of peace…..

And, I know that the peace I see begins with me….in my own thoughts, my own words, my own interactions with my fellow spiritual travelers. I can and will be peace. Won’t you be peace with me?

Let there be peace on Earth and let it begin with me.

Mark Gilbert


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