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Lions Roar : March 2010
SHAMBHALA SUN MArcH 2010 17 IT IS ABSOLUTELy POSSIBLE to create a good human society here on Earth. To do so, we need mindfulness and intention. As human beings, we are influenced by our environment. If we create an environment of aggression and disharmony, stress will become the norm. Conversely, if we create an environment of kindness, love, discipline, and generosity, we will all begin to feel a sense of peace. One characteristic of this dark age is that we doubt our innate goodness. We look outside ourselves for fulfillment, and this creates individualism, in which we believe only in our own interests. We solidify our mind and consciousness—which are naturally fluid and harmonious—into material entities. We become hard individ- uals who communicate through anger and arrogance. We believe that what will satisfy us is material, and with this view we create a hard, angry, and materialistic world. At present, the world seems to be running on self-centeredness, speed, and aggression. As this pattern exacerbates, the possibility of peace, both personally and socially, will diminish. Materialism will never make us happy because it is of a different nature than consciousness. Even though material things are important, they are not fundamentally at the core of human beings. The antidote for this materialistic outlook is peace, the opposite of stress. In creating peace, our relationship with the environment is critical, particularly our relationship with the inner environ- ment—our consciousness. If we don’t have a peaceful and har- monious relationship with our own being, it will be impossible for us to create peace anywhere else. Without a personal experi- ence of peace, we won’t even believe in the possibility. Therefore, we must become mindful of peace. Looking at modern champions of peace such as Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, and the Dalai Lama, we see that as life put them to the test, they all came to the conclusion that peace is the way. How did they do it? As they developed mindfulness of peace, they identified it as their true state of being. Their example demonstrates that the discovery of inner peace does not belong to any one religion or belief system; it is a universal human potential. To bring peace to the world, each of us must take on the responsibility of discovering inner peace. The first step in the process is to develop a meditative discipline. There is little pos- sibility of discovering peace when we are caught up in the speed and stress of daily life. We all need to cultivate contemplative self-awareness in a period of daily introspection. The benefit of such a discipline is that we become mindful. What is mindfulness? It is the ability to appreciate our own life, moment to moment, because we are able to access our own consciousness. PHOTOByZSOLTSUTO,WWW.WEBZEN.RO saKyong MiPhaM rinPoChE is the spiritual leader of shambhala, an international network of Buddhist meditation and retreat centers. he is the author of Turning the Mind Into an Ally and Ruling your World. How to Be a Peacemaker To bring peace to the world, each of us must take on the responsibility of discovering inner peace, says saKyong MiPhaM rinPoChE, and the first step is to develop a meditative discipline.