Festival Theme of Summer 2022 - Practice Peace
By Hagit Ottens-Wilk (Jai Priya Kaur)
Practicing peace, like everything else in life, is about finding balance;
Balance between doing & undoing,
Between being & becoming.
This is about moving and being in flow with the energy of the universe.
When I feel inner conflict or when I am sad and upset about wars that are going on today, that are far from resolutions, it is an invitation for me to look inside and become curious about my inner state first. On the physical, mental and even emotional level.
Starting the day with this simple meditation asking myself where is it in my body that I am feeling at ease, with flow of movement, and where is there stiffness or tension.
Also where does it feel numb as if there are areas that I don’t even have access to?
Notice without judgment and move on to query about your emotions and observe what arises, allowing your heart to be the central point of where those feelings are free to move safely and be expressed.
Then, check in with your mind. Am I in a state of tightening or expanding today? Whatever the answer is have the courage to be honest and real with yourself.
This is not a test just an exploration that helps you to become aware and at ‘peace’ with the parts in you that are not yet at ease or ‘in the flow’.
and forgiveness to those parts inside is a very helpful way to learn how to have empathy for others and whatever triggers us in the world. It doesn’t mean we agree with the situation, but we look at it with more compassionate eyes, knowing that everything is changing in life and has the potential to grow and update itself. With that, we can open ourselves to possibly the hardest part that peace practice requires - forgiveness.
How past pains continue to haunt us
Repeating historical events again and again is often a hint that we are not on the path of healing the trauma but rather unconsciously fueling it. Our past can defiantly haunt us, on personal but also ancestral and even collective level; the actions our people took, the mistakes we made collectively are still affecting us as we speak.
We sometimes even unconsciously become walking reflections of the deeds of our ancestors. As sorry as we are about it we can’t change the past. We may even find ourselves trying to paint a prettier picture of it, one that may help us to possibly digest and understand some of the horrible actions in our human history. How can we even start to imagine peace between countries when the pain and sadness, for the loss on each side, is so engraved in our Transgenerational inheritance? We can start by forgiveness.
Forgiving our ancestors for not knowing any better, for making mistakes that may have even helped to shape who we are today. Forgiveness invites the space for us to try a different approach. Saying sorry is part of the healing process needed for reconciliation and we don’t have to hold this alone. We do this as a collective, as human beings, taking responsibility for our ancestors’ mistakes allows us to honor them. This requires hearing each other, all sides, the many narratives of the story. Some stories that we like to hold on to as the absolute truth may inform about where we are still absent for the possibility of transformation.
Which story are you dreaming to pass on to the next generations? By allowing the other side to be heard and validating their truth, we are not changing the past but rather including it as the nourished soil upon which we can build a new reality. Through this, we find our unique way to contribute and practice peace. This is how the universe can flow through us, step by step, allowing those numb areas to feel again.
Our ancestors may have had to block the pain and traumatic experiences for many generations in order to feel safe, but NOW we can release it! Let it breathe freely again as we welcome change.
An update that can bring peace and a more conscious balance into our lives.