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Peace within leads to peace everywhere

By: Dr. Jawahar Surisetti

This International Day Of Peace, I wanted to write a piece on the nations and religions and their agenda of peace. But before I could do that, I looked back at my routine and when I could write some lines about peace. To my dismay, I was at a loss of time, caught up in some issues that disturbed me and it was at this point that I thought that if there is no peace within how can there be peace outside. We have all become like this – restless, edgy, impatient, intolerant to small issues and there is a lack of stability in the mind. I was trying to figure out the reasons which might not be very philosophical but closer to life that has made us lose a lot of our inner peace. Social media and mobile phones have made us more restless seeing other people posting things that show them as leading a better life than us. Day in and day out we are exposed to such pictures which makes us feel that we are inferior to others. These so-called friends and ourselves to portray a life that is different than what we leave. We miss this point and start comparing ourselves and sometimes end up blaming our near and dear ones. This pressure to do better than the other has led to extensive consumerism without a thought to our finances.

Competitive consumerism fuelled by social media and our overexposure to them has taken away a part of our inner peace. The second instance is the extent to which we live life is not in proportion to the time that we have. The pace of life we live in is spattered with work and other activities so much so that we have robbed our children out of their childhood. We expect our children to go to school, come back home and complete the homework, go to tuitions, prepare for competitive exams, do some activities like swimming, art or dance. This leaves little time for the child to breathe and enjoy his childhood. We have not only robbed ourselves of our peace but have rubbed it off on our children due to our pseudo aspirations. Thirdly, we have become overly selfish. In a world of nuclear families, we restrict our thoughts to the four or five people and ignore the society at large.

Too much individualism has led to our thinking which is evident at schools that for the adults to work, children should be occupied at school. So we outsource our children to schools and coax them not to have a five day week and have something on Saturday too so that we may find time for us without our children maybe for work or parties. What we have missed is that the school or crèche is not in a position to serve the emotions of a parent that the child needs and expects but does not get. How do we in pursuit of external pleasure put our children into environments that are devoid of emotions and expect them to be at peace? So we have created a world where we are not at peace and we have made sure that our children are not at peace. Money and amenities cannot buy inner peace and happiness for our children not for us. Spend quality time with the family, give back to society and live life at a pace that is comfortable for inner peace. Then we can look for peace in the world.