Peace: World War Ii and Perennial Philosophy

Topics: United States, World War II, United States Declaration of Independence Pages: 42 (15410 words) Published: September 24, 2012
      What peace means to me…
In a country, Peace is a term that most commonly refers to an absence of aggression, violence or hostility. Peace isn’t the absence of violence but rather the presence of justice. In a society, peace happens when different desires are in one agreement. Peace is based on many things, culture, education, family values, experience, & history (to name a few) but the basis is the same----to co-exist without war, killing, & overpowering a fellow being. According to me, Peace is the feeling that all's right with the world. When everyone around me in my family, my friend circle and my neighbourhood is happy, eager to love, accept and relate… I feel at peace. Also, to me it means following what my heart says and sharing mutual trust and respect for people around me. However, in today’s world, peace and harmony face various threats. Terrorism, regional imbalance, economic disparity, and social inequality are some of the factors which threaten peace today. We all are so engrossed in our busy lifestyles and yet want our lives to be peaceful. We expect that peace to be omnipresent but what we need to realize is the fact that if we want peace- we have to live peacefully, love everyone, forgive, forget, etc. .

It’s not enough to stand around asking if world peace will ever happen because that won’t do anything. Actions speak louder than any words. If everyone starts living the peaceful, loving way, things will change. But someone has to start and lead by example. Mahatma Gandhi once said "You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” We can’t rely on anyone else to do this. We have to do these ourselves. Acceptance, compassion, and tolerance are the foundation of peace. Mahatma Gandhi showed that peace ends suffering and oppression, not by warring against an enemy but by bearing witness to wrongs and allowing sympathy and common humanity to do their patient work. Nelson Mandela and Mother Teresa lived different aspects of peace, which was proven to be a viable way to achieve great things.

Perennial means always reappearing, like flowers which you plant once and then come up every Spring. Philosophy, of course, means love of wisdom or, more generally, it means wisdom itself. So "the perennial philosophy" means the wisdom which shows up again and again. It shows up throughout history in all cultures and all parts of the globe. It is timeless and universal. It answers the most fundamental questions people have asked about existence. It speaks to their highest concerns, and has done so since humanity first developed a hunger for spiritual understanding of the human condition. The Perennial Philosophy is also the title of a book by Aldous Huxley published in 1944 about this global wisdom-tradition. Think back to 1944. The entire world was at war. All civilization was threatened by the butchery and depravity of the Axis powers. As the destruction and death toll increased, humanity's hopes and dreams for a peaceful, united world seemed to be mere fantasies. In the midst of that nightmare, Huxley wrote a book to offer a solution to the problem of Man's inhumanity to man. To put it simply, he said there will never be a better world until there are better people in it, and the place to begin building better people is with ourselves, through spiritual practices which bring our lives more and more into awareness of the unity of the human family under the fatherhood of God. Yet the world's religions, from which spiritual practices are derived, seemed as divided from one another as the world's nations. Their potential as a force for universal good will and spiritual brotherhood was unrealized. Earth's political bodies and religious bodies alike were in deep division and struggle. What might end the warfare and unite the human race, Huxley wondered. The only solution, he said, lay in seeing the essential unity of the world's major religions and sacred traditions. What was that unseen unity? In a single...
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