Hello! Welcome back to my new workshop on Finding Your Inner Peace Sanctuary. I have just had the privilege of a grace-filled retreat with a realized master, one of the great beings on the planet today. Sri Mata Amritanandamayi, affectionately known as Amma (Mother) and the “Hugging Saint”, came from humble beginnings in a south Indian fishing village. Though she only has a fourth-grade formal education, she has become the inspiring leader of a vast network of global charities, providing food, shelter, education and medical care to countless people around the world. She tours North America every year, sharing insights on a life of compassion and selfless service, and embracing everyone who comes her way with indescribable unconditional love. She is able to do all this because she lives in a state of unshakable inner peace.
Under Amma’s guidance, I have the opportunity to deepen my meditation and practice selfless service, which are the foundation of my life, every day. I cultivate peace of mind and peaceful living by learning from spiritual leaders who set beautiful examples of compassion to inspire global change, through internal awareness and personal responsibility.
We are moving through a challenging time in the world today. The need for peace has never been so apparent. At the same time, we are blessed to have access to shining inspirational lights such as Amma; Eckhart Tolle, the German-Canadian spiritual teacher and author of transformative books The Power of Now and A New Earth; Jane Goodall, the primatologist who became the UN Messenger of Peace; and Desmond Tutu, the South African theologian and human rights activist who co-authored The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World. They, among others, show how peace in the world begins within. They embody the wisdom-compassion that can bring lasting peace to the planet – if we find the humility to truly listen, learn and live from such precious, timeless teachings.
So this week, I would like to simply share some of their words to inspire you.
Quotes on Peace
“Compassion does not see the faults of others. It does not see the weaknesses of people. It makes no distinction between good and bad people. Compassion cannot draw a line between two countries, two faiths or two religions. Compassion has no ego; thus there is no fear, lust or passion. Compassion simply forgives and forgets. Compassion is like a passage. Everything passes through it. Nothing can stay there. Compassion is love expressed in all its fullness.”
“The more space we create for others within our heart, the more happiness we experience.”
“A good question to ask is: what kinds of thoughts go through your mind all day long? If a large percentage of those thoughts are negative you will manifest negative situations. You will react to people and things in a negative way and make situations worse. Once you become aware that you have certain thoughts in your head, you can observe these thoughts. Now there are two dimensions: you have the thoughts and you have the awareness. The person who is totally in the grip of ego is so identified with the thoughts that there is no awareness whatsoever. That is the state that generates conflict, violence and all the enormous amounts of suffering human beings inflict on themselves and others. The key is the growth of awareness in you; the realization that there is a dimension in you that is deeper, or higher, than thinking.”
“It is inner stillness that will save and transform the world.”
– Eckhart Tolle
“Let us move forward with faith in ourselves, in our intelligence, in our indomitable spirit. Let us develop respect for all living things. Let us try to replace violence and intolerance with understanding and compassion and love.”
– Dr. Jane Goodall
“God’s dream is that you and I and all of us will realize that we are family, that we are made for togetherness, for goodness, and for compassion. […] Our lives are transformed as much as the world is when we live with these truths.”
– Desmond Tutu
I invite you now to take a moment with these quotes, then consider the following questions:
- How can these great beings inspire my week ahead?
- Am I willing to take steps each day, however small, to live more peacefully with my neighbours, co-workers, family and friends?
- Am I willing to take steps each day to live more peacefully with myself?
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From my heart to yours,