The Elders of many nations have spoken about the times we are living in. They have prophesied much that has happened thus far, and speak of a life out of balance, out of control. They highlight aspects of the patriarchal domination system – greed, separation, and violence – that keep us isolated from one another, and fearful.
They also continue to whisper a reminder of another way of living, another choice, another way of being in right relations with all members of Mother Earth’s family. These old ways offer a tried and true way of living with honor and respect for all living beings. It is a circular path, with a circular perspective of time and life through seasons and cycles. They offer reverence for our inter-connectedness with all of Creation, and the harmony that springs from that understanding. It is a way to listen and hear that opens the heart to a universal language of love.
This physical existence has spun its web intertwining life forms and providing an opportunity to grow and ripen to our highest and fullest capabilities. We have everything we need to transform violence, injustice, devastation and ruin. We have everything we need to heal ourselves and our communities. We have everything we need to create a path of peace and live it.
We walk our spiritual path alone, so it is ours to identify. We must walk the path that speaks the language of our heart. Each path that is based in love provides a way of walking that honors the most basic and universal Teachings of peace. When each of us discards our own contribution to violence, we are able to listen and hear that innate wisdom that surfaces from within. Once we access that wisdom, we are able to embrace a deeper love of self, and a deeper understanding and compassion for ‘the other’.
We all have a role to play in this unfolding event we call life. Each individual holds an interlocking piece of this grand, global puzzle. We see the crossroads ahead and remember, that by choosing love over fear this can be a new beginning on our collective journey of being peace.
Will you use this day to begin facing your own fears? Will you forgive yourself for the violence that continues to dwell within you? Will you make a new choice and truly hear the pain and suffering coming from those you consider ‘the enemy’? Will you greet the new day with love in your heart and say no to judgment?
Together, we can heal the wounds. Together, we can rebuild our broken system. Together, we can plant new gardens of hope and prosperity. Together, we can create a culture of peace.
Ymani Simmons is a peacemaker, writer, mentor, community elder, advocate for Mother Earth, indigenous rights and a supporter of women through a voice of awareness, spiritual circles, retreats, ritual, and counsel.
She is a Delegate with a Fellowship of Reconciliation 2007 people-to-people peace delegation to Iran; International Consultant for the Kashmir Center for Peace and Reconciliation (Srinagar, Kashmir), a non-political organization focused on building the skills of leadership through nonviolence.
She lives in Asheville, North Carolina, USA.