Peace One Day

Today is Peace One Day. It’s an international project and you can find out more about it at http://www.peaceoneday.org

Peace is not merely an absence of war. Many of us do not live in peace even though we’re not implicated in any kind of armed conflict. I know so many people who are caught up in fighting right now – fighting their governments and corrupt systems, fighting to save badgers, landscapes, homes, to protect rights. There are too many people whose work life is a constant battle, or whose home life is fraught with danger. We kill each other on the domestic front all the time. We die on the roads. We end our own lives in pain and despair.

Peace is about all of these things. It’s an issue of not being at war with the planet, and not practicing genocide on other species. We don’t even have a word for that, so far as I know, but we should.

We don’t get real peace by ignoring the problems, or by ceasing to fight over matters of life and death. The only kind of peace of any value, is a peace that works for everyone. While we buy into the idea of competition being preferable to co-operation, while we put the gain of the few ahead of the needs of the many and refuse to even think about the long term survival of our species, we can’t have peace.

I’m very tired today. These last ten days or so have left me bruised of heart and mind, and ill of body. I am painfully aware of a need for some personal peace right now. I’m going to take some time out today and sit in a hill with friends, and think about what we could be doing to make things better. Where to stand and fight and where to let go. When to step forward, and when to walk away. Small and finite resource that I am, how can I deploy myself to best effect? Where will my voice make most difference? I don’t know.

The last few days have brought me face to face, repeatedly, with everything I like least about myself, everything I fear may be true of me in terms of my insufficiencies. It’s funny that I get people, both online and offline, who see me as someone who needs taking down a peg or two. I’ve never figured out what it is that I do to come across as arrogant and self- important, aside from simply having this willingness to speak. I only keep doing it because there’s an ongoing stream of feedback from people who find me useful. I figure, if one person finds my words helpful, it was worth sharing them. And yes, there are indeed plenty of days when I share my latest critic’s concern that this makes me some kind of audience-hungry imposter, somehow lacking in some needful inner quality. There is no peace at all in that kind of despair and self-hatred. The only door it opens for me is the one that leads to death. There are days when that seems like the most productive contribution I could make. There are days when I write about peace because I need to believe there is some point, some reason for hope.

For those of you who find me acceptable and useful as I am, thank you. What you give, in doing that, is beyond measure for me. Peace in your hearts, peace in your homes, and may Peace One Day as an idea bring you something good.

About Nimue Brown

Druid, author, dreamer, folk enthusiast, parent, polyamourous animist, ant-fash, anti-capitalist, bisexual steampunk. Drinker of coffee, maker of puddings. Exploring life as a Pagan, seeking good and meaningful ways to be, struggling with mental health issues and worried about many things. View all posts by Nimue Brown

12 responses to “Peace One Day

  • ecopsyche

    Beautifully and profoundly put, as always. You always make me think, feel, and wonder. Sometimes I agree with what’s said (especially today! ), sometimes I don’t, but I always find value in your writing. May peace (and harmony) find you 🙂

    • Nimue Brown

      Hello and thanks for that. If you have different perspectives or experience that cast a topic in a different light – do consider posting those, there is always more to a subject than I can know or hope to cover, and I really appreciate the story sharing.

  • Matilda

    I like reading your words, & I especially enjoyed today’s. Druidry is one spirituality I’m exploring right now.

  • Rober Leland Hall

    Many years ago I learned a small leason—-One does not need to love what you say to love you and the bravery you share in saying it——Criticism can seem unkind and uncomfortable but it can also give us thoughtful pause——- For that is how we grow——-I for one love your work—-It’s why I take the time to comment from time to time ( maybe to often ) but that is the role I choose in your audience—- Your Ardent Admirer.

  • asuburbandruid

    I like your take on Peace Day. Peace operates on so many different levels. I hope you find the internal peace you seek today on your hill among friends.

    SD

  • Alien

    Hi Cat. I would like to share something I read recently from a blog that was a link from Philip Carr Gomm’s blogpost. This author wrote that nowadays he doesn’t write unless there is something contained in it that may be controversial to somebody (please excuse the paraphrasing). I thought about that for a little while and realised that if we were only to write about things that everyone agreed upon then we wouldn’t be in rhe business of promoting awareness, grow and change. People will always find something to to get under the collar about if that is their way. Others will enjoy the opportunity to think in ways they may not have considered before. You are a messenger with a fabulous message but your readers can only hear what they are prepared or willing to. Dialogue is always good and so my question to you would be “how much change towards Peace One Day could you make if you only ever wrote about topics that were safe and easy?” Peace

  • Kathleen Gstalter

    Arrogant? I have yet to sense this in your writings. They have always seemed honest and thought provoking to me. I’m not an expert in human behavior, but if have learned that for me, when my reaction to something Is to lash out and discredit the source I am usually feeling uncomfortable with something that has been laid bare within myself. If I can make the source wrong then my discomfort with myself becomes null. Could it be that this is at play with those who wish to “take you down a peg or two”? Whatever “peg” you are on, it seems you had a difficult climb to get there… And I am grateful for the view you are sharing. Thank you…

    • Nimue Brown

      Thank you, much appreciated. There are days when I have a sense of dizying heights, when things I had never though to achieve are realised, and there are days that are more akin to lying in the gutter, hoping there will be stars to look at… so yes, it confuses me a fair bit when people view me as something to knock down.

      • Rober Leland Hall

        It never usually helps to assume that we are OK and they are NOT OK—-(Old American Phsycology Treatise(1960’s))—-Even if it is true!!!! that they are NOT OK—Take pause I am not critisizing you—— But to rationilize that I am right is to avoid a variety of introspections that I or any critical thinker (such as yourself)wants to embrase—-Your Ardent Admirer( Often Misunderstood)—–

        If it is about Fame–Ignore the critics! (as is suggested)—If it is about soul embrace the experience . The beauty of your soul is clear to me and your many admirers !!!!!!

      • Nimue Brown

        I tend to assume that I am wrong, that the responsibility is mine, the mistake is mine, and I’ve spent a lot of time around people who were very happy to agree and reinforce that. I’ve been places where I’ve been both weeping with pain, and apologising to the person who just hurt me for inconveniencing them with my tears. The one thing I most need is to be able to protect myself by allowing myself to be right, good enough, justified now and then. Not in the sense of having to blame someone else, but in the sense of being able to hold some feeling of self worth. I appreciate that coming into this now… here I am with a well established blog and a couple of books to my name… I look perhaps like someone in a whole other place. So I can see where you’re coming from, but it’s a long way from where I’m coming from.

  • Nimue Brown

    It’s always a bit of a dance between trying to learn from feedback and working out what I do not need to take onboard. The reminder to compassion is good though, because I have to include me in that one. Thanks for the thoughts, Jo.

  • Terra Maple Forester

    “I’ve never figured out what it is that I do to come across as arrogant and self- important”

    I think you need not dwell on trying to figure it it. Perhaps it is not a trait of yours to come across that way, but rather a trait of others to accuse people of being arrogant. I find that trying to give the benefit of the doubt to comments from others diverts me from the path of seeking my own truth. I’ve read enough of your blog and your books to see your wisdom, a wisdom that has grown out of depths of pain and anxiety. You don’t need to second-guess yourself. Your ideas, insights, feelings, and attitudes are solid.

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