The Village Needs to Keep the Peace

I feel ridiculous even suggesting it, but we, The Village, *really* need to keep the peace right now, because the fighting has already begun.

But let me be specific. I’m not for one second suggesting that we don’t stand up against injustice, unfairness, prejudice, bullying or actions intended to harm others, but let’s acknowledge a few things first.

We’re scared. We’re ALL scared. For very good reason. And scared people are known for acting from that place of fear and anxiety, because that’s what our systems are designed to do – they’re designed to make snap decisions, when we’re frightened, which will aim to promote our own health and wellbeing, and hopefully to remove us from the scary situation.

Unfortunately, at the moment, the whole world is scary, and there is nowhere to run. There are so many conflicting accounts of what’s going on, and who’s to blame, and who should or should not be taken into consideration, that we’re all running in circles wondering what the hell to do. THANK GOODNESS I’m not in government because I’d probably end up hiding under a table, begging for everyone to mail each other some glitter and to please calm down and stop asking for people to be blown up.

The cynic in me wants to say that nothing can beat or change the levels of hatred the world is seeing, other than killing it with fire, and perhaps that really is something we need to acknowledge. The logical part of me suggests that people with complete confidence in their convictions are unlikely to have their opinions swayed, so there’s that. And the part of me which has complete confidence in the knowledge that Love Wins, wants to suggest that there’s still LOTS that we can do to keep the peace in the face of what seems like war.

The Village Needs to Keep the Peace #1000Speak

Other things to acknowledge include that the world is a huge mess, and there’s probably not any one simple solution; that there is a HUGE crisis with refugees needing shelter and support; there are a huge number of people EVERYWHERE who need help and support; and that there are a huge number of people who are really struggling to come to grips with all of these things (in addition to the challenges and battles of their own daily lives).

Also worth acknowledging is that only WE know our own hearts, and what is within them to compel us to action.

If there is fear or anger or prejudice in our hearts, then our actions will be skewed by those.

If there is love and compassion and empathy, then our actions will be skewed by those.

If there is a mixture of all of the above, then our actions may grind to a halt until we’ve figured out our slant.

Rather than knee-jerk into something, take time to discern your own heart on the matter. Take time to research and ask questions and develop a robust point of view. Decide where your heart lies, and how your actions will align with your innermost self. And keep peace whilst you’re still figuring it out, lest you propagate something you later regret.

Scared, angry, prejudiced people are unlikely to be able to listen to viewpoints which oppose theirs. In a way I want to suggest that there’s no point in going head-to-head with people who are calling for radical, deadly actions, and who are writing off huge swathes of society as collateral damage or worse, potential threats. I feel as though their anger, fear and commitment to the sense of their own rightness are probably uncombattable.

I sincerely hope that no-one reading this is of the opinion that they would like ANY innocent lives to be lost. If you are, then I am unlikely to have the intelligence or tenacity to dissuade you – I don’t think I would make headway, and all the while I slam my head against the brick wall of prejudice, I am losing out on opportunities to keep the peace and propagate love.

Perhaps I am naive in thinking that love can make such a difference, but I won’t be dissuaded. Perhaps I’m living with my head in the clouds. There’s definitely an element of me just NOT understanding it all, and so trying to encourage people to engage positively with one another because I don’t even close to know how to tackle the bigger issues. I don’t even know enough to really have a proper opinion about it, which might be a dereliction of some kind of human duty, but I DO know that when people are hurting and hatred seems rife, a counter-strike of LOVE needs to be made, and apathy and inaction are NOT options.

Each time we are polite in the face of rudeness, generous in the case of meanness, peace-keeping in the face of anger, truthful in the face of lies, and caring in the face of harmful behaviour, then Love Wins.

Each time we set an example which demonstrates respect and concern for people rather than engaging with sweeping overgeneralisations or behaviour which seeks to dehumanise individuals and cast them as villains, then Love Wins.

Each time we choose to involve ourselves in things which promote care for people, or support those in real need, or which seek to encourage active compassion and engagement in helping fellow humans in impossibly challenging situations, then Love Wins.

Each time Love Wins even a tiny bit of ground, we contribute to tipping the balance away from hatred and anger and harm.

Actions get lost whilst people are busy shouting and defending their viewpoints. Let’s commit to making less noise and more difference, because as long as people are at each other’s throats, nobody has each other’s backs, and we’re ALL vulnerable that way.

In the face of discussion about political and national borders being closed, we The Village need to OPEN the borders of our minds and hearts, to keep the peace, and act with love, in ANY AND ALL CAPACITIES, because whenever we do small acts of kindness, in love, then we add to the collective good, and just imagine, if we all joined in, what a DIFFERENCE we could make. So let’s try to disengage from the fights, and just quietly be forces for kindness, goodness, gentleness, compassion, empathy and love, within our own spheres.

As ever, we’re stronger TOGETHER, so don’t let’s be divided. Keep on building The Village, one peaceful, loving act at a time.

Have you got any ideas for how to keep the peace? What did you do when you were last faced with prejudice? Do you think trying to tip the balance with love is a waste of time? Tell me…

This month, 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion continues to work toward a better world with a particular focus on GRATITUDE, as well as the broader topic of compassion.

Write a post relevant to this month’s focus – GRATITUDE – and add it to the link-up right here by clicking the blue button below.

Here’s how to get involved:

Join 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion on Facebook

Visit the 1000Speak blog

Follow @1000Speak on Twitter

Use the #1000Speak hashtag across social media.

1000Speak

Advertisements

44 thoughts on “The Village Needs to Keep the Peace

  1. Pingback: REBLOGGED: The Village Needs to Keep the Peace | myzania

  2. Personally, I think you’d be a fabulous government official. Glitterbombs rather than real bombs should be the norm everywhere.
    Sorry that I’ve been gone so long. I’ll totally admit that I’ve been hiding out a bit. I don’t mean to bury my head, but I spent the week trying to mentally rest and recuperate so that I can be gracious, and generous and thankful. Thanks for keeping the village rallied, Lizzi. You rock. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are always wonderful and have nothing to apologise for, my dear ❤

      I think glitterbombs would be much better than real bombs, and people talking and connecting would be much better than the ignoring and sidelining which happens. *sigh* World's a mess, yo!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve thought, written, and meditated on this lately, with no real solution or conclusion to any of the recent situations as a result. It’s heartbreakingly overwhelming. Thanks for your post. It is nice to read another compassionate point of view.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s so overwhelming, which I think is why we all need to focus on doing the things we CAN do to be kind and proliferate Good in our portion of the world. Every time I think about the bigger situation, it feels like a mountain which keeps growing. I’m sure it must feel like that to the people in charge, too, and I’m SO grateful that *I* don’t have to make the decisions they do, even if I don’t always agree with the solutions they arrive at.

      Like

  4. I believe that, sometimes, force is the only option. But I also believe that decent human kindness and diplomacy can make the world a better place. All of this talk about closing our borders to Syrians – just because they are Syrians or Muslims is poppycock. That’s what the world did in World War II when the Jews were trying to escape Germany – and look how that turned out. In any group of people, there are going to be bad eggs – even evil eggs – but one cannot condemn an entire race or religion because of this. There will always be those who are so wounded or lost that they are easily influenced by others and will happily drink the Kool-Aid in order to belong and have a sense of purpose. Operating from a place of fear never leads to good results. A longtime member of my hiking group told me, “It’s not getting lost in the wilderness that will kill you – it’s the poor decisions you make when you panic.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah. That’s really good wisdom. Added to which, the immigration process is SERIOUSLY long and convoluted. They are checking people TO THE HILT! To the point where I’m kinda concerned that they might never let me move over 😦

      I don’t disagree that there are times when force is necessary (in the right place) but I also FAR more think that people all collectively deciding to get out there and DO GOOD, is always a good thing.

      Like

  5. Pingback: Ten Things of Thankful – Again, Still | My Virtual Vineyard

  6. I wish more people could embrace this message of love, Lizzi. The world would be better for it. Fear is a very dangerous thing and it spawns so much negativity. If the world thought like this; the things we could accomplish would be limitless.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I wish, wish, wish that enough people thought like this that collectively we could make that difference. I think as long as all of us who DO feel that way, at least TRY, then we will still set an example and make a huge difference 🙂

      Like

  7. Wonderful, Lizzi. Less noise, and more difference. As in caring for the earth, little things do have big results, so does spreading love, kindness and compassion a little at a time. Thank you for spreading love with your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, my OceanHeart 🙂 I think that if we all do a small bit, whenever we can, then we all help to chip away at something which could otherwise be completely overwhelming. We’re all in this together, so we might as well all try our best to make it a better time.

      Like

  8. The ultimate compliment, Lizzie, is that this should be bloody obvious but isn’t and that’s because it’s so difficult to put into practice when confronted with the kinds of blinkered thinking you refer to. Seeing beyond the words to the person and the situation and trying to ease some of that love into an otherwise trite and fearful debate is a real skill. I’ll keep trying.And failing. And trying

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I will stand alongside you in the trying. It’s frustrating that people are so blinkered but trying to hit them over the head with logic really doesn’t seem to be the way forward. So love it is!

      Thank you for the compliment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Sarah. I feel bad because so many people are caught up in the silly fighting which has arisen from this crisis, but honestly I feel as though the energy is wasted there…THIS – love – is where it needs to be spent.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS. What a refreshing change from the things I’ve been reading on social media this week. I’ll be sharing in the hope that this can touch even just ONE person and convince them to open their heart and let love win.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhh GOOD! Like I’ve said to others, I was really worried that I was taking a cop-out approach, but I VEHEMENTLY believe in the power of people to act lovingly and make a HUGE difference. And I just hope they do – if everyone did a little, we would all make SO MUCH DIFFERENCE. Thanks for saying you’ll share this – I hope it has the impact you want 🙂

      Like

  10. Yes. This I believe in. This I can share. I can’t bear the competitive compassion, the comments on some innocent marks made on social media, the degeneration of these comments on important issues & reactions to issues into embittered, vitriolic, smartass, even violent outbursts. So it looks for all the world like I’m ignoring it all. I am not. I am hurting like so many people are hurting. And I’m raging at injustice and the unfathomable responses some are voicing to it. So thank you for saying something I feel like I can comment honestly on & that I can share head held high, come what comments may.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Well…thank you so so much, because I worried that I was being too much of a fraidy cat to take sides in this – but when it boils down to it, I’m on the side of PEOPLE WHO HURT, and my goodness, there are so many of them, for so many reasons, and I don’t mind how or what people do to help, but my GOODNESS, can we just all do SOMETHING kind to help love win?

      There are so many ways in which this is devolving into horrible snippy little fights and I feel like it’s a nasty smokescreen because while we’re all infighting, nothing is getting done 😦

      Liked by 1 person

      • Agreed Lizzi… I know I feel helpless and like I’m not doing anything real at times… But at least I can refrain from adding to the frankly unfathomable disputes I see going on. There’s a bigger picture. But in places I see even this argument – to look at the bigger picture, being used as a pawn to one-up on someone or downgrade another – and what on earth use is that? People are trying to express themselves, as you say, in a time of great fear and anxiety, and other people are shooting them down out of their own fear and anxiety, and perpetuating uselessness. I recognise the places where people want to say *something* and that something is a positive thing – putting our thoughts and feelings into words matter. It’s a matter of record and a matter of encouraging others to think before they speak – that’s what really spoke to me from this post.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I like your thoughts on this. I fall somewhere between ‘if you haven’t anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all’ and the idea that actually, if people don’t TALK, then there’s never going to be a way forward with any of it.

          I think in the end, though, there are those who have decided to push an agenda, whether intentionally or just through being side-tracked into it, and those who genuinely want to connect and link up and HELP.

          Overridingly the feeling I’ve gotten from the posts I’ve read about helping and supporting is that it doesn’t/shouldn’t matter WHERE or HOW or WHO you help, as long as you DO something…just something…to make someone’s life easier in their hardship.

          Liked by 1 person

  11. All. The loves and the giving of the fucks. I think I may link up. Thank you. Thank you for giving the loves and for giving a fuck. It matters. YOU matter.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I hope you link up. I sometimes wonder if I give too many fucks, but then I think I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t. I know I’m a bit of a bleeding heart at times. But I’m glad it matters. And I’m always glad when I matter 🙂 Thank you ❤

      Like

  12. Oh Lizzi!!! This post expresses exactly what has been on my heart all week. I have stopped going on Facebook (something I spend a lot of time doing & enjoying) this week because of the hate & vitriol being spouted. The thing that bothers me the most is re: the refugee situation. Those poor people are fleeing from a hell that most of us cannot even imagine. I know some bad people have gotten through that way, but there has to be a solution that does not preclude people from escaping. Have we lost our humanity? I could go on & on. This all has weighed very heavy on me this week. I believe the good far outweighs the bad in this world. That’s about the only thing I know for sure. Thanks for this great post. I think it’s the best you’ve ever written.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhh thank you so much, Diana. I’ve been really fortunate, because whilst many of my friends have been lamenting the awful attitudes out there, none of them have actually been proponents of them, which I LOVE, and which emphasises to me how GREAT the FB friends I have, are.

      I’m so sad that you’ve felt the need to escape from FB because of all the hate and vitriol, and some of it truly is APPALLING!

      We have, I think, forgotten our humanity, and compassion and reaching out in kindness, even within our own spheres, will all help to reconnect those very caring, human aspects, and demonstrate the POWER of them, to those who wish to proliferate darkness and uncare.

      Like

  13. Pingback: Is Your Love Big Enough? The Syrian Refugee Crisis | The SisterWives

  14. Lizzi, I do agree with you that when our hearts are filled with fear or with love makes such a difference to how we respond. And I agree that trying to argue people out of their fear-filled and fear-fuelled prejudices isn’t going to work. This is when I think the NVC approach is quite effective – empathise first, and then, when the person is calmer, because they feel understood, they might be able to consider other perspectives.
    We can also look inside and learn to love our own flaws – love ourselves in our prejudices, fear etc. That makes us more able to be love so that as you say, we go on being to love we would like to see.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I suppose a large part of it is that it’s important to understand that people’s prejudices don’t just arrive out of nowhere – they’re often explainable through culture or based in past experiences or…whatever, really, but that until those explanations are acknowledged and *those* situations gently challenged (which won’t happen until the person feels understood enough to reveal how they ended up with the prejudice in the first place) then nothing will move forwards.

      I think that’s what I’m learning to do with myself. Kind of. Or what I *should* be learning to do with myself – finding the explanations for the ways I think.

      Like

  15. Damnit. Second.

    And what Michelle said. This is amazing Lizzi. I don’t think you’re naive at all. Of all the people I can see – you are the one person I can actually see making a difference. Your words mean everything.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awwwwh *blushes* well THANK YOU! I feel very much out of my depth with the way things are at the moment, and my lack of understanding, but at the same time, on an individual level, I feel like I know what will help EVERYONE…

      I truly hope I can make a difference, somehow. ❤

      Like

Comments are where the magic happens...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s