Pray for Peace
Many years ago when I was just a young mother, I wrote my first "professional" article, which was published in the Boston Globe. In the article, I related how the words of the Prayer of St. Francis had touched my heart and inspired me to look at how I could help bring peace to this tired, war-torn world.
As the years passed, I have written and spoken of peace many times. I have shared the etymology of the word peace as well as looked for inspiration in the holy texts from around the world. I have even collected quotes about peace that inspired, enlightened and encouraged me.
In light of the news this past week, I thought I would share some of the quotes I have collected. They come from around the world, from various times and by various people. I pray that they will help you, as you pray for peace, so that the individual prayers we say will gather together spreading out into the Universe, like ripples on a pond, until all that is fills with Peace.
“Keep your hands to yourself; if you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all; and treat everyone the way you would want to be treated.” My mother (Said to me on the first day of kindergarten 1958)
“Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.” Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” Buddha (563-438 BCE)
"Shall I inform you of a better act than fasting, alms and prayers? Making peace between one another, enmity and malice tear up heavenly rewards by the roots." Sayings of Muhammad (circa 600 CE)
“Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (From a speech give in 1967)
"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other." Mother Theresa (1910-1997)
“No matter how big a nation is, it is no stronger that its weakest people, and as long as you keep a person down, some part of you has to be down there to hold him down, so it means you cannot soar as you might otherwise.” Marian Anderson (1897-1993)
"Supreme Lord, let there be peace in the sky and in the atmosphere. Let there be peace in the plant world and in the forests. Let the cosmic powers be peaceful. Let the Brahman, the true essence and source of life, be peaceful. Let there be undiluted and fulfilling peace everywhere" Prayer from the Atharva Veda, one of Hinduism’s most sacred texts (1200–1000 BCE)
"You cannot find peace by avoiding life." Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)
"Treat all men alike. Give them all the same law. Give them all an even chance to live and grow. All men were made by the same Great Spirit Chief. They are all brothers. The Earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it....Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to think and talk and act for myself, and I will obey every law, or submit to the penalty." Heinmot Tooyalaket (Chief Joseph) Nez Perce Leader (1840-1904)
Let there be Peace on earth, and let it begin with us! Namasté!