Do we have peace if we are not been shoot by a gun? As the word reference dictionary states, peace is freedom from disturbance; and the freedom or cessation of war. In fact, peace is not only the absence of wars and weapons; peace is an inner emotional state that can be reflected to others in order to maintain good relationships of the people around us. “Peace is not a dream; it is hard work, and there is nothing naive, glamorous or simplistic about it. (Arias 1). As this famous writer is stating; achieving peace is more than just stopping the wars, peace consists in hard and not so simple work. There can be a lack of peace without the necessary use of fighting and physical aggression, peace can also be disrupted with discrimination, stereotypes, and judging. If we want to maintain peace upon others we should have our mind and emotions cleared of bad feelings towards other people.
Even though it is a great part of it, peace is not just stopping the violence, but also to respect others way to think or act, this way you could maintain a healthy relationship with people that surround you and make your environment nonviolent. Although weapons are the ones that can cause the damage, we as humans can be interfering with peace by judging, arguing, and discriminating against others. Weapons are not the ones who disrupt peace, humans and their actions are. Many people agree that if we can destroy all the weapons in the world there wouldn? be violence any more. For instance Ecuador? s president, Rafael Correa, made a law that forbid all the security guards from having any guns or armory so he could avoid all the accidents and violence caused by them who shoot people that were innocent. Two weeks later he insulted Maria Paula Romo, an Ecuadorian journalist, by publicly calling her “disgustingly chubby” when she disagreed with him. (El comercio 23) Wasn? t our president trying to reduce violence and aggression in our country?
Instead, after he passed that law the first thing he did was insult someone! Rafael Correa thought the destruction of arms could lower the rankings of violence in our country, but he didn? t think that there were many children and people watching the news when he yelled at somebody. So how can we be a peaceful country, if our own president isn? t respecting a citizen from his own city? He didn? t use any weapons, but instead he judged a person and discriminate against her by the way she looked.
In consequence he disrupted the peace of a country that believed in him and as a result is turning this country even more violent. A tongue is the best armor a person is given and our own president is using it to hurt someone who thinks different to him. Therefore peace is achieved by not only destroying armory but also by not judging people by the way they look, think, or act. In addition, the Catholic Church is one of the most numerous expanders of the message of peace although behind that there is a lot of discrimination to the people who are different from them.
The church isn? t using any kind of violence, aggression, or hostility, however, by not accepting people who are different from them they are offending people and interrupting their harmony. Every Sunday when I go to church I hear the priest making us pray for world peace and the happiness of everyone. “For the people who believe in Buddhism, Hinduism and other foreign religions, so that they can discover the real truth and the only religion” This is what one Sunday I heard the priest making us pray for. Aren? t we all the same? How do they know their religion is the true one?
In fact, the Catholic Church also disagrees and disrespects homosexual people. Paul in the New Testament in the bible makes a statement against homosexuality stating that “Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters… nor homosexual offenders… will inherit the kingdom of God. Even though nobody knows who will enter heaven or not the treatment that some people of this Catholic group gives to homosexuals sometimes is really horrible. In my confirmation classes my religion teacher told me that it was better to stay far away from this “strange” kind of people because God wrote that being homosexual wasn? natural. But how can a God of love support this behavior against these people? Don? t gays also deserve to love someone or to have any friends? So if the church prays everyday for world peace why are they discriminating people who are different from them? Church isn? t using any violence, instead they are judging some people. Indeed this is why they are disrupting the lives of some group “Peace comes from being able to contribute the best that we have and are and let others share what they have and are, towards creating a world that supports everyone” (Abiola1).
What this Nigerian civil, human rights promoter and democracy activist established in this quote was that in order to have peace we should take and accept others ideas as well as give also some ideas of our own. As a result we shouldn? t be discriminating people for what they are or what they aren’t. The Catholic Church should distribute moral rules that God gave them but this doesn’t mean to treat others the way they don? t want to be treated. This community make an effort to distribute the message of peace but if they don? change the way of offending people by not respecting them for what they are their message is never going to be expanded. Therefore, in order to have a happy and peaceful life you should live in peace inside yourself. Many people think that the external world is what gives you peace or not. On the contrary, our internal self emotion is what gives the external world calm. For example, in the book A Separate Peace, Gene didn’t live with inner peace himself, because he had envy and jealousy towards his friend Phineas. Even though Gene didn? ever say anything or react violently he was living in pain and resentment towards his best friend. As a result, we can see that Gene started to think that everything his friend did was in order to make him not progressive. For instance, when Phineas invited Gene to play Blitzball, Gene was really angry, because he thought his friend was doing that in order to lower his grades. All these feelings that Gene had were because he lived in resentment towards his friend and consequently, he couldn? t enjoy anything, even though in the external situation there was nothing to interrupt his peace.
This anger towards his friend evolved in violence when Gene pushed Phineas out of a tree. “I was on active duty all my time at school; I killed my enemy there. Only Phineas never was afraid, only Phineas never hated anyone. ”(Knowles 196) . On the other hand Phineas never noticed that Gene had envy towards him and that is why Phineas was always happy and with no worries. Maybe Gene should have talked to Phineas about his rage rather than live with the pain of hating your best friend. “Without changing one’s self, without peace in one’s self, world peace is not possible. “(Lama).
What Dalai Lama number 14, an influential figure in Buddhism, is referring to in this quote is that we don? t have to try and give peace to the world if first we don? t change our inner feelings first. This is why peace is not only an external emotion, but a deeper inner feeling that if you don? t have it no matter what is the external situation, you are not going to have the peace and happiness you need. To sum up, peace is something that you have to achieve not by stopping wars but by changing your mind and to reflect what you are doing wrong in order to give happiness to others.
We need to have inner peace and tranquility so that we can deal with the outside problems in our society easily. So what is the big secret? How can we maintain peace in ourselves if the environment surrounding us is full of violence, bad feelings, judging and corruption? Peace will not be easy to achieve or to obtain. But in order to maintain ourselves peacefully we should always have to see at the bright sides of the problems and although sometimes this sides are hard to find we still have to keep looking for them. Don? t be blind to the problems but neither to the solutions.
Although external problems are going to affect the reactions we have to problems instead of being sad and depressed about them we should be looking at the positive things about these external issues. “Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal” (Luther King). What this Nobel Peace prize winner states is that we don? t have to see peace as an unachievable goal but a prize that we receive after achieving certain objective. Indeed Peace is something that we have to fight for, it is not as simply as reducing violence.