There are a lot of different political definitions of what peace is. I remember learning about the terms of ‘positive peace’ and ‘negative peace’ by John Galtung or about the ‘zivilisatorische hexagon’ by Dieter Senghaas in school.
However, in this article I want to write about peace on a more personal level. I want to write about what comes to my mind when I think of peace, answering the question ‘what is peace to you?’
When I think of peace the term ‘inner peace’ immediately comes to my mind. Whilst finding ‘inner peace’ sound like the title of a sketchy self book, in my opinion being at peace with yourself is actually one of the most important things in life, not only for yourself but also for the people surrounding you. Most of the times when you want to be there for others you need to be at peace with yourself first. At least to a certain degree.
Up until now I think I’ve met very few people who were actually fully at peace with themselves. Even people who might come across as especially confident or happy often have a side to themselves that they haven’t come to peace with yet.
However, it is important to clarify that being at peace with yourself does not mean that you can never be insecure about something or that you can never have a bad day. When you are at peace with yourself you accept those things, reflect on your mistakes and try to better yourself eventually.
Another word that immediately comes to my mind when I think of peace is ‘silence’. When I’m at peace my head is usually very quiet and my thoughts are very clear. On bad days, however, I can’t seem to think straight or logically and my thoughts are loud, chaotic and fast like a thunderstorm.
Furthermore, I feel like peace is very closely connected to freedom, as in being able to be your authentic self without any fear of judgement or oppression.
In addition, I believe that mindfulness can be very helpful o the way to find peace. In this fast world we are often distracted by different medias and not fully present in each moment which sometimes stops us from appreciating the beauty in the small details of life and being thankful. This is kind of sad considering gratitude and appreciation are actually one of the best things to practice against dissatisfaction in life. They are so powerful that they are actually used in therapy to help depressed patience.
The last aspect of peace I want to mention is forgiveness. I briefly mentioned this aspect earlier but I want to clarify that it is okay and important to make mistakes and in order to grow from them we need to be able to forgive ourselves and others for them. Often holding a grudge against someone will damage and hinder you more than them.
Of course there are a lot more aspects that are important when it comes to peace but these are some of the most important to me which came to my mind. I’m still on my journey towards peace but I am certain that I will get there some day.