Aka, you can’t give what you don’t have.
World peace is a loaded term. Some people worship it, others talk about it mockingly. There are people who never think about it at all. The opinions are just as versatile, as the clothes people wear.
Some while ago, I was standing outside the supermarket after I dropped off my kids at school. I was waiting for someone. A mother, that I know a little, came with her small child, rushing towards their own school. Her son didn’t want to go to school that morning, so he sat down on the ground in protest. The mother didn’t even realize what was going on with her son. She just automatically gave a pull, but with a force that got his shoulders dislocated. A small group of other people saw it too. I couldn’t imagine her doing it on purpose at all. She looked genuinely shocked and shamed when she realized what happened.
I don’t agree with most of her choices in parenting, but I never looked at her as violent. Also, there has been no other incident like this before or since. Still, this whole thing bugged me. Should I have said something? I didn’t think it would help at all. Can I say something now, that it’s all solved and probably forgotten? I had no idea.
I offered her a Reiki treatment once before, when she was having lots of pain in her back and nothing seemed to help. She took my phone number, but never called. Another time, when she was going through a rough time, I offered to help again. She thanked me, but didn’t take my help. I didn’t think this time was any different. I felt strange and helpless. Her boy seemed to be a happy child otherwise, but I knew that didn’t have to mean anything.
This issue kept bugging me for several days. I needed someone else’s perspective to make sense of it, so when I was visiting a friend, I decided to discuss it with him.
My friend is an enthousiastic believer of world peace. He’s a father of 3, very involved in raising the kids and he does everything possible to create a peaceful environment for them.
We were sitting on the playground, watching our kids playing together when I decided to tell him what was bothering me.
When I finished my story, I sighed. It felt good to get it out. But my friend next to me suddenly exploded.
‘Those parents are criminals! You can’t go around, doing things like that, especially not to your child. I could get a shotgun and go over to her house. I could kill these kind of people. My blood is just boiling when I hear something like that. What is wrong with the world?!’
His reaction shocked me. I just mumbled something back, but he was not waiting for any answer. He was gone, far away in his rage and anger against this parent and all parents who act mindlessly.
In some degree, I agreed. Mindless action often hurts people. But my friend’s violent reaction blew my mind. At that moment I realized that this is no way to create the world peace, he wants so much. You can do all the good deeds, go on protests to give a voice to those who don’t have any, make conscious choices about your life and parenting, tell your kids to be nice to each other. But it’s not the way.
That day taught me that it all starts with me and you. Individuals, who drop the need and desire to change the world by changing others and start with changing their own inner world. Have peace inside, so that you can give peace to those around you. At the end, you can’t give what you don’t have.