from Practicing Peace in Times of Warby Pema Chodron Then the path of peace depends on being patient with the fact that all of us make mistakes. And that’s more important than getting it right. This whole process seems to work only if you’re willing to give yourself a break, to soften up, as you
AGAPE is more than romantic love, it is more than friendship. Agape is understanding, creative, redemptive good will toward all men. Agape is an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return. Theologians would say that it is the love of God operating in the human heart. When you rise to love on this level, you love all men not because you like them, not because their ways appeal to you, but you love them because God loves them. This is what Jesus meant when he said, “Love your enemies.” And I’m happy that he didn’t say, “Like you enemies,” because there are some people that I find it pretty difficult to like. Liking is an affectionate emotion, and I can’t like anybody who would bomb my home. I can’t like anybody who would exploit me. I can’t like anybody who would trample over me with injustices. I can’t like them. I can’t like anybody who threatens to kill me day in and day out. But Jesus reminds us that love is greater than liking. Love is understanding, creative, redemptive good will toward all men.
by Stephen and Ondrea Levine
Sujata used to say, “Let it go! But if you can’t let it go, I guess you’ll just have to communicate.”
Communication is a crossing of our boundaries. At best, it attempts to transmit the heart. At least, it attempts understanding.
Because everyone seems to be born with perceptual quirks unique to their personality, or what some call “karma,” misunderstanding naturally arises between somewhat different “realities.” When this occurs, communication becomes a peacemaker, an attempt at understanding sent out by carrier pigeon over the fortress walls. We think the moat of our affected indifference will protect us. But our castles are burning. And in our confusion, we try to hide smoke instead of extinguish the fire. Much of our “communication” is an attempt at smoke control. Much comes from the fear that another will see us as we fear we really are-confused and clever, hidden and theatrical, self-interested, angry, distrustful. We are afraid to share our grief, so little of ourselves have we surrendered to its healing. We weigh our words. No one says quite what they mean. We bargain for love in dulcet tones like a cat wrapping itself, purring, around our ankles.