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Peace Beyond the Pain – 5 Peace Building Practices

Last week I wrote about sadness and gratitude. Today let’s explore perfect peace.

Even during sad times, perfect peace can and does exist. It’s not a tricky balance or even a paradox. Perfect peace is a result. How? By immersing oneself in deep truths consistently in what is the nature of existence and wisdom philosophies. Possibly there are other ways, but this has been my path. The beauty of this life of choice and practice is that it has immediate and long-term benefits. 

As physical beings, we can’t escape the pain associated with such. Yet, we don’t have to suffer needlessly. We actually don’t have to suffer at all.  When we choose to develop our consciousness state and understand that we are not separate from the whole, then we ignite a world of exceptional possibilities and then live some of them. Just how good can it get? 

Walk on the beachPeaceful Practices

  1.  Most every morning, I wake and look forward to my time alone with my higher Self. It is my path to complete freedom, to joy, to happiness, to bliss.  I say most, because the tricky part is when you are a guest in someone’s home. My alone time is most usually curtailed and it keeps me in longing.  I find ways to help with this, sleep headphones are very helpful. With the thought of respect for another’s space, I don’t impose my private times into their life. 
  2. My other mainstay for serenity is to be outside. It is a lifeline and I crave my time outside. Here I am inspired, encouraged and rejuvenated. There is a connection between the light of day and our inner self that communes beyond our complete understanding. At least it’s beyond my understanding. I have read about it, but most importantly, I experience it. Try it out. Make a goal to be outside everyday for at least 20 minutes. You may have to dodge rain showers or button up the coat tighter, but it’s so worth it.
  3. Another key to my peaceful state is limiting media, specifically news, social networks and entertainment. So do I live in a cocoon? No, I manage to be aware of important events or happenings, however this awareness is managed. My media entertainment is mostly limited to social interactions, family over for movie night, etc. Social network activities are sporadic or useful for a specific purpose.
  4. I have a continued practice in my life. It comprises two elements: the present moment and gratitude. I pet my puppies and acknowledge they live this way too. They only know now and they are always grateful for the attention, walks, treats and closeness to me.
  5. I use music as a tool. I have speakers throughout the house and have it going almost, always!  Reflective, instrumental in the morning, classical when I’m creating, roots music for chores, dinner music, dancing music, jazz, rock and roll, etc. I’m grateful for services that help me curate exactly what I want to feel or contribute to a mood.

All of this to say, yes even though I have built peaceful practices in my life, I still can feel sad and miss the physical connection of a loved one. The caveat is I don’t let that rule my life. I feel it, then move on. I appreciate the passion that resides within me. I hope to never ever lose that as long as I walk this Earth plane. 

These practices do provide peace and are how I seed my consciousness. Much love to you my friends. Julia

As I finished writing this, I went next to write out the sixty-seventh verse for the Tao Te Ching. It is a perfect follow up and I was greatly encouraged all over again. 

Tao Te Ching – Sixty-Seven

The world may say that the subtle Way of the universe which I describe is great, but that it has little bearing on worldly life.

Truly, it is just that it is not definable, like the small ways of the world, thus it is indeed great.

There are three treasures which I embrace and follow closely: the first is to be kind; the second is to be simple; the third is to not put one’s own importance first in the world.

Because kindness and compassion can produce courage, simplicity can thus be broadened to contain the world.

By not putting your own importance first in worldly affairs, you will not impede the natural growth of all things.

If a person endeavors to be brave without first being kind, great purposed, without first simplifying his life, an authority, without first denying himself, he cannot evolve freely from strife, and is only courting destruction.

Kindness can help to win a war. Kindness can help to defend a fortification.

Kindness will invite the corresponding energy of kindness from Heaven through all the divine beings who support and protect.

— The Complete Works of Lao Tzu: Tao Teh Ching and Hua Hu Ching by Lao Tzu

Julia Parsell is a Certified Holistic Health Counselor with an emphasis on the intersection of science and the sacred.  She writes from experiences and transformative understandings that have led her to an authentic and peaceful life. She goes by these names: mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, niece, cousin, and friend. As a home educator of her three children, she also developed/ran cafes, and maintained various leadership roles within her community.  Her greatest desire is to encourage others to live life fully.  Her passions are family, art creation, writing, and trailblazing. She loves her life in Western North Carolina.   

 




My Process for Becoming Peaceful and Empowered

First of all, if my rights disempower you, then my priorities should be scrutinized. Fearful acts or hurtful responses are one and the same, disempowering. Blame, disgust or finger pointing are but the antics of the weak, the disempowered. Recognize the value of each other regardless of opinions, color or creed and then we will get to a destination that is brighter. A location that feels good, like a comfortable home.  

Photo by Leslie Ryann McKellar

I share with you my process for becoming, not just knowing. Understanding that the intellect serves us in some respects, but wisdom serves all. Becoming what? More peaceful, more loving, more kind and steady. Becoming empowered!  

Below I describe some ways I practice to live presently. The more you consciously practice, the sooner you experience a state of contentment and peace.  

Release judgments. I haven’t arrived at this completely, but I do practice release mindfully. My practice includes recognizing it and then quickly letting it go. In this practice I write about and read works that support this concept. 

A gentle answer turns away wrath.  I still have a ways to go on this one. It’s not like I shout at people or family. It is more like this: one of my life strategies has been defensiveness. I don’t like it. I ask myself why? To answer is to go back in time and understand my personality. Many times I take the path least traveled. In doing this, I also make mistakes. The mistakes don’t bother me so much, I look at them as avenues. What does bother me is someone’s judgement upon me because of my choices. Sometimes it’s easy to let go and sometimes I feel the need to justify my actions. Thus defensiveness becomes a pattern. And as I said, I don’t like it.  My responses can be sharp and thus my mantra for this year, a gentle answer turns away wrath is something I know but still need to practice. So, I will take a deep breath, release and remain quiet or be very gentle.  

Paradoxically, as a courageous woman, I often don’t care what others think. I know what I need to do and do it. I am a trailblazer and sometimes I get cut and bruised. It is part of the territory. Of course I take into account I see myself as others do not, for each of us see one another through the lens of our own perspective and experiences. Thus as I offer myself grace and forgiveness, I do the same for others.

A practice that has suited me for most of my adult life, even when raising children, has been to rise early and have a period of solitude. This has been my lifeline. In my early adulthood it included Biblical studies and Christian authors. This practice served me well and I have expanded to accept a broader range of wisdom teachings. The Tao being foremost in my expansive awareness practice. It follows many if not all of the teachings of Jesus and preceded him by about 2400 years. Thus as I was raised in the Christian faith and continued with it well into maturity, it has an impact on everything I study. Yet, understanding that truth surpasses time, setting and individual interpretations. It stands on its own for all to benefit. So my passion is in the wisdom teachings of the world, flavored with Christ’s words. This I know to be Christ consciousness, higher awareness, the Second Coming of Christ as all these terms apply.

If you desire a peaceful life with minimal conflict and preserved perspectives, rather than inherited ones, I suggest the text of the Tao. I love the particular translation as noted below. It is well worth contemplation, especially in these difficult and trying days. Here are a couple of selections. I would love to have copied the entire text.

A great country is like the lower regions of a river: a place where all the streams of the world unite. She is the mother of the world. The peaceful and feminine always overpowers the masculine. Being peaceable, one takes the lower position. Hence, if a great country can lower itself to greet a small country, it will win the friendship and trust of the small country. If a small country can lower itself to greet a great country, it will win the friendship and support of the great country. One wins by taking the lower position, while the other wins by remaining low. Thus, if each is to find its proper place, the one that is great must place itself low and offer help.

Ch.  61, Tzu, Lao. The Complete Works of Lao Tzu: Tao Teh Ching and Hua Hu Ching . SevenStar Communications. Kindle Edition. 

The subtle melody of universal life is eternal and constant, yet only those who are in consonance with it can perceive it. “Kind prince, listen only to one who speaks with life. Obey that law which is so subtle it cannot be written. Follow only the one who does not show himself. Worship the unformed, embrace the unnamed and unite yourself with what is not entrapped by any form that existed before Heaven, Earth or Man. Respect the one who makes no demands. Say what cannot be said in words. Have intercourse with the subtle. Offer unconditional love to all life and trust the invariable, positive nature of the universe.”

From Ch. 81, Tzu, Lao. The Complete Works of Lao Tzu: Tao Teh Ching and Hua Hu Ching . SevenStar Communications. Kindle Edition. 

Be at peace, live well, love well and judge less. Be kind and empowered, ❤️ Julia

A note about the picture, my friend and next door neighbor through the woods sent this amazing sky shot last night.  Thanks, Leslie!

Julia Parsell is a Certified Holistic Health Counselor with an emphasis on the intersection of science and the sacred.  She writes from experiences and transformative understandings that have led her to an authentic and peaceful life. She goes by these names:  wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, niece, cousin, and friend. As a home educator of her three children, she also developed/ran cafes, and maintained various leadership roles within her community.  Her greatest desire is to encourage others to live life fully.  Her passions are family, writing, and trail blazing. She is happily married in Western North Carolina.