Thursday, April 30, 2009

A Quiet Power

Franklin Roosevelt once said, "Walk softly, but carry a big stick!" I am certain some people may think this type of thinking represents weakness, but to me, it represents combining humility with strength and intelligence-a more integrated, balanced form of strength. What if the whole world operated this way, combining humility and reverence for all of life, with strength? War would be a lot less common indeed. When I think of this kind of silent power, two great men come to mind, Martin Luther King Jr. and Gandhi. Both were amazing individuals who understood the sacredness and reverence for all of life. They both preached and practiced nonviolence and had a tremendous amount of quiet power and strength, a giant inner power and strength that heavily influenced millions.

This quiet power I am referring to here, is closely related with non-violence. There is a Jain scripture I really appreciate, "A piece of blood-stained cloth cannot be washed with blood, we need water to do it." Gandhi also said, "I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary, the evil it does is permanent" and "An eye for an eye makes the whole world go blind." There is a Indian, Sanskrit word for nonviolence (ahimsa). Ahimsa does not just mean the absence of violence, it means the greater unnameable force opposite of violence. This force is a potent force that emanates in the soul. There is much power in the soul. The same power that created and maintains this entire universe is a part of each of our souls. Power doesn't have to be so dominant, so aggressive. That type of power isn't genuine power anyway. Gandhi and Rev. King both accessed and utilized this deep, inward, soul power I am referring to. They proved that nonviolence can solve political upheaval. War is a disease, a disease that keeps re-infecting the world. Someone has to stop it. If we don't, it may be our demise. Enough is enough...

Ironically just now as I am writing this, I received an email from a friend that had a short movie clip of an elephant and a dog that are the best of friends. This is a true story from an elephant sanctuary in Tennessee. At the end of the clip it said, "come on world, if these two can get past their differences, why can't the whole world?" I don't know about you, but right now, I choose for a time of great peace in the world, a peace that can only come as a result of this kind of quiet power operating inside all of us. I choose to operate from a sense of this quiet power. I choose a new world of cooperation, equality, and nonviolence. Imagine if everyone chose this kind of power! We could really transform the world!!!

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