Peace for the Soul

A common space for harmonic peacemakers

"To view tragedy beyond our feeling of it adds to the tragedy and turns us into dark voyeurs. Yet just as Kwun’s rocking of the lifeless, little boy enabled her to hear and feel the suffering of those yet to come, keeping our heart open to one torn life can enable us to hear and feel the cries of all who suffer.

Which side of reality we dwell in determines whether we are offspring of Kwun and Kuan-yin, descendants of those who keep the cries of the world alive, or offspring of the warring clan, descendants of those who gut whatever is in the way, who cheer the bloody spectacle. These twin-aspects of life are closer to each other than we think. The seeds of both live in each of us. It is our devotion to staying vulnerable that keeps us caring and human.

True connection requires that a part of us dissolves in order to join with what we meet. This is always both painful and a revelation, as who we are is rearranged slightly, so that aliveness beyond us can enter and complete us. Each time we suffer, each of us is broken just a little, and each time we love and are loved, each of us is beautifully dissolved, a piece at a time. We break so we can take in aliveness and we dissolve so we can be taken in. This breaking and dissolving in order to be joined is the biology of compassion. The way that muscles tear and mend each time we exercise to build our strength, the heart suffers and loves. Inevitably, the tears of heartbreak water the heart they come from, and we grow."

Mark Nepo, Hearing the Cries of the World

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