Peace for the Soul

A common space for harmonic peacemakers

Throughout history, the human race has struggled with the concept of peace. Unfortunately the very nature and complexity of the human mind and the depth of emotions that we are capable of feeling make it very difficult to achieve and maintain any level of peace. But peace dose not require that everyone think and act alike, it simply requires that we all have a reasonable level of respect and compassion for how others choose to live, as long as their behavior dose not cause harm to others. Therefore having a good understanding of human nature makes it easier to live and let live.
P. A. P. I.
Pro-Active Peace Initiative

The PAPI organization would be dedicated to providing educational programs primarily for adults who have children. These programs are to provide parents with the tools or skills that help to build strong humanitarian values in their children. I know that there are a lot of parenting workshops, classes, books, magazines etc. so you might be saying who needs another parenting workshop aren’t they all pretty much the same. Well the PAPI program is not intended to be an all-inclusive parenting skills program. Rather it is more like in addition to or complimentary to other programs.
The PAPI program specifically targets issues that are directly related to humanitarian character traits. The reason I am focusing on educational programs for parents is simple, children go to school to learn reading, writing, and arithmetic among other things. Schools are busy enough teaching the traditional lessons and a lot of schools these days even have what they call character education which is itself a worth while effort but we must be careful not to overload our school system because that starts to have a negative impact on the quality of education. Therefore, by educating parents we are giving them the opportunity to be more effective in building their Childs moral character within the home environment.

What lead me to the idea for PAPI is that I can remember as a child hearing my mother commenting on how children are able to get away with many things that would not be tolerated when she was a child. Now as I raise my own children I realize that I can very easily say the same thing.

Therefore, I think it is obvious based on these observations to conclude that with each generation we see a decline in societies over all moral values. How much longer do we think this trend can continue before we are reduced to behaving like vicious wild animals I am sure that day is coming sooner that anyone realizes. So what should we do? We need to come up with something to turn the trend around and that is exactly, what PAPI is intended to do.
The proactive part of PAPI is wear the kids come in. If the parents have acquired the knowledge and skills that allow them to create a loving and secure home which fosters a healthy emotional state of mind, then their children will grow up with deep and powerful sense of appreciation for life in general and they will in turn pass this on to their own children. Then you can start to see that the generational trend will start turning towards positive instead of negative. This process will help to eliminate or reduce the kind of thinking and behavior that leads to aggression and conflict in the first place. That is what I mean by a proactive approach to peace. Of course, this process obviously is long term but that’s ok because I am not doing this to make MY LIFE better, I am doing it to make LIFE better for everyone especially my children. Most parents want what is best for their children so why would they be ok with leaving their child to grow up in a world that is filled with hatred and violence. If anyone has trouble getting motivated, they can simply think of their child’s future and what kind of world they will inherit.

. The point that I am trying to make is that if humanity continues on its current path we will be responsible for our own destruction. What makes it worse is the destruction will be slow and agonizing and many people will suffer from the cruelty of others. I don’t want my children to live in that kind of world.

I have become very passionate about working towards a more peaceful world. I’m not sure where this feeling has come from but it nags at me every day. I believe it may have something to do with some tragic events that have happened in my life. Let me explain. First of all, I am an alcoholic I have been sober since March of 1999. I first started having a problem with drinking around 1987 or 1988. The problem was progressing and continued to get worse. Then sometime in 1989, I met my future wife. As our relationship became more and more serious, I realized that I had to do something about the drinking. I didn’t care that much about myself but I didn’t want my problem to end up hurting her so I stopped and I even made a half assed attempt to get involved with Alcoholics Anonymous which didn’t take hold because I wasn’t ready to except it. However, I did manage to stay dry for about a year then I started up again it didn’t take long before it started destroying my life. Of course, it was also destroying my marriage. Then my wife was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which was a nightmare. We ended up being separated but we also tried desperately to save our marriage. In time our relationship started to improve by 1996, we started thinking about living together again. However, on February 2nd of 1996, only 4 days after her 25th birthday she and her sister were in a car accident. I sat in the hospital for eight hours, but they couldn’t save her but her sister survived. About a week later my mother who was in the same hospital passed away. Needless to say, I was devastated. My dad, who is also an alcoholic, was devastated as well. It was somewhat ironic that father and son were experiencing the grief of losing our wives at the same time. My father started drinking again after around thirty years of being sober but he couldn’t take the pain and ended up committing suicide about one year after my wife and mother died. For him I guess you could say that the alcohol contributed to his death because he was drinking at the time and alcohol takes away your inhabitations. For me however the alcohol kept me numb. The rest of my family were all convinced that I would have some kind of permanent emotional breakdown. However, time does heal and I think the numbing effect of the alcohol is what kept me sane long enough for the healing to begin. But the alcohol also took me to a very dark place were depression is what you wake up to every day and all you can think about is numbing the pain and try to ignore the emptiness. It is a misery that I would not wish on anyone.
Thankfully, for me after several years the darkness began to lift and I could feel my spirit being restored. Then I decided to get sober so I could go back to doing all of the things that I once loved. I also realized that my outlook on life had changed and I became much more aware of all that goes on in the world specifically the decline of society as a whole. As a result, I have become deeply troubled by the state of the human race and ultimately the fate of this world that we have seriously taken for granted for so many years.
There are many people who spend a lot of time talking about the earth and how we are slowly destroying the planet. For the most part, I agree with the overall opinions of the fate of our planet and what needs to happen to stop the destruction and to repair the damage. However, my concern has to do with what we have done and continue to do to ourselves. I personally believe that each and every human being on this planet is responsible in their own way for the fate of the human race as a whole. If every Human Being who sincerely cares about the fate of the human race, and what we leave to our children where to stand up and do what needs to be done they would be amazed at what we could accomplish. This is why... I CARE. These two simple words could potentially carry the strength and power to bring this world a little closer to PEACE. If we show GOD that we truly care about the human race, he will give us the strength and courage to do what he would have us do for our own fate. When you help your child with their homework, do you give them the answers just to get it over with? No. If you care then you will guide your child toward the answer, but ultimately you want them to find the answer, that is how they learn. There is not much point in going to school if you’re not going to learn anything. GOD, our father has the power and the wisdom to give us the answers that would solve all our problems but he wants us to find the answers so that we will learn how to be what he wants us to be. There's not much point in life if we don't learn what GOD wants us to learn. It is tragic to think that our society has come to a point were human life as well as just life in general has very little value.

“All that once was sacred has given way to greed and hatred”.

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Comment by desmond dillon on June 25, 2010 at 5:39pm
joseph i find your personal story motivates me to write a little about 'peace' not as a concept but a practical experience. it is within all human beings and the opportunity that time provides is to discover the constant feeling for yourself. the approach is not a matter of thought but of the innocence of the child within us all. to introduce you to the direct experience i point to kind regards des

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