Let It begin within Me

My entire life, words – be they in a book, a poem, sung or prayed – have always fed, sustained, calmed and emboldened me. And so, given the heartbreaking events of the last week, I turn to words to inform and guide.

Yesterday, I heard a Wise One share with a Student that if one’s intention is to bring balance to the world, one must be balanced in oneself. This is another way to say that one cannot offer what one does not possess or as within so without. Hearing those words felt like an answer to a prayer I was not consciously aware I had made. The floodgates opened and more words came, mostly in song, that reminded me that we will only ever really overcome someday by paying careful attention to what resides deep in our own hearts, souls and minds – as we are indeed One and the very thin line between “good” and “evil” cuts through all our hearts.

I could hear Michael Jackson singing this perspective so poignantly:

If you want to make the world a better place, You have to look at Yourself and make that change.

To reinforce this point, the powerful Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi came clearly to my mind and heart:

Lord, make Me an instrument of your peace…Where there is hatred, let Me sow love…Where there is darkness, let Me sow Light…

Even my inner child chimed in, sing and imploring:

This little Light of Mine…let It shine….let it shine…let it shine…

Eventually, all quiet on my Soul’s Front:

Ego: I get it!

My Soul: Do you really? Just in case…

And then it came, The Big One: the words to a most beloved song; one I have sung and hummed to myself since I’m a child and more than any other in my life; a song that has consistently brought me from the brink of madness borne of sadness by providing me with the invaluable gifts of light, hope, peace, clarity and profound comfort. The song:

Let there be peace on Earth  

According to Wikipedia, this beautiful song was written in 1955 by Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller. Interestingly given recent events, the story goes, in that same year “…a group of 180 teenagers of all races and religions, meeting at a workshop high in the California mountains, locked arms, formed a circle and sang…”Let there be peace on earth”…to help create a climate for world peace and understanding.”

2015, 60 years later, here we are…Let there be peace on Earth  

I’ll close with one of my many renditions of this masterpiece. When one cherishes a song, when it becomes part of your DNA/your signature, organically you tinker with it making it truly your very own (like a loved recipe). This version of Let there be peace on Earth does not stray too much from the extraordinarily moving original:

Let there be peace on Earth
and let it begin within me.

Let there be peace on Earth,
the peace that was meant to be.

With God as our Father,
related all are we (we are One).
Let us live with each other
in peace and harmony.

Let peace begin within me.
Let this be the moment now (right now!).
With ev’ry breath I take
let this be my solemn vow:
To take each moment
and be in each moment
in peace internally.
Let there be peace on earth
and let it begin within me.

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