10212017Headline:

When the World Wrote Letters

By KM Huber

I miss letters–both the receiving of and the responding to—written words on paper, folded and placed in an envelope as a response, as an inquiry or mere musing whenever the wonder of the world exceeds explanation. For me, that is often, and I return to the letter, at least in format, seeking the separate peace it offers.

Dear ?:

Deliberately, I choose a question mark rather than a noun for a label serves to exclude, and this is a letter to existence, the life force that runs through all we see and do not see, an undulating peace with no destination or goal but as a way of being.

“Peace begins when expectation ends”

~ Sri Chinmoy~

The planet seems so much smaller now as we crisscross it on a daily basis through images and words on screens in instant communication with almost anyone anywhere. It has brought us all face to face.

Ideals, illusions, and even institutions have been shattered as we find ourselves in immediate relationship with so many voices shouting so many points of view. There are few gaps, if any, between thoughts.
Sunday Anhingas 0313

Yet, it is reminiscent of the time when the world wrote letters. Then, as now, the challenge was whether to respond or to react. Pen and paper required more of us, slowing our initial reaction, increasing the chance of a thoughtful response but certainly not guaranteeing it.

Peace is not an ideal, an illusion, or an institution for it is not a finite but an infinite state of being. The staying power of peace is inherent in each individual’s response to the ever-present impermanence of life. That everything and everyone changes is the oneness that connects us all—it opens up the options–while expectation narrows the possibilities, separating us from the whole.

As always, I am overtly optimistic, which is not to say that I am unaware of how taxed our planet’s resources are or how many species are either being pushed to the edge of their existence or are already extinct. I am only too aware that “the world is too much with us” to the point of making my head explode but as I write my letter, I remember:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has

~Margaret Mead~

It is a matter of putting our individual house in order from the inside out. When we accept ourselves as we are, we learn compassion, recognizing our faults and forgiving our mistakes, accepting our own existence unconditionally.

Practicing peace from within is a lifetime task and is meant to be. We cannot give to the world what we do not have within our hearts, and what is within is as changing as the nature of existence. Whether we respond thoughtfully or react immediately will define our inner peace.

Yours in Impermanence,

*******************************

KM Huber is a writer who learned Zen from a beagle. She believes the moment is all we ever have, and it is enough. In her early life as a hippie, she practiced poetry, and although her middle years were a bit of a muddle, she remains an overtly optimistic sexagenerian, writing prose. She blogs at kmhubersblog.com, may be followed on Twitter @KM_Huber or contacted by email at writetotheranch[at]gmail[dot]com.

© 2013 KM Huber. All content on this page is protected by copyright. If you would like to use any part of this, please contact me at the above links to request permission.


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