My 5 year old son just started playing YMCA basketball. He is one of the younger players on the team and a bit intimidated. I almost let him quit. One day he asked me, “Daddy, are the games we play practice games?” I told him that every game he will EVER play is a practice game, unless he makes the pros like Jeremy Lin. But even professional games are practice games. Just because you play for money doesn’t make it any more substantial.
“I do not judge success based on championships; rather, I judge it on how close we came to realizing our potential.”–John Wooden
If you believe, like I do, that “we are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but spiritual beings having a human experience,” then our whole human existence is a practice game. We are already Gods, Buddhas, and Peace; we just need to re-member ourselves to the Truth.
I, like many other Bloggers for Peace, have been intimidated by this project. How can my trivial little posts bring about WORLD PEACE? Who am I to make a change when much greater men and women have been playing this peace game for centuries? The whole idea of peace can be debilitating. Wouldn’t it be easier to give up and do what I am good at–apathy, ignorance, selfishness?
Then I realized that the game is already won. We don’t need to create Peace; it already exists in each and every one of us. Our duty is not to change the world or become perfect peacekeepers. We just need to practice peace.
Yes, we will stumble and fall. We may post up a few airballs. But that is all part of the process. We are practicing to realize our potential, to re-member our godliness, and to re-mind us that we are all we need to be.
So my slogan for peace would be “Practice Peace.” I might even add the subtitle, “No One is Perfect.” Practice every day being peaceful. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; it’s only practice. Be forgiving of others because they too will make mistakes. In fact, be grateful for their mistakes because they will make you better. You will learn from practice, which is what it is all about–learning, realizing your potential.
God knows I have made a lot of mistakes in my life. I have not always been a peaceful person, but I can honestly say that I am practicing hard everyday to get better. Some days I work on forgiveness; other days it is right speech or mindfulness; most days I “practice” meditation. The last thing I want to do is give up.
“When people ask me now if I miss coaching UCLA basketball games, the national championships, the attention, the trophies, and everything that goes with them, I tell them this: I miss the practices.”–John Wooden
The great thing about practicing peace is that over time you realize that this practice makes you happy. The more you practice, the more peace of mind you enjoy. You come home to a peaceful marriage. You make peace with those who have trespassed against you. You become more forgiving of yourself. Like John Wooden, I will miss practices when I retire from this human experience. Until that day comes, I am thankful everyday for the privilege to practice peace.
This post is inspired by the Monthly Peace Challenge: Mad Men and Bloggers for Peace. If you want to join Bloggers for Peace, please click on the badge to your right. Remember we are all just practicing peace. You are allowed to make mistakes, try new moves, push your boundaries, or just have fun.
Thank you for reading, sharing, and/or smiling.
How would you practice peace? Please share.