Five Steps to Peaceful Resolution

“If in thirst you drink water from a cup, you see God in it. Those not in love with God only see their face in it.”–Rumi

In the past week, I’ve gotten into three arguments with three different people about faith, spirituality, and the law of attraction. All three of these people were close family members that I care about. In the arguments, my views were labeled as “insane,” “delusional,” and “desperate.” In my eyes, I lost all these arguments because I could not make the other person see what is so essential to my existence.

Since I’m practicing peace, I came up with five tips for conflict resolution:

  1. “I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony.” Everyone is vibrating at a different tone. Like the keys on a piano, we are all part of the same instrument. Trying to tweak a B minor to sound like a C sharp will only bring discord. (I have no idea what a B minor or a C sharp is, but they sound like something I heard in Amadeus.) Try to harmonize with the vibration of others in a positive way. Like a simple call and response, you can empathize with their point of view and support them by echoing their feelings. “I know in your eyes I am acting irrationally, and I appreciate your concern.” Above all, don’t judge. There are higher and lower vibrations, neither is better. All are necessary to sing the body electric.

    The man’s body is sacred, and the woman’s body is sacred;
    No matter who it is, it is sacred;
    Is it a slave? Is it one of the dull-faced immigrants just landed on the wharf?
    Each belongs here or anywhere, just as much as the well-off—just as much as you;
    Each has his or her place in the procession.–Walt Whitman

  2. Hug all humanity Rather than wrestle with the views of others, soften your heart and simply hug them with compassion. No matter what our words or actions my look like, we are all the same. We all want the same things. We are all just looking to be happy and free from suffering. There is no argument when we can see that we are all part of the same God.
  3. “Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.”–Francis de Assisi Don’t overestimate the power of words, and don’t underestimate the power of actions. Live your life as an example rather than use your words as a cattle prod. It takes more time and patience, but isn’t that what practicing peace is about? Words are like microwaves–quick, easy, but the heat does not last. Instead, marinate those around you with kindness and love, then slow cook them over time with tender compassion. 
  4. Look inwardly–After all three of these arguments, I did some self-reflection. I realized that I was not practicing what I was preaching. I was not compassionate, empathic, nor accepting. I acted defiant, spoke harshly, and judged unfairly. I realized that the real argument I was having was with myself. Look inward and root out the doubts, insecurities, and negative emotions growing in your own garden before you sell your vegetables to others.

    I’m wary of you
    But you’re oblivious to me
    I’m chained to your ego
    And there isn’t a key
    I play with emotions
    But never my own
    Don’t you recognize me
    Try looking inwardly

  5. Let it Be Can’t have a post on peace and music without Lennon-McCartney. I love this song. I listen to it over and over. I sing the words out of tune. Yet I always forget to “let it be” in my daily life. Maybe I need a tattoo. Paul McCartney knew that humans have a tendency to forget which is why he repeats the chorus 41 times in this song.

    For though they may be parted, there is still a chance that they will see
    There will be an answer, let it be
    Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be

Looking over this post, I realize that I am hungry and I need to listen to some music to quiet my soul. Thank you for reading, sharing, and/or smiling.

How do you resolve conflict with those you love? Please share.

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85 comments on “Five Steps to Peaceful Resolution

  1. C. R. says:

    A portion of the proceeds from every piece sold from the “squidoo” b4peace page “lens” goes to a charity called “Peace First” http://www.squidoo.com/bloggers-for-peace

  2. Beautifully written. “Look inward and root out the doubts, insecurities, and negative emotions growing in your own garden before you sell your vegetables to others.”It
    Wise words, Kozo…wise words. 😉

    I usually resolve conflict by letting everything cool down and then calmly talking things out. Trying to make the other person understand why I felt or feel the way I do. I also try to ease their worries by listening to their side & trying to see their point of view.

    Arguing really sucks doesn’t it? Ugh. I usually feel so drained and upset afterwards. Seeing things in this light helps. I may not be so quick to snap when I feel offended or hurt now. 🙂 Thank you for this, BBF.

    • Kozo says:

      Thanks, DDiW. I love the idea about letting everything cool down. Sometimes we get flooded and it doesn’t matter what people say or do, we just are not ready to make peace. I wish they had meditation “time outs” for adults. Devote a small space in your house where you can just sit, undisturbed. You can call a time out for yourself or for your partner. 15 minutes minimum. If we ran it like time out for kids, then you would have one minute for each year you have been alive. haha.

      I agree that arguments drain us. I think the goal is to stop the argument before it happens. 🙂
      {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  3. jmgoyder says:

    I have only just figured out how to solve conflict with people I don’t love, so now you have me thinking again! Wonderful post.

    • Kozo says:

      Julie, you just keep spreading the love and I don’t think you will have anyone who doesn’t love you, Ant, and Ming. Thank you for reading and commenting.
      P.S.
      Waiting for photos of you in your biker outfit. 🙂

  4. seeker says:

    Kozo: check out Juliette Garesche who helped found Peace Learning Circles. It’s a non-profit organization that teaches conflict and resolution skills mostly for children. An adult can learn from the children. Juliette wrote a pamphlet titled “Conflict Resolution Therapy”. It’s short, sweet, easy read.

  5. seapunk2 says:

    Your Rumi quote – why must it be one or the other? As your post indicates, there is often more than two ways to see or accomplish something. 🙂

    • Kozo says:

      I totally agree, seapunk2. There are multiple ways of seeing everything. We just get stuck in black and white–or actually just black or just white.
      The Rumi quote reflects the argument I had with my family members. I guess you could say it was a jab at them for not seeing my spiritual point of view. (See how egotistical I am. Even in a post about conflict resolution, I am still arguing my point of view.)
      I do, however, like this quotation because it reminds me to give up ego and be grateful to God/the Universe.
      Thank you so much for reading and commenting. I took a quick look at your blog and am putting it on my to-do list. I love the Pacific Northwest and can’t wait to take my kids there to hug some redwoods. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

      • seapunk2 says:

        Thanks for your thoughtful response to my observation. You’ll need a crowd to hug one of the ancient redwoods! If you haven’t watched – National Geographic did a documentary called “Climbing Redwood Giants” and in it, one is able to realize the scale of the trees.
        If you’re ever in the area, look me up. I’d be happy to share a hike or direct you to the most unique places here. 🙂 Darylann

  6. Geo Sans says:

    Excellent post.

    I appreciated reading your reflection and I’ve learned lots from you.

    ~

    As for me, I have a general process for working out disagreements.

    ~

    When disagreeing, it helps firstly to “agree to disagree.”

    People become defiant if you are trying to “change” their minds.

    Just ask them to firstly “listen” to your statement, ideas, reasons, etc.

    Have them agree to let you talk uninterrupted for around 5 minutes (10 minutes at most)

    Let them know, once you are done, you will gladly listen to their vantage point.

    Also, let them know, you will not interrupt them.

    ~

    After listening, thank them for sharing.

    Tell them, you appreciated hearing their input.

    Tell them you’ll think and reflect on their words for a day or two.

    Ask them to do the same for you.

    In a few days, you both have the freedom to adjust your perspectives.

    Don’t try to work everything out right there … open minds will only start closing.

    ~

    NOTE:

    As you mentioned, a forum like this does not judge the other.

    Also, at the start, remind people to use respectful words.

    ~

    hope this helps

  7. Lady Lovely says:

    Conflict resolution for me-it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. For example, when my sister in law tries to tell me I’m wrong, I say, “that’s fine, that’s your opinion. I am allowed to view the world from my eyes. I don’t have to view them from yours.” That usually keeps her quiet. To me, it’s about the conversation, not turning every conversation into ‘make me think like you do.’ We are all individuals and will never, most likely, always see eye to eye, and that’s allowed. I tell people not to shove their opinion down my throat, as I don’t shove mine down theirs.

    • Kozo says:

      Your comment is making me realize that I was arguing out of my own insecurities, Lady Lovely. You are right. We are all individuals who are allowed to see the world as we want to. Why did I feel the need to convert others to my point of view. I could lie and say that I was concerned about their happiness, but the truth is that I was trying to get reinforcement for the choices that I have made. As usual, I was trying to get approval. (Damn, when are those high school insecurities ever going to go away? haha)
      Thank you so much for your wisdom, Lady Lovely. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

      • Lady Lovely says:

        Hugs my friend! Sometimes, it takes a simple moment like posting a blog, to make us realize the little things in life. It happens to me all the time too 🙂

  8. Dieu says:

    How humble of you to look inwards Kozo. Most people would criticize those who judge them. Instead of judging those who judge you for your “insane” opinions, you look toward yourself. Great advice. It tells us that you can’t control the actions of others, that how you react is what is important.

    • Kozo says:

      As usual, Dieu, you pack a lot of wisdom in a few words. I used to listen to that Chameleons song over and over in college, but I never “heard” the lyrics. Now it makes sense in relation to your comment. You are so right about controlling how one reacts. I once read some graffiti that said, “You will not be judged by what others do to you, but by how you react.” Thank you so much for your insight. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  9. We always take the high road while others leave a bad taste in our mouth, I guess we must spit in private smile, and keep going. I Thank you…for being YOU.

    • Kozo says:

      Trust me, 1G4AW, there are a lot of people who spit at the mention of my name because I was so toxic in my interactions. I’ve had to be knocked on my ass by the Universe numerous times to finally realize that I am the source of the problem, not others.
      Thank you so much for your kind words. I am trying to get better and better everyday. Friends like you make me want to take the high road. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  10. theINFP says:

    What I’m about to say I mean with the greatest respect, Kozo. Maybe if you were less hard on yourself you’d be less hard on others. Pretend you are holding something so fragile in your hand that you need to think before making a move because it will break with a wrong move. {{{HUGS}}} Robert

    • Kozo says:

      Wow, Robert. I just beat myself silly responding to the last few comments and then I come to the warm embrace of yours. Blogging is a miracle. God is in the blogosphere. You are so right. I need to be more compassionate with myself if I want to be compassionate with others. I have read all the quotations by the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh about inner peace for outer peace, but I keep “forgetting” in my daily life. Your comment hit home because it occurred precisely when I needed it. //bow//Thank you, Robert, for being the voice of Obi Wan right when I was heading for the Dark Side.||bow|| {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  11. Rohan 7 Things says:

    Great post and great advice Kozo 🙂

    Particularly number 3. The most effective way to affect change in another is to be a shining example of that which you practice and believe. I would hate for someone to come to me and force their way upon me, but when I see a happy, peaceful being I ask “What are they doing to make themselves so contented?”.

    Two sayings I always think of in this regard “Do unto others as you would have them do to you” and “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. So much power in those two statements.

    As a student of Stoic philosophy I like number 5 as well. Acceptance and more acceptance, patience and letting time pass 🙂

    Thanks for sharing! Hugs 🙂

    Rohan.

    • Kozo says:

      Rohan,
      I love those two sayings as well. I think I will paint them on the walls of my sons’ room. I can’t think of better advice on how to be a good person. I love how we trade philosophies, quotations, ideas, and energy on our blogs. Thank you for the boost of positive energy, Rohan. {{{Hugs}}} kozo

  12. John says:

    Ah, metaphysics! To me that’s what all discussions and disagreements and differences of opinion regarding matters of faith and spirituality and religion and cetera (i.e. law of attraction) are about.

    This is what I’ve learned thus far in life about discussing spiritual / metaphysical ideas.

    Metaphysics is a touchy subject for most people. Namely because it’s what we rely on—in the same way that a person alone in the middle of the ocean clinging to a life preserver can be said to be relying on that life preserver— to gain stability emotionally and keep our bearings in life. For most people, their metaphysical beliefs—whatever they are—are matters of life and death! It’s what allows them to go through life without having to face the fact that deep down they are likely full of doubt and fear and feel very lost. Having some belief system, be it traditional or more new-agey, is what helps people allay these fears and doubts, not go through life with a sense of dread and perpetual existential anxiety.

    One of the best things in such discussions, in my opinion and in my experience, is to realize this—to realize the perhaps desperate situation we’re all in. The Buddha was very practical: he set aside all metaphysics as speculative. Rebirth or not? Who really knows. What he focused on was doing what he could about the brute facts of life: suffering, illness, old age, death, and our clinging and grasping and attachment.

    In the post you blogged from Valentine’s Day or the day after, there was a nice poem by Hafiz in it, about living with a full moon in each eye and being to others what they’re dying to hear.

    Hard to do, when we’re each dying to hear something ourselves—when we’re dying to hear others validate or affirm or understand something that is so essential or central to ourselves. But that’s the wisdom behind “seek first to understand” and “be the change you wish to see in the world.” If a person wants his or her spiritual views / opinions accepted, start by accepting others’ and trying to really understand their point of view. Be the change, be the person with the full moon in each eye.

    In my experience, disagreements and differences of opinions and debates don’t become arguments unless one person walls up or unless neither person is practicing to seek first to understand (or unless one person’s views are dangerous when actually lived and practiced with other people).

    If one person can practice seek first to understand and can be detached from their own point of view and instead remain curious, open, inquisitive, then differences of opinions will remain civil and just at a difference of opinion, and not escalate into an argument.

    Lastly, well, second to lastly, before really debating spiritual matters, it’s always useful to gauge where the other person is in life in terms of their dedication to truth—how committed the other person is to really exploring ideas, or how attached to their own ideas they are. Not everyone we meet is a Socrates or a Buddha. In fact hardly anyone we meet is that way. Most people, deep down, are frightened, insecure, especially intellectually. And most people are very attached to their own ideas—their own ideas are familiar, known, comfortable, and people do not like the pain of a new idea—too much thinking required, too much discomfort, too disorienting, too much vertigo, too much uncertainty and anxiety. Thinking critically, being objective, opening our minds, is a difficult process. Most people are attached to their own points of view, use them as life preservers, cling to and clutch them like life preservers. The ego, at best, wants to agree to disagree, and at worst wants to be right always and wrong never (so agree to disagree sounds great to the ego when it’s scared). But better than “agreeing to disagree” is the saying “it’s not who’s right, but what’s right.” On the surface this can sound scary—that there’s such a thing as right or objective truth, especially in this “love and light” “my truth” society of aperspectival madness where tolerance and acceptance and kindness are our highest virtues, and truth and growth are just given lip service. But to me, the higher meaning of “it’s not who is right, but what’s right” is that it can be a reminder to remove ego from the equation and to be more objective. And even if only we can do that while the person we are disagreeing with wants to “agree to disagree,” the discussion can usually go on further than if both people were trying to hide out behind “let’s agree to disagree” (that phrase is almost always used as a cop out. Someone feels like they’re on shaky ground, they can’t defend their position reasonably, and they don’t want to deal with the pain of a new idea or seeing things in a new way, and so “let’s agree to disagree” is offered as a way of shutting things down, as a call for a truce. Truth doesn’t matter, not overheating and being overwhelmed is what matters. And in fairness, maybe the person isn’t very skilled at debating and isn’t a critical thinker, so perhaps they’ve had their mind stretched and expanded enough for one sitting, so let’s agree to disagree is code for all of that).

    And lastly, how do we know that our own ideas are any better or more correct than the other persons? Ours might be wrong, errant, et cetera. The only real basis we have for believing in our point of view is not continually reality testing it and trying to confirm it, but (a) trying to disprove it and refute it, and (b) since we’re talking, metaphysics and spirituality, which tend to be fairly speculative and rely on such things as “intuition” and “gut feelings” to prove their truthfulness (which is probably what the other person and his or her perspective is running on as well), and since our own ego probably will prevent us from ever becoming detached enough to actually ever really try to disprove our own point of view (because we’re not Socrates or Buddha or John Stuart Mill or Gandhi), then we have to be open and welcoming to any and all challenges to our point of view.

    So, for me, this is basically what I keep in mind whenever (which is rarely) I’m having a real life real world metaphysical or speculative discussion with another human being.

    On the other hand, when blogging and commenting, I tend to be more straightforward. Why? Because it’s in writing and writing can be stepped away from and come back to—the other person has much more control—even though there is the expectation that things have to be answered and refuted quickly, that there’s some imaginary shot clock ticking.

    Anyways, thank you very kindly for the pingback and link to my post and blog.

    Warmest regards, Kozo,

    John

    • Kozo says:

      John,
      First of all, thank you so much for the time and effort you took to compose this very well-written and insightful comment. I am honored that you care enough about this post to make such a thorough analysis. I am grateful that you published this in response to my personal experience and concerns.

      Second, I completely agree with all your points that I fully comprehend. I now realize that when my views were called “desperate,” I took offense. (One could say, I went on the offense.) Suddenly, this discussion turned into an attack on my life preserver. Your point about the Buddha is well taken–we are all always already desperate–first of the Four Noble Truths. Everything and everyone is impermanent. I have known not to “cling” to material objects, but for some reason I did not transfer this idea to thoughts. I was/am clinging to my thoughts on spirituality in the face of uncertainty, change, and fear. I need to take my own advice and just “let it be.”

      Third, your point of “seek to understand” reminded me of the zen phrase “beginner’s mind.” My ego is so intrusive that I can never maintain a beginner’s mind. I need to be more empathic and compassionate, rather than rigid and demanding. I love the imagery of being the person with the full moon in each eye.

      Lastly, although not really lastly since I plan on discussing this with you further on our blogs, as you can see below (or above, I’m not sure where the more recent comments go?) I agree that “agreeing to disagree” is a cop out. I love your phrase “not whose right, but what is right.” But I’m not sure I completely understand it. I understand that we should take ego out of the equation and focus on what is right in general. What I don’t understand is your statement “especially in this “love and light” “my truth” society of aperspectival madness where tolerance and acceptance and kindness are our highest virtues, and truth and growth are just given lip service.” I assume you are talking about truth with a capital T. I see the way to Truth is through “light and love,” kindness, and acceptance. We have to practice the Truth. I just read somewhere that once the Truth is said/written, it is no longer true. (I forget where the quotation comes from–who said it, which blog posted it.) How do you propose we do more than give lip service to the Truth?
      Thank you again for your generosity with your time and knowledge. I look forward to seeking deeper on the path with you. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  13. merbear74 says:

    You had me at Lennon/McCartney. {hug}

  14. When someone has a different opinion I just say “that is your opinion” or “your opinion has been noted”. I do this to remind myself that it is okay if others have opinions but their opinion isn’t my truth. I also remember the difference between fact and opinion so I can remain more understanding especially to myself. I may be a little different about my approach because invalidation at one time used to eat me alive. I use boundaries for safety and self respect effectivess if I feel someone has been overtly disrespectful. I don’t back down anymore. I used to be much more of a passive person who seemed like I knew how to turn the other cheek in the face of conflict. Not anymore. I stand firm. Yet now is the time I am striving towards the art form of loving irreverence to help me to communicate in a more effective way with others. Also I have the goal of understanding people for who they are…it is what it is..guides me…even if someone’s opinion is upsetting. I can do that to a point already but the key for me is to use more forgiveness.

    • Kozo says:

      I agree that we need to be more detached from these heated arguments. I like your phrase “it is what it is.” I also like your movement towards forgiveness. I like to think of Gandhi’s passive resistance. We can disagree, but I am not going to back down and I am not going to attack. I am going to act with non-violence in words and actions. Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom on this important topic. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo
      p.s.
      What happen to the Mindful Gatekeeper blog? The link on your comment goes to a new blog.

  15. KM Huber says:

    Oh my, Kozo, what a beautiful array of comments on your thoughtful post, each providing you another perspective. To cite Maya Angelou, “when someone shows you who they are, believe them…the first time.” It always helps me remove the you vs. me element from any conversation so I may listen to what the other person is saying. My hearing that person’s beliefs is my gift to them as well as to myself for we all want to be heard, and sometimes silence is a response.

    Once again, thank you for being so brave, Kozo.

    Karen

    • Kozo says:

      Karen,
      I love that Maya Angelou quotation. I have never heard it before. I also love how you say that actively listening and empathizing with another is your gift to them. As usual, I need to be more giving. haha.
      Thank you so much for being such a wise and generous BBF. I thank WANA every time I read one of your posts or comments. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  16. dmauldin53 says:

    I usually ‘Let it Be’. I’m not one to argue. I prefer harmony, hugs, and love. I don’t preach with words, I try to show with my love and my life. Looking inwardly is something I’ve just recently started and I’m learning a lot about myself and my actions.

    • Kozo says:

      Thank you, Debra. I need to start preferring “harmony, hugs, and love.” I think I still prefer argument at times. And yes, looking inwardly is an incredible practice. I’m finding that most everything has to do with me. I know that sounds egotistical, but I’m actually realizing that once I take me out of the equation, I can become we. Don’t know if any of that makes sense, but I, too, am a beginner at looking inwardly. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

  17. Kozo, thanks for sharing this post. I have often avoided sharing my thoughts and beliefs with others because I am concerned about their reaction. You are right that the real conflict is within and choosing to harmonize with the frequencies of those who think differently is a better choice. I also think that my path is right for me, that doesn’t mean it is right for anyone else. If others have questions they will ask, if they want to follow my example they will follow. I don’t have to say a word.
    This is the kind of thought provoking art that makes you a brilliant blogger and allows you to contribute so much to the blogging community and to the world. Thank you my friend, for these and many other reasons, you are the man!

    • Kozo says:

      Jonathan,
      I love how you are comfortable just being you. Like you said elsewhere, “I am who I am.
      Your statement “I also think that my path is right for me, that doesn’t mean it is right for anyone else. If others have questions they will ask, if they want to follow my example they will follow” struck a chord with me. I do need to let others follow their path and lead by example. Thank you for your kind words and your guidance. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo
      p.s.
      NO, You da Man.

  18. diannegray says:

    My dear Kozo – arguments with family are the worst because they know you so well and they know exactly where your ‘buttons’ are! I’m sure we talked a while ago about surrendering to the universe and this is such a case. If we live peace it will come back to us, it’s a simple as that. I don’t believe an argument is ever ‘won’ by either side because one person walks away gloating and the other walks away feeling defeated. This is letting the ‘personality’ interfere with the ‘soul’ which leads to imbalance. When an argument ensues it’s usually all about the person who starts it. It’s about THEM and their beliefs, they want to impose some kind of power over someone else (regardless of who that person may be). When I think of power I see two kinds – spiritual and physical. Spiritual power is the one that helps us evolve into the souls we want to be, physical power send us back to the stone age. If some members of your family think you’re doing the wrong thing or have gone off the rails, let it be, let them think that – it makes no difference to the beautiful soul that you are. You don’t have to prove anything, just be you {{{hugs}}}

    • Kozo says:

      God I wish I could give you a real hug, Dianne. You always say exactly what i need to hear at the time (even if you are not speaking specifically to me–ie your blog posts). I love the division of power into physical and spiritual. LOL at the stone age comment. I do believe that spiritual takes us towards the light, while physical takes us away from the light.

      Dieuonthegrass posted an Alan Watt’s quotation that is similar to your last line. “The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.”
      I like how you put it better, Dianne–we don’t need to prove anything.
      Thank you for being there for me. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

  19. So timely it is eerie…thank you for stretching my neurons Kozo

  20. Tracy says:

    So many great comments here Kozo and great responses from you too. Of course your post is brilliant in the first place, your willingness to take responsibility for situations and really search inside is worthy of this bow /\o. to you 🙂 Ages ago someone told me it’s impossible to truly love and respect another unless we can show that same love and respect to ourselves. This is very similar to Robert’s comment. From experience I know this to be true. Once I learnt to love and respect myself for who I am instead of chastising myself for what I could be or all the things I am not, I was much more able to love and respect others. I loved and respected them for who they were rather than being hung up on the things they weren’t… then the conflicts melted away. You are many things Kozo, all of them are good and worthy of much love and respect.

    • Kozo says:

      Thank you, Tracy. I just thought of something that I think you were implying. When we argue with or lose respect for others is when we need to turn the spotlight on ourselves. Why did I feel the need to argue? What parts of me are afraid of being judged to make me want to judge others? All conflicts in a sense can be mirrors to help us discover ourselves. This is in line with a saying I like “all attacks are a cry for help.”
      I’m definitely going to follow your example, Tracy. Maybe one day I’ll be as loved and respected as you are–and receive 5 blog awards every week. haha.
      {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  21. grandmalin says:

    There’s really nothing new to add after your excellent five steps and all the great comments. Just wanted to let you know I read every single word. I’m a very good listener. Now it will be interesting to see if I actually learned anything. lol You’re a very lovable guy Kozo, I don’t know why you’re so hard on yourself. {{{SuperHugs}}}

    • Kozo says:

      Thanks, Grandmalin. I love hearing from you. Thank you for reading every word and listening. I’m with you on the learning curve. The reason I post these steps is to remind myself to practice what I preach.

      To be honest, GL, I’m hard on myself because I’ve hurt too many people in the past. I need to balance out 40 years of selfishness and egocentric behavior with the next 40 years of peace, lovingkindness, and service.
      Thank you so much for your love and support. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  22. vision5d2012 says:

    Hi Kozo — wonderful post. Aren’t relatives just the best mirrors?! I wonder sometimes how I ever was born into the family I was. I’m the only one who thinks the way I do. Smiling and hugging (a lot) works. Especially at family reunions. The St. Francis advice of actions are more effective than words in these instances works really well. Our kindness and acceptance can bridge the gap between belief systems much better than words. I forget that all too often. Fortunately, my sister loves me enough to forgive my insensitivities. All five of your points are well made and valuable. Thank you, Alia

    • Kozo says:

      Great advice, Alia. I think I went to the party with a mindset that caused the argument. I had read a post that said that our vibrations are influenced by those around us. I thought about how no one in my family is spiritual. I almost didn’t go to the party because I did not want to be around lower vibrations. I was judgmental rather than grateful.
      I like your advice to be kind and accepting to bridge the gaps. I tried to drag my family members across the gap and was frustrated when they resisted.
      Part of my frustration comes from the fact that I have so many like-minded friends in the blogosphere. As you and Tomas have written, there is a change happening in the Universe towards a higher vibration. Why don’t any of my family members recognize this? Maybe they do, but intuitively.
      Thank you for being my like-minded, wise, and loving friend, Alia. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

      • vision5d2012 says:

        Family gatherings are usually a “slippery slope” as they say in AA. The conditioning and patterning of our childhood seems to clobber us on the head before we can get our wits about us. I am blessed to have Tomas as an ally at such times, so that when I feel myself begin to slide, I can ask for his support. He has his own family patterns but they are not with MY family, so he can be a grounded center for me at such times and vice versa. Even if there is one other person in your family who has done any personal growth work, you can buddy up and agree beforehand to be supports for each other. OR you may excuse yourself, from time to time, go outside and touch the ground and clear your head. If it gets really bad, you smile, say your “goodbyes” and go home. I have done all these things. Some are “circumstance specific” if you know what I mean. All the best, Alia

      • Kozo says:

        These are such wise words, Alia. I am definitely going to try the go outside and touch the ground. Knowing me, I will probably be found hugging a tree. 🙂
        I also have another strategy of getting online and visiting my BBF’s blogs. haha.
        {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

      • vision5d2012 says:

        That’s funny — because I almost wrote: “Go outside and touch a tree” but then I didn’t know if you would have many trees where you live but my first instinct was to connect with a tree.
        As far as touching in with fellow bloggers — excellent idea! Just type something into anyone’s comment section. Doesn’t matter if they are online — the energy will transmit and you’ll get confirmation — sometime, in some dimension. 🙂

      • 1EarthUnited says:

        Kozo & Alia, you are both wise souls. It’s nice to have a “virtual” family whom we can all fall back on as our lifeline, support system. I especially want to acknowledge Alia for her selfless devotion to humanity and sharing her divinely practical advice. I am grateful for growing spiritually and every way with you wonderful beings. Our journey is so precious, I’m bursting with joy, resonating with you guys always. I love you Kozo, Alia, Tomas, you’re all very special to me. ♥

      • Kozo says:

        The feeling is mutual, Maddy. I can feel the real hugs we will all share when we have our first B3Peace conference. Believe in miracles. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

  23. 1EarthUnited says:

    What I’ve learned in my 25 yrs on this beautiful blue crucible:

    1. A very wise person once told me it’s all practice. Life gives me infinite opportunities to learn the lesson until “I” get it. And it’s ALL practice, life’s a -B- that way!
    2. We’re all born with 2 ears and 1 mouth, there’s a reason for this biology, the big guy rarely makes mistakes.
    3. Practice rules 1 & 2, you’re practically home free – literally!

    So, ♫ Relax don’t do it
    When you want to to go to it
    Relax don’t do it
    When you want to cum ♫

    God, there’s such wisdom in song, LOL! Wouldn’t U agree? ☼

    • Kozo says:

      LOL, Maddy. You are an old soul in a young body. How do you know so many songs from the ’80s if you are only 25 years old?

      I love your list. I especially like the line about being “home free.” I also forgot that “the big guy rarely makes mistakes.” The Universe put me in this family for a reason. If everyone believed what I believe, I wouldn’t have come up with this list. I wouldn’t have looked inwardly. I wouldn’t be talking to you right now. I’m so grateful for “the big guy/gal.”

      {{{{Hugs}}} Kozo

      • 1EarthUnited says:

        YouTube is such a blessing, I refer to it as God’s channel to the ears, transcends time and space. I love all music genres before year 2000 – demarcation between soul/ soul-less music. You know exactly what I’m talking about! 😀

  24. When I read this post I thought of the song “let it be” from the Beatles. “whisper words of wisdom. let it be…”

  25. Today I definitely did not practice what I preach. What is it about family members that bring out the worst in us? I wrestled…I cannot hug. I will sleep soon and tomorrow I will try again.
    We all get up each day and do the best we can…
    x annie

    • Kozo says:

      Such wise words, Annie. Thank you. Maybe we can think of wrestling as a frustrated {{{Hug}}}. 🙂
      I, too, will start anew this morning. I had a bad practice last week, but that is why they call it practice.
      “Everyday I’m getting better and better.”
      Love you, Annie. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

  26. Sunshine says:

    i like your words…”Live your life as an example rather than use your words as a cattle prod…” yup, and the cattle will thank you for being more gentle and more understanding too. 🙂

    you know the story of everyone trying to climb the mountain to reach the top, & with many ways to get up there… we all proceed in our own way making tracks, but the ones at the bottom of the mountain preaching to everyone the BEST way up, never go nowhere. they stay at the bottom…preaching and preaching. so, we either preach til we are blue and fainty or go our own way up. in the end, the ones who are truly seeking truth will eventually find it.

    peace, my friend. ♥ (great post btw)

  27. raimyd says:

    I’ll keep these 5 steps to peaceful resolution handy, I’m even printing them out and thumb tagging them to my wall at work. This is where I feel complete lack of peace and where I’m going to have to put effort into peaceful resolution. Thanks for this post, and by the ways I loved the Walt Whitman poem you included, he is one of my favorites.

    • Kozo says:

      I saw that you mentioned Walt Whitman to one of your commenters, Raimy. He is a gem.
      I need to print these out and thumb tack them to my forehead. If I could just follow my own advice, my life would be so peaceful.
      Thanks for reading and commenting. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  28. Another AMAZING post Kozo. I adore this excellent list, and I especially like numbers 4 and 5. How many arguments happen throughout the world in a day where we do not realize the real one we are arguing with is ourself? That’s perfect and profound. Reminds me of something Einstein said, that if we do not understand a concept well enough to explain it simply to a 5-year old then we do not fully understand it ourselves. This has been on my mind lately because I want to ensure I have fully internalized what I feel and believe well enough that I could explain it to a young child. My own inner child! 😀 Ok in looking back over this comment I realize that I am also in need of sustenance 😉 With so much gratitude for you and your wonderful role-modelling here! Every single visit raises my spirits even more!! Wheeee!
    Loving friendship and Happy {Hugs} Gina

    • Kozo says:

      Go get yourself a nice peeled and skinned grapefruit, Gina. haha.
      I love the comment about being able to explain our ideas to our inner child. 🙂 I have a 5 year old, so I can practice explaining things to him.
      I’m starting to believe that all the arguments I get in stem from something inside me, whether that be ego, the need to control, or insecurities. The less I argue the more at peace I am with myself.
      Ok? Let’s eat! {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

  29. Subhan Zein says:

    The line by Rumi is sublime! O my God, I cannot feel my legs!!!

    I’m typing with my middle finger, as my index finger is so painful, it was hit by the automatic door a couple minutes ago, hahaha, but as I was reading the line, I couldn’t feel my legs!

    I guess that’s the difference between sublime poetry and others, thank you for sharing Kozo, the fifth principle is also my favorite, yes let it be! much love to you

    • Kozo says:

      Wow, Subhan, I hope my post did not cause you bodily injury. 😦
      I agree the Rumi post is sublime. Make sure you pass on any poetry that makes your legs numb in the future. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  30. “Words are like microwaves–quick, easy, but the heat does not last. Instead, marinate those around you with kindness and love, then slow cook them over time with tender compassion.”

    I like this! and yet…

    …for me the core of the issue is the actual belief that there is someone else with whom I am having a vebal/non-verbal exchange. There isn’t.

    “You alone are” said the sage and he meant it very, very literally. That is the one and only fact to wake up to and it changes everything. Then, slowly but surely i begin to recognize the absolute absurdity of wanting to change someone “else’.

    Krishnamurti once said “the ‘other’ is the greatest obscenity”.

    We are love and we are one big, huge, soft and fuzzy HUG!

    ♥ Your Brother in Love, Tomas

    • Kozo says:

      Tomas,
      I just came from my cultivating compassion course and I had the same revelation. We are all one, so the people we are having difficulty with are part of us. Our difficulty does not lie within the other; it lies within ourselves and our inability to see that we are all one.
      Thank you for your vision and love, Tomas. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo
      P.S.
      Tomas, I follow your blog, but your posts never show up in my wordpress Reader. I can see some of your posts in B4Peace, but I often don’t see when you post up a new post because I am checking the Reader. Do you know why this happens?

      • No, Kozo, I don’t, but I will inquire with Timethief, who has the site for WordPress blogging tips and ask if she might know why that is. I have noticed that my reader doesn’t bring up all the ones I follow either…? ♥ Tomas

      • Hey Kozo – I inquired about the Reader and got this:

        “Following Blogs
        When you follow a blog on WordPress.com, all new posts from that site will appear in your Reader, where you can view all the latest posts published across all the blogs you follow.”

        So that seems clear enough – but I am not sure it really works that way, maybe I’m following too many?

        I did discover, however, in the Reader, on the right-hand side, “Blogs I Follow” and then “edit” – when I click and “edit” opens up, I can then click on “alphabetical” and this is the easiest way to find a certain blog. Then I click on the blog name and get ALL the blog’s posts, starting with the latest. Hope this helps, it certainly helps me.. 😉 ☼ ♥ tomas ♥ ☼

  31. […] Five Steps to Peaceful Resolution […]

  32. I look around my blog community, the ones that are still here even the ones that have left and I see how everyone is part of this journey I’ve been on. I wanted to be more compassionate, more present in my life. I wanted to learn how to work though my inner maze especially when I feel lost. Thank you for being honest with your reflections of self. It really is helpful even if I don’t always say so. Thank you for being Kozo! {{{♥}}}

  33. marcusampe says:

    Lovely to hear those words again which we proclaimed so much in the 1960ies. Lets me feel back home again. 🙂

    Took you on the Bloggers For Peace Links and do hope you wan spread some love thoughts.

  34. […] We are a community that is devoted to the pursuit of happiness through lovingkindness, gratitude, compassion, and empathy. See 5 Steps to Peaceful Resolution. […]

  35. […] We are a community that is devoted to the pursuit of happiness through lovingkindness, gratitude, compassion, and empathy. See 5 Steps to Peaceful Resolution. […]

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