How Soon Is World Peace?

By Rev. Zoe' McCollum
Address given at the Institute of Mentalphysics, Joshua Tree, CA, August 31, 2003

Let's begin talking about our beliefs about world peace. There are two main ones.

First, we've never had peace so we never will!

Our current history has nothing about a time of peace everywhere. Suppose it's wrong? Suppose as we find out more about our ancient history, we find there have been periods of great peace? At one time everyone believed the earth was flat, yet it never was. I've never been to Niagara Falls. Does that mean I never will? Doubtful…

Another objection to the possibility of world peace: we need to defend ourselves.

From A Course of Miracles Workbook…

I have given everything I see all the meaning that is has for me….My mind is preoccupied with past thoughts…I see nothing as it is now… …I am not alone in experiencing the effects of my thoughts….I have invented the world I see…There is another way of looking at the world….I could see peace instead of this…. Love is the way… I want the peace of God….My mind is part of God's, I am very holy… There is nothing my holiness cannot do!"

Practically 1/3 of every constructive effort of every man…who ever lived has been taken away from him…to destroy his fellow man.

We have only begun to find out that enmity can be transformed into friendship only by giving friendship, hatred only by giving love…. fear only by assuring security…"

Walter Russell, truly a genius, founded the University of Science and Philosophy in Virginia for the transformational study of Universal Law, Natural Science and Living Philosophy. He spoke to IBM in l936. Here are snippets of his presentation…

It’s a monstrous fallacy to assume that the goal of peace, prosperity and happiness for man can be reached by killing him or stultifying the power of right thinking in him.

For ages, the Power of Might has been ruthlessly utilized by rulers for just plain loot…. later by Government for trade expansion. The Price by the Power of Might has been paid in the Best Blood of the land, leaving the race poorer by war's constant draining of the best manhood of each nation.

In addition to lowering the moral and physical standards of the entire race by keeping alive its primitive instincts of fear, there is the colossal destruction of the fruits of man's industry.

Practically 1/3 of every constructive effort of every man…. who ever lived has been taken away from him ……to destroy his fellow man.

We have only begun to find out that enmity can be transformed into friendship only by giving friendship, hatred only by giving love…. fear only by assuring security…

We are seriously pursuing a $60 billion missile defense shield that most experts conclude won't work, though it will likely provoke a new arms race.

Now in the United States...

With 4.5% of the world population, we consume nearly half of the world resources, and force is used to keep this status quo.

We control over 50% of the world arms market and provide military arms and training to 160 of 190 nations of our world.

We are seriously pursuing a $60 billion missile defense shield that most experts conclude won't work though it will likely provoke a new arms race.

We refused to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

We spend more on military arms annually (about 275 billion) more than the rest of the UN Security Council combined.

These facts come from Brian Willson, A Vietnam vet now a peace activist, April 2003.

Apply this to our leaders who were fearful about Iraq. Being fearful, could they have seen anything besides war as a solution, could enough of the American people?

When the tragedy of 9/11 happened there were messages of sympathy from throughout the world. There were also outcries of "evil America". I wondered…is America evil…aren't we the good guys, aren't we for peace? Others have looked very closely into our foreign policy actions.

Could it be that 9/11 is a case of what goes around comes around?

Current information suggests IRAQ never did have major weapons nor was IRAQ responsible 9/11.Yet these were the major reasons for war with IRAQ, our government and most media told us.

Dr. Willis Harman Past President of the Institute of Noetic Sciences and co-author of Paths to Peace points out there are new techniques of diffusing conflict that could be developed…. and disarmament and arms control are definite steps toward peace.

We can see that the U.S. is not taking these steps; in fact, we are doing the opposite.

We have never given peace efforts a real chance to work.

It takes time, it takes the expressed will of us the people. If we put as much attention, money and humanpower on a peace program as we do on defense and war, imagine how different our world would be!

We think 60,000 thoughts a day and 98% of them are the same ones we thought yesterday. So the maxim "Change your thoughts change your life" works.

Remember the definition of insanity: "doing the same things over again and expecting different results!"

What about eliminating the fundamental causes of war…poverty, starvation, lack of housing, of educational opportunity.

But the most major shift is a change in the way people think, believe, about war and peace! Now many believe in scarcity and war, when abundance and love are the truth we don't see…yet!

Beliefs can change.

A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street, going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching for kids darting out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something.

As his car passed, no children appeared. Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag's side door! He slammed on the brakes and backed the Jag back to the spot where the brick had been thrown.

The angry driver jumped out of the car, grabbed the nearest kid and pushed him up against a parked car shouting. "What was that all about…who are you? Just what the heck are you doing? That's a new car and that brick you threw is going to cost a lot of money. Why did you do it?

The young boy was apologetic. "Please mister…please, I'm sorry…but I didn't know what else to do," he pleaded. "I threw the brick because no one else would stop…"

With tears dripping down his face and off his chin, the youth pointed to a spot just around a parked car…

"It's my brother," he said.

"He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can't lift him up!"

Now sobbing, the boy asked the stunned executive, "Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair: He's hurt and he's too heavy for me."

Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He hurriedly lifted the handicapped boy back into the wheelchair, then took out a linen handkerchief and dabbed at the fresh scrapes and cuts. A quick look told him everything was going to be okay.

"Thank you and may God bless you," the grateful child told the stranger.

Too shook up for words, the man simply watched the boy push his wheelchair-bound brother down the sidewalk toward their home.

It was a long, slow walk back to the Jaguar. The damage was very noticeable, but the driver never bothered to repair the dented side door. He kept the dent there to remind him of this message:

"Don't go through life so fast…… that someone has to throw a brick at you …….to get your attention!"

God whispers in our souls and speaks to our hearts. Sometimes when we don't have time to listen,

He has to throw a brick at us.

It's our choice to listen or not.

For world peace we need to pray, to listen, to speak, to write, to take action!

It's our choice!

I believe the time will come when war is not an option, very soon I hope, especially now that we can destroy our world…. even by mistake.

Exactly when that time comes is up to us. It's our choice.

Actions are being taken. More are needed.

Rama Vernon, a young mother went to Russia during the cold war for a yoga conference. There, she had this idea of bringing small groups of Americans to visit Russia.

For about 10 years and 4 more children, she led groups of "Citizen Diplomats" to Russia to see their cultural sites, to visit their cities, to eat with them, to talk with their Russian government and their Peace Committee and visit everyday people even Refuseniks in their homes.

I went on one trip. The introductory weekend was in frigid Finland were we prayed and meditated to be able to hold two opposing points of view simultaneously and concentrate on our similarities.

After about four days of touring, our young Russian guide climbed on our sightseeing bus and pointing to her heart said, "I want to have what you have."

What she meant was our attitude holding opposing points of view and concentrating on similarities. That was one result of our prayer and meditation…followed by action.

Over the years, the Soviet government relaxed its vigilance and permitted Rama Vernon much leeway in the places she could take her groups.

Many Russian teenagers were invited to the United States as guests, by other groups too.

Later, there was a concurrent Television Broadcast in Russia and the U.S. set up by the News Reps, friends, from both countries. The broadcast featured ordinary people in the two countries, simply asking each other questions.

What came out was, "We are all the same."

Russians are not the evil people our government told us they were… .and vice versa. Over time the cold war ended.
 

What came out was, "We are all the same." Russians are not the evil people our government told us they were… .and vice versa. Over time the cold war ended.

Don't you think these individual actions helped to end our cold war with Russia?

Remember the Berlin Wall? Recently I met a Southern California Businessman who is a "lookalike" for Gorbachev. They're friends too…."Gorby II" made a powerful three minute video showing him on a big wrecking ball knocking down the Berlin Wall to the catchy tune of the "Gorbachev Rock" with people of all nationalities streaming through the wall…. the idea being we are all one.

This video was shown in Russia and throughout Europe.

One businessman showed it to his employees who didn't like it at all and castigated him for even showing the video.

Yet a year later an employee told this businessman that seeing that video was the most important thing that had happened in his life!…another result of speaking out.

Three years later it actually happened …the Berlin Wall came down. Don't you think this video had something to do with it? ….another result of speaking out?

I had a chance to talk more with Gorby. I asked if he had ever done a video before, he said no….the idea just came to him….and neither he nor his partner had ever written a song before, but they wrote this one, and it was fun!

This recent July, 11 teenage girls from Israel and Palestine came to New Mexico to learn about each other's point of view and make new friends at the "Creativity for Peace Camp" sponsored by the Deva Foundation.

James Twyman has had his peace concert right here in Joshua Tree at the Integratron as well as around the US….. and the world.

Online he has a meditation course to help create that coherence the Maharishi refers to….the hundredth monkey shift.

This past July at the Mission at San Juan Capistrano, Father Joe the Catholic Franciscan Priest there, invited the Minister from Calvary Baptist and the Minister from a Born Again Christians Church to join him in a Saturday Service at the Mission, each one preaching that night.

Wouldn't you say that's a pretty unlikely combination?

At the Lorretto Chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico, there is a new form of inclusive Catholicism which blends New Thought, Shamanism and Catholic ritual.

It is called the Catholic Church of Antioch. In the opening welcome, it is made clear that gay, married, and women priests are part of this order. All are welcome at this church.

There have been numerous peace demonstrations, letter writing, phone, fax and email campaigns to legislators…the President. MoveOn.Org sponsored the first online all citizen based pre primary for the Democratic Presidential nomination.

There are many other Peace Organizations that we don't hear about through our media but are available on the Internet…..but not enough people speaking up…..yet!

In a front page article of LA Times, Aug.3, 2003, there was an article, "Peace Palace Proposed for Los Angeles."

The Maharishi Mahesh Yogi who brought TM here is building 3,000 Peace Palaces world wide. As the Maharishi's Minister of Finance and Planning says so beautifully in his letter…. "to glorify your City, to be cherished by people around the world for its most noble influence of peace in the world now and for all future".

"Efforts to establish world peace have failed thus far", the Maharashi says, "because only destructive means have been favored in the world…."That's the same point Walter Russell made and Willis Harmon made.

Rev. Martin Luther King put it this way…

"A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death."

Are we doing the same things over again…hoping for different results?

This Spring Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich, now running for the Democratic Presidential nomination re-introduced his Department of Peace Legislation to establish a Cabinet-level Department dedicated to peacemaking, headed by a Secretary of Peace, appointed by the President with Advice and Consent of the Senate.

Just think with me about that.

Can you imagine Mr. President being presented another alternative, a viable alternative to force ..as we begin to look at conflict in a different way?

This Dept of Peace would focus on nonmilitary peaceful conflict resolutions….analyze foreign policy and recommend actions to the President on intervening before violence begins…

This Peace Academy would provide a four-year concentration of peace education requiring graduates to serve in programs dedicated to conflict resolution!

We now have four war academies, Annapolis, West Point, Air Force and Coast Guard. We take them so much for granted, we don't really think about their purpose.

Do you ever notice how in the United States we say we want peace, yet our actions appear to be different?

If we really believed world peace was possible what would we be doing?

Perhaps things we are not doing now.

Many people feel that peace...seems impossible.

They don't know quite what to do about it. Prayer and meditation is the definite first step…especially prayer and meditation with intent, to show me my way of expressing peace…show me my part.

What's so important about expressing our desire for peace?

To begin with, hearing yourself talk strengthens your own belief.

It helps us learn how to articulate our thoughts. We get practice listening to others different opinions.

We learn to be okay listening very carefully and fully to opinions we don't agree with. That's holding two opposing points of view at the same time.

Often, people simply want to be totally heard, with no argument from us.

To shift the beliefs and actions of many more individuals toward peace, we need creative ideas. They can come out of listening carefully to people's objections.

...Every time we see anyone taking an action that shows us they want peace, our belief is strengthened. Our confidence grows stronger. The possibility of world peace become more real. We become more confident about taking action.

When we finally speak to a neighbor who we never thought favored peace and they do, or we see people we knew at a peace march or taking some other action for peace, then our belief is strengthened and there's is too. It's reciprocal….and it spreads.

Here's another person's response for peace coming from their own inner urging for expression….

Chris Belknap, an Orange County Architect has submitted one of 5,200 entries from 62 countries and 49 states for a peace design for the four acres within the 16 acre site for the World Trade Center Memorial.

According to Chris this is the largest number of designs ever submitted for any project to date…and this is a peace memorial!

On his design of shimmering glass and cascading water for the 3,022 souls who perished there are listed their name, age, citizenship, employer or their branch of service… public, military, volunteer etc.

Also to be included are exhibits and figures on the state of our planet at the time, it's health on which we depend, the state of human well being and misery.

According to Hunger Project figures last year 20,000 individuals die each day from hunger related causes… not famine but the persistent lack of means to buy food.

In the Forum of Contemplation and Vision, two facilitators will be present.

Each visitor will be asked to express from their heart, what would need to be in place in their community, their nation, the world for sustainable peace and no one be left behind.

All answers will be kept. There will be a large video screen… beginning a world wide dialogue on how we can change ourselves and our world…. developing into a worldwide commitment to work together….Isn't that exciting! I think so!

A prototype of this type of Forum was built in Hawaii several years ago. His website is designearthsynergy.com.

So change is happening!

More is needed!

Yes, there have been peace demonstrations, letter writing campaigns, internet voting on possible primary presidential candidates and congressional issues, peace activities and more we haven't heard about…but not enough yet for a major paradigm shift!

What about a nationwide contest open to all towns and cities, irrespective of size or any other parameter… to develop sustainable peace in their community with everyone included?

Each would develop their own criteria on what sustainable peace meant to them and how it would be implemented……perhaps employ one of Chris Belknap's forum prototypes…. and be able to be in touch with other towns to see how they were doing it, exchange ideas, work together on parts….

…..Peace is not a boring, still, thing….It's active! It's change! It's challenge! It's excitement!….an ever changing adventure, to new ways of being, doing….This can be an amazing journey…All of us can be heroines and heroes. Everyone is needed.

Begin to imagine more details about what peace could bring.

When we aren't spending billions and billions on weapons and armies and training our young people how to kill more effectively, some of our bright minds can be redirected into cleaning the air and water, which is certainly the first order of business.

Air and water do not follow national boundaries, you know .

Not only could we bring back all those teachers who are being let go now…and even add more teachers….we could change our curriculums, change our whole scheme of education for the 21st century and beyond…just for starters. That alone would be exciting!

There's a huge need for clean power, there's the spot for that non-polluting free zero point energy we keep hearing about…..

organic food, health needs, so many new forms of healing and prevention, housing…. spiritual education and practices, learning of all kinds..….living in space, maybe on another planet with extraterrestrials!

Lots of new jobs would be needed….to do all this.

Can you imagine the daily TV & News even 50% positive? Headlines…..

NO NATIONAL DEBT!

TAXES LOWERED AGAIN!

JOBS WAY UP!

Those things go hand in hand.

Our wisest people being willing, able and honored to serve in a much smaller government which is clearly acting for the good of everyone….that our U.S. is cooperating with every other nation on our planet…. as we all work together in harmony on all manner of stimulating projects for the well being of all.

Indeed there is a new energy on this planet, and it is us.

How soon world peace is…. depends on us!


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