“The only way you can preserve peace is to prepare for war…”
I am sure I was not the only one who found this recent public statement challenging. This week people across Australia gathered to remember the devastation, loss and grief of war. Surely, we can find more life giving, life enhancing ways towards peace. Surely, there are words of hope that could be spoken for these uncertain days. Lest we forget.
In these recent weeks people have gathered. For Ramadan, Easter, Pesach, Theravada New Year, Anzac Day. People gather to remember, to celebrate, to reflect, to remind themselves that they are a part of something bigger. These are the rituals that bring us into community and into a shared sense of meaning, purpose and connection. Perhaps one way to preserve peace is to create more of these opportunities for shared ritual, for shared meaning making. For the things that bring us together and remind us of our shared humanity.
This is of course the essence of spirituality. In our soon to be launched report The Future of Spiritual Care in Australia, Australians talk about what spirituality means to them. One person stated,
Unity and spirituality go hand in hand. Part of spirituality is caring for others, respecting your community, putting positivity out there…Unity and looking out for people is a massive part of spirituality.
This research found that as people grow in their spirituality, they are more likely to experience peace and a sense of purpose. Let’s have the conversations about how people can connect with their spirituality, because this is a path to peace that leads to unity and compassion.
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