Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Everyday peace

I'm not so good at keeping track of months going by. I'm still writing 2012 some days and I'm a little bewildered that it's already September. So it didn't quite dawn on me that another, sober, anniversary was around the corner until I picked up my pen this morning to write the date. 9/11/13.
Has it really been 12 years? I thought, flashing on the memory of that day in New York, where I happened to be, waking innocently for a yoga workshop and going to bed restlessly and too-in-shock-to-be -scared, marveling at the fact that I was still alive, feeling oh-so-well how fragile it all was. I wrote about that day for me soon after the fact, here. Today I'm feeling more quiet and pensive, scanning the years and seeing how much those events impacted the world's actions and my own personal ones. It's easy to feel powerless in the face of events like 9/11 (or the current Syrian crisis) but if there's one thing I started to learn 12 years ago, and know more now, peace is not so much a noun but a verb, an everyday activity, a practice, and that everyone has the power to make that choice. And of course, peace starts with the individual. Some everyday activities that tend to keep me aware of the bigger picture and that I've come to believe contribute to a more peaceful world include:
1) Do some yoga  (one of whose limbs is Ahimsa, aka nonviolence)
2)  Vote. CA residents can register here.
3) Connect to your local community. Volunteer. Join a group. Get to know your neighbors.
4) Get out in nature. It's a beautiful world.
5) When in doubt, take a breath.

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