Speaking Peace by Donna Day © 2022
Our peace nurturing practice for this week is Speaking Peace.
Words have great power. They can soothe, incite, or inspire. They can guide us to have great compassion and motivate us to understand. Words can predispose us to negative thoughts and actions. They can also bring us peace, hope, and the awareness of our oneness with others.
To be our authentic Selves as beings of Light and Love, we refine our vocabularies by eliminating words of judgment or condemnation and choose only those which spring from our hearts, our centers of loving kindness. We speak of what we know to be true: “Moon light is beautiful.” “My foot hurts when I walk on stones.” “I enjoy ice cream.” “His shoes are brown and mine are purple.”
We eliminate words and expressions which reflect unkindly on others. By shining the light of truth on our vocabulary we discover words that have no place in our hearts or mouths. Why ever, would we wish to get ourselves or others agitated and upset when we can speak words which soothe and help ourselves and others return home to peace?
Three words can make a huge difference in our lives and the lives of all around us. I learned this from my friend, Juanita. When I first met her, I was intrigued to discover she never responded to the question, “How are you?” in a rote manner by saying something like: “I’m fine;’ nor did she reply, “Well, my back aches and someone just insulted my driving, and I don’t have enough money to pay for the new roof we need…” Instead, her reply was heartfelt, mind-shifting, and inspirational: “I am blessed!” Juanita proclaimed her blessedness up to and including the day she died.
Her impact lives on through many of us who were transformed by her three words. Whenever someone asks me how I am, I almost always respond with Juanita’s words: “I am blessed.” I do it for a few reasons: it reminds me of the truth which is I am blessed to be alive and it is a simple way of speaking peace. Also, when I say, "I am blessed," I experience the results of those powerful, positive words by feeling peaceful and happy.
What is it we wish to eliminate from our thoughts and speech? Let’s begin with words of judgment, criticism, negativity, gossip, and complaint and stop using them when thinking or speaking to ourselves or others. Yes, ourselves. Sometimes that is the hardest one of all. It certainly has been for me.
We eliminate idle or judgmental speech from our lives and find more serenity as we choose words of positivity. The world has plenty of voices of doom and sorrow. Let’s remember the old adage: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all!”
When our words tell what we know in our hearts to be true, we have no enemies; we love all our brothers and sisters and discover miracles can occur when we live from love and Speak Peace.
May the words I speak flow from my heart and be rooted
in loving compassion for myself and others.
May I speak peace or remain silent.
Teach only Love
Speak only Peace
Reflection: I have savored revisiting this practice because it is so much fun! Before I comment on my inner voice: Mrs. Harsh, I want to share about the photo which accompanies this practice. My artist friend and Sister in Peace Nancy is an amazing sculptor. I am not. Under her gentle guidance, I managed to create this plaque with its uplifting guidance. It hangs in my hall where I smile at it daily. It helps me remember my goal to speak words of kindness and peace.
For me, it’s easier to speak peace outwardly than it can be inwardly. My self-talk was ruled for years by a voice which my late husband Orlo affectionately and wisely dubbed, “Mrs. Harsh.” She is relentless and expresses her dismay and disappointment in me during our mental chats. I highly recommend naming your critical inner voice as anything other than yourself for it affords you the chance to be separate from negative comments of “Mrs. Harsh" or whatever you decide to call your inner fault-finder.
It's been really good to review my self-chats while reflecting on this practice because, every once in a while, Mrs. Harsh comes back with all her downers and discouraging words. She did recently and it was fascinating to hear from her after a lengthy time without her dismaying opinions. She started telling me how I had messed up a conversation that morning and then added I had also been quite inadequate in something I had written.
Here comes the best part: I listened to her judgements and disappointments and threw back my head and laughed saying to her, “why ever do you think I would want to think such thoughts when they make me so unhappy and miserable? I have done it many, many times and I don’t like it! I would rather be happy and peaceful.” May this practice offer you freedom from negative words and judgment and instead bring you joy and peace.
Your turn: How is this practice working for you? Do you feel different when you consciously avoid non-peaceful words and thoughts? Do you have a Mrs. or Mr. Harsh too?
Thank you for being a vital part of Peace on Earth.
 “Teach only love for that is what you are.” A Course in Miracles, Chapter 6.
“Words have both the power to destroy and heal.
When words are
both true and kind,
they can change our world.”
– Dr. Vedabhyas Kundu
Please pass on the peace
by sharing this post with
friends and family.