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PEACE a Zoom talk by Swami Bhaskarananda 7 pm Pacific time

February 9 @ 7:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Article for Global Vedanta by Swami Bhaskarananda plus poem by Swami Vivekananda 581words

By Swami Bhaskarananda

The word peace has been given a lot of importance by different religions. In Hinduism, it is called Shantih. In Judaism it is call ed Shalom. The word Islam also means peace.

Hindu philosophers call this world a word of pairs of opposites. If you know darkness then you must also know its opposite, which is light. If you know joy then you must know its opposite also, which is sadness. Many years ago, when I was a young monk in India, I talked to the principal of a blind boys’ school run by the Ramakrishna Mission. The principal was born blind, but using the Braille method, he got a Masters’ degree. I asked him, “Do you really know what we call darkness?”

He answered, “I don’t really know what darkness and light are. But theoretically I know that they are opposite of each other, just as hot water is the opposite of cold water.”

Does the word peace belong to a pair of opposites? The answer is: “No!”

To explain, let us suppose that a person has a severe headache. In other words, he is in a state of suffering. Then that person takes a pain killer tablet. After some minutes, his headache is gone. Is he now enjoying? No, he is not. He is neither suffering nor suffering. He is in a state of relief from both. This state if relief is comparable to peace.

We all know that the owner and the object owned by that owner must be different from each other. For example, you own a car, therefore as the owner you are different from that car. Similarly, you own your physical body, physical strength, sense organs and also your mind. So, as the owner, you must be different from all of them. But the problem is that your sense of individual existence is a thought of your conscious mind. That thought is your ego, or I.

We are like so many waves in the ocean of Divinity. As long as we are identified with our minds, we are like waves which are identified with their forms. If we can give up that identification then we know that we are the ocean, the one and only Divinity. That Divinity is Eternity, Infinity and Bliss. That Divinity is called Peace. This is why in different religions the word peace has been given so much importance.

Therefore, let us all strive for Peace, which is what we all really are.


By Swami Vivekananda
Behold, it comes in might,
The power that is not power,
The light that is in darkness,
The shade in dazzling light.

It is joy that never spoke,
And grief unfelt, profound,
Immortal life unlived,
Eternal death unmourned.

It is not joy nor sorrow,
But that which is between,
It is not noght nor morrow,
But that which joins them in.

It is sweet rest in music;
And pause in sacred art;
The silence between speaking;
Between two fits of passion –
It is the calm of heart.

It is beauty never seen,
And love that stands alone,
It is song that lives un-sung,
And knowledge never known.

It is death between two lives,
And lull between two storms,
The void whence rose creation,
And that where it returns.

To it the tear-drop goes,
To spread the smiling form
It is the Goal of Life,
And Peace – its only home!


February 9
7:00 pm - 7:30 pm