The Dalai Lama often describes an encounter with a Tibetan monk named Lopon Tenzin Namdak Rinpoche that had a profound impact on him. Lopon was imprisoned and tortured by the Chinese for 18 years. In the book, The Wisdom of Forgiveness: Intimate Conversations and Journeys by the Dalai Lama and Victor Chan, the Dalai Lama speaks about his conversation with Lopon-la. “I asked him if he was afraid. Lopon-la then told me: ‘Yes, there was one thing I was afraid of. I was afraid I would lose compassion for the Chinese.'”
This is the epitome of forgiveness. How difficult to keep this mindset after such a long time facing this extremely difficult trial. Later in this section of the book, the Dalai Lama describes how Lopon was able accept the situation he was experiencing, retain a peaceful mindset, and repel feelings of hatred for the Chinese.
As it is demonstrated in this example, peace is not a phenomenon that can simply occur in our lives and in our world. We must think and work to create these peaceful feelings within ourselves.
I stumbled upon an article that nicely summarizes the concept of inner peace, and helps readers move toward achieving this. Check out, “Finding Inner Peace” by Jane Alexander on the website SoulfulLiving.com if you are interested in learning more.
Similar to the process of achieving inner peace, outer peace also requires action. The Create Peace Project is an example of a program to help the next generation understand and embrace peace. Create Peace Project teaches youth about the actions necessary for creating unified communities and a peaceful world “by educating, empowering, and activating joyous feelings of self-worth using the universal language of self-expression.” (“Our Story” Createpeaceproject.org).