A CALL FOR PEACE
Let us pray:
In the name of God the beneficent, the merciful. Praise be to the Lord of the Universe who has created us and made us into tribes and nations That we may know each other, not that we may despise each other. In Quran Surat 8v 61 says- If the enemies incline towards peace, do thou also incline towards peace, and trust God, for the Lord is the one that heareth and knoweth all things. And the servants of God, Most gracious are those who walk on the Earth in humility. Come let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, that we may walk the paths of the Most High. And we shall beat our swords into ploughshares and our spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation—neither shall they learn war any more. And none shall be afraid, for the mouth of the Lord of Hosts has spoken. Be generous in prosperity, and thankful in adversity. Be fair in judgment, and guarded in thy speech, be a lamp unto those who walk in darkness, and a home to the stranger. Be eyes to the blind, and a guiding light unto the feet of the erring be a breath of life to the body of humankind, dew to the soil of the human heart, and a fruit upon the tree of humility. Psalms 85v 10-11 says- Love and fidelity have come together; Justice and peace join hands fidelity springs up from earth and justice looks down from heaven. Lord have on mercy on us, for we have placed our hope in you ,God, Do not be very angry with us, nor remember our transgression but look upon us even now with mercy and deliver us from our enemies. We are all work of your hand and we call upon your name. Peace, Shalom, Salaam
Before we can understand what this means, we need to consider the concept of peace. First, it is important to understand that this strong appeal that has nothing to do with the world's idea of peace. Peace for the world is simply the act of ceasing of hostilities. It means that no one is throwing punches, or hot lead, or bombs. Although this is certainly an important aspect of peace, it is much less and very much different from the peace. Most of us are willing to define peace as the absence of war. The absence of war is good, real good, but peace is much more than that. Peace is not the mere absence of war; it is the establishment of wholeness in our lives, our communities, and the world.
To consider the supreme importance of the task now challenging the entire world, we bow our heads in humility before the awesome majesty of the divine Creator, Who out of His infinite love has created all humanity from the gem-like reality of man. Honored by with intellect and wisdom, nobility and immortality; and bestowed upon man the unique distinction and capacity to know Him and to love Him. A large capacity that must needs be regarded as the generating impulse and the primary purpose underlying the whole of creation.
We hold firmly the conviction that all human beings have been created to carry forward an ever-advancing civilization; that to act like the beasts of the field is unworthy of man; that the virtues that befit human dignity are trustworthiness, mercy, compassion and loving-kindness towards all peoples. We understand and acknowledge the belief that the potential inherent in the station of man, the full measure of his destiny on earth, having an essential characteristic of excellence of his reality, must all be manifested in this promised Day of God. These are the motivations for our unshakeable faith that unity and peace are the attainable goal towards which the human race is striving.
The Great Peace towards which people of good will throughout the centuries have inclined their hearts, of which visionaries and poets for countless generations have expressed their sights. The sacred scriptures of mankind have constantly held the promise, is now at long last within the reach of the nations. For the first time in history it is possible for everyone to view the entire world, with all its diversified peoples, in one perspective. World peace is not only possible but inevitable. It is the next stage in the evolution of our world.
Forgiveness is more for the forgiver, than the forgiven. In the act of forgiving another, we free ourselves from the debilitating effects of chronic anger and resentment. Forgive, not because the person who has hurt you deserves to be forgiven. Maybe he does and maybe he doesn't? But that is not the issue! The person who has hurt you does not deserve to keep the scar open and the right to continue to cause you pain.
If we want peace in the world it has to begin with each of us. If we want peace we have to be peaceful. When we accept in our hearts that God loves us, our self-worth and esteem cannot be determined by what other’s think of our appearance or performance. When we accept in our hearts that we are children of God, our search for meaning is over, our mission to love God and neighbor is clear. That is the peace that we can find in following God that the world can never take away. Knowing who we are and knowing that we are loved is contagious. The world worships power, profit and privilege, and the innocent and the Earth suffer as a result. We worship love and compassion as the most active signs of God’s presence in our midst. If that is the case then world peace begins in our homes.
We must make a conscious effort to reach out to each other. Reach out to other ethnic groups. Reach out to that person you haven’t talked to in years. Reach out to God’s people. Make this the year for getting to know people. We need to realize how human we all are. Every person must make a commitment to God that in this coming year you will invite three people that has never been to your house over for a visit. Feed them and talk to them and find out how human people really are. This is the year that every person must make a commitment to God to reach out to a family member with whom there is strained relations. You have to sincerely try to change yourself for God to improve your relationship.
Partner up with a “study buddy”: Every husband and wife must spend time with each other every week working on their faith towards God. This simply means working together not one being a critical teacher of the other, but both working together with love and mercy to better understand their faith in God and serve Him as well. If we as parents take our faith seriously on there own we will be able to transition to a family faith time. Kids need to see that we are sincere that it is important before we will take them seriously.
Let us break the physical barriers in our communities. If there are several Churches, Synagogues and Masjids (Mosques) in our communities, make a committed effort to alternate between them even if you don’t like what the other congregation is doing. Reach out to people as friends and brothers in God and faith.
Find it in your heart to love again, to love people again and learn to love the Truth to learn to love is to speak the truth and learn to love is to live the Truth. Every Jew, Christian and Muslim should be a fanatic about learning and improving themselves and their knowledge. No one is perfect and in the end it will be your soul on Judgment Day… Are you going to trust your soul to the blind obedience of some Minister, Rabbi or Imam or some human beings? I can’t save you or deliver you. So take responsibility for yourself and empower yourself with knowledge and follow the divinity of logic of God to the goodness of His scriptures. God promises us that any person that turns to Him with humility shall be elevated, purified and in the end shall regain his or her human dignity. Humanity's greatest strength is that despite much that goes wrong in the world, the glimmers of hope lies in your action and not in-action.
Lead us from the unreal to the Real. Lead us from darkness to light. Lead us from death to immortality. Peace, Peace, Peace unto all. May there be peace in celestial regions. May there be peace on Earth. May all beneficent beings bring peace to us. May all things be a source of peace to us. And may thy peace itself, bestow peace on all and may that peace come to me as well. As I came to you with peace, I leave here with peace. Peace, Shalom, Salaam.