The Secret That Peaceful People Know

In my life before I found my spiritual path, I could spin up a drama better than anyone else. Before you could blink an eye, I could turn a mole hill into a mountain with the stories I told and the emotions I let rise like a torrential rainstorm within me. I would perceive a nuance, attribute negative meaning to it, get myself worked up over that assessment, and then the tale would take on a life of its own. Pretty soon I would feel completely righteous about furiously firing off an email, certain I was educating the other person about fairness and where they went wrong.

As a matter of fact, anything I perceived as not ‘fair’ easily became the fodder for my frustration and angst. I would often turn these personal fits into campaigns by telling anyone who would listen about the injustice and pressing them to have a comparable level of disbelief and disgust as I did. I simply could not understand anyone who didn’t share my disdain for the circumstances; how could they be so cold-hearted? How could they go on living while these completely unfair things were happening right in front of them? How could we let people get away with that?

Oftentimes when I was in the middle of these rants, there would be someone in my midst who remained calm and exuded a quiet knowing. I remember noticing that it felt like an ocean of peace surrounded these people. They were unperturbed by my passionate argument. They simply observed me. I didn’t feel the onset of shame that typically came from someone judging me; I simply felt like they were listening without buying into my story. They had questions in their eyes.

Something about the peaceful feeling combined with the curious eyes was unsettling for me. It made me aware that they knew something I didn’t. That they were tapped into something that I wasn’t…something that allowed them to stay calm in the middle of the storm. It was almost like they were living in a completely different world from the one I was suffering in; and their world felt a whole lot better. I really, deeply, wanted that for myself. I sat across from a psychotherapist for decades trying to learn how to become like that…a person who feels like an ocean of peace. What was their secret?

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Republished from MY Authentic Life Magazine