Peace according to me can be viewed at three different levels-personal, societal or national and finally at a macro scale i.e international. And though the underlying definition in all three cases is the same, it’s interesting to study each individually.
On a personal level, I think it’s quite safe to assume it’s relative and subjective in nature as also more intimate. What I perceive and comprehend as peace may not be good enough for another. Also how much priority one gives to this abstract sentiment may also vary from person to person. Peace at a personal level is the perceptions we nurture to the challenges and conflicts we encounter in our day to day life and how best we resolve the same. Coping skills play an important role to ensure one’s peace is assured. It’s a learned behavior. I personally seek peace in my work and interpersonal relations, by introspection, doodling, writing my thoughts as also embracing music and breathing exercises so that I can sustain my personal peace.
In the case of societal peace, the role of the policymakers, the judiciary and the mode of policing cannot be undermined. Democratic expression of the masses is to be respected. A sensitive government and moreover transparent governance, ensure societies enjoy peace. Inequality, inequity, injustice can crumble peace and ruin the lives of members of society which again takes a toll. Unity, commitment and a strong sense of accountability ensure there is peace in society. We see very few such societies that enjoy this privilege, by and large, each society has multiple issues be it economical, social, political or environmental to resolve. And yet, all is not lost, there is hope. Much can be learned in terms of best practices from some of the Scandinavian countries.
At an international level, the issues magnify and multiply unleashing unwarranted pain and deaths. World Wars, Cold wars, Trade wars, Cyberwars hold mankind at ransom. In the name of religion, control on resources and power politics see innocent lives sacrificed. The major casualty is women and children who are reduced to pawns. One agitated mind, one flawed policy and one inflated ego in an international arena can ruin and wipe out traces of civilizations, culture, and faith. History is the testimony. We definitely need to learn from past mistakes, surely, our future generations deserve a much better and peaceful life.
It’s time, we as rational human beings pay attention to the fact and redefine our priorities and way of life. Acknowledge the fact that maximum harm is done by our selfish, narcissist approach. I would conclude with the thought of Mahatma Gandhi, “The day the power of love overrules the love of power, the world will know peace.”