“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”
― Mother Teresa, founder of the Order of the Sisters of Charity.
“If you want peace, you don’t talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.”
― Desmond Tutu, South African social rights activist and retired Anglican bishop
“You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.”
― Indira Gandhi, the first female Prime Minister of India”
Peace asks us to see, hear, and feel, what is common between us. The veins that give us life. Our general form and texture. Our most primal cares and concerns. Our origin stories are born from the same tree of life.
And as we pass from this season and return to the womb of Mother Earth our differences become difficult to distinguish. Since we are destined to become one eventually, maybe peace is asking us to become one in our hearts now. Not to see each other the same or be the same, but to see in each other what truly is the same.
Peace asks: How can we experience the heart of those we disagree with and feel threatened by if we don’t engage in curiosity with them?
Below are three remarkable people who have and continue to do this:
Monica Guzman, senior fellow at Braver Angels, was interviewed recently by Julie Rose as part of her Stick With It Stories podcast. Some simple but critical ways that can help us talk to, and be in healthy relationship with, our political opposites—especially when they are family and neighbors.
Finally, Daryl Davis, is a hero of mine who I was finally able to meet at the 2023 Faith Matters Restore Gathering. I’ve highlighted him in past years but he cannot be shared enough. Daryl demonstrates repeatedly how the best way to reduce the very real threat of a Klu Klux Clan enemy is to make them your friend. You can find his talk—and all the other talks from this last Restore Gathering—here. (If it is not there yet it soon will be.) You can also can find him on TED.org and Joe Rogan. He was also interviewed this year on C-Span about how to combat racism in the U.S.