Thich Nat Hanh is a Buddhist monk who was nominated by Martin Luther King, Jr, for the Nobel Peace Prize for his work during the American war in Viet Nam. He continues his global work to this day.
I recall him telling a story once in which a protester had brought a sign for peace to a demonstration. Things got out of hand and before you know it the protester was hitting people with his sign. Thich Nat Hanh used this anecdote as a reminder that to work for peace is to bring peace, not conflict. It was a humorous story, but so relevant today.
Whatever we are working for, are we able to be it? If unity is what believe in, can we live unity? Do we have eyes of equanimity to see through conflict and locate the path that yields peaceful resolution? Do we have the inner resources to choose composure when faced with chaos? These are tall orders to be sure. They point us back to the work we have to do within that will build our capacity to do the same work out in the world.
What is most important to you? Where are your deepest values? How do you source them? How do you get back on track when you go off the rails? We all go off the rails. It’s human nature.
As someone who works in the area of change leadership, I can tell you that logjams, bottlenecks, and obstacles are part of every path to success. So, it becomes really important what we do when faced with these trials. Will we be proud to recount our behavior to our children and grandchildren, to our mother and father? How do we build the capacity to reach our highest ideals?
“Goodness is about character – integrity, honesty, kindness, generosity, moral courage, and the like. More than anything else, it is about how we treat other people.”
– Dennis Prager