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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Friday, May 6, 2011

Stillness

In the early morning, I sit in my quiet room and listen to the stillness. Through the window, the trees appear at rest and no breeze blows to disturb their lassitude. All is calm and appears peaceful. I love this moment.

I think of the words of the Christmas Carol, now nearly 200 years old.

Silent night, holy night,
All is calm, all is bright.

I think of the famous Christmas Truce of 1914, and imagine British, German and French soldiers climbing cautiously from their trenches and singing that song together, each in their own language. It was one of the few songs and themes they each knew and held in common.

It is tempting to sit in this quiet moment and claim to be at peace. Stillness is not the same as peace, however. Listening more closely I can hear birds already singing their morning calls, perhaps celebrating having already caught the worm. For the bird to enjoy this life giving nourishment, the worm must die. Violence and death is masked by the stillness. Stillness is a tempting and seductive illusion of peace.

The respite of the 1914 Christmas truce was not true peace and the horror of that awful, bloody conflict would continue for four more soul-scarring years. In the spring of 2011, we also cannot claim to be at peace with Canadian soldiers involved in two theatres of war. Stillness is an illusion; lovely, but not to be mistaken for true peace.

Our friend and brother, Rod Downing, works and writes for peace under the rubric, Until All Achieve Well-Being. His work is a quiet reminder to each of us of our privilege in the midst of others' suffering.

I linger in the stillness.
I love it here and long to remain.
Alas, I am called to work for peace.

Posted by Carman

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