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Looking for peace in a busy world?

JoAnn and I will be moving to Denver fairly soon, partly to downsize, and partly to be closer to her family. We have enjoyed the last eight years in a small Colorado town called Loveland, but a “nudge” within says this is what we need to do.

I’ve been thinking about this business of movement, external movement. Humans spend quite a bit energy and time moving from here to there on the surface of the planet. There is the morning commute, for instance. There is our love of travel.

But while most of us will be on the move one way or another in the months to come, the truth of who I am and the truth of who you are won’t be going anywhere.

Truth is a beautiful word that for me describes true character, the divine dimension within us all.

Truth is the silent presence from whence comes strength and courage and wisdom. It’s the reason you and I are alive in human form, in position to make a difference in this world. It’s the cause of all that exists, but is forever untouched and untroubled and unchanged by the turmoil of human existence.

Most of all, truth is a comforter, just as the Bible says — the only true comforter in the entire world. As I think of the busy schedule that lies ahead for JoAnn and me I am very thankful for this timeless presence that is going nowhere.

Storms and troubles and catastrophes of all kinds may erupt in our lives, but truth is unmoved by any of it.

How can we know this truth? How can we be at peace even in difficult, or hectic times? What price does truth ask to bless us? It asks that we be willing to let go of our busy thoughts and preoccupations for a moment and be still. Immediately, there is space for the comforter to make itself known.

Putting all this another way, truth is what remains when I lose my preoccupation and fascination with my own personal life story — the notion, for example, that in three or four months time I will be moving from Loveland to Denver.

As Gangaji puts it in her great book, A Diamond in your Pocket: “Telling the personal story is the primary religion of most people on the planet. The personal story gets located in a body, a tribe, a nation, a religion, an ‘us.’ This is why the planet is constantly at war, and why you may be constantly at war with yourself. If you can recognize what your story is, then the story is conscious rather than unconscious. You can see what the story is, and you can choose to stop following it as if it were reality.

“The possibility is to recognize that all our stories, however complex and multilayered, however deeply implanted in our genetic structure, our only stories. The truth of who you are is not a story. The vastness and the closeness of that truth precedes all stories.”


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