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Inner peace: Variations on a theme

The Tidings, with the help of local writers and members of the faith community, is offering a new Saturday column about Inner Peace: What is it; how and when do we experience it; where does one start and what works?

There are probably as many definitions of inner peace as there are those of us seeking it. However, this is where we can learn from one another; know ourselves better and explore our potential in a shared reality.

In opening our minds and hearts this is therefore a judgment free zone. From the beginning we have judged each other's spiritual paths, cultures, habits and practices. Think of all the terrible wars, past and current that are being fought over "our judgments" about religion, ideas or beliefs. We have separated ourselves into a myriad of compartments, agreeing or disagreeing until we have come to blows. When we STOP the judgments about the forms and share the content of our hearts, we recognize the beautiful sameness inherent in exploring spirit and the great mystery of life. Inner peace is all-encompassing is it not?

If you have found a path to inner peace, you are invited to share it so others may benefit from what has worked for you. Some suggestions: How did you begin; what has helped or changed in your life; what methods or practices work best and in what ways have you and/or others benefited? What have you experienced, i.e. forgivenesses, reconciliations, gratefulness, understanding, compassion, a change of heart or mind thereby releasing both the past and the future? Have you overcome fears, judgments; have grievances been resolved with contentment finally achieved? What books, authors or programs of study have been the most beneficial to you?

A Course In Miracles states, "A universal theology is impossible, but a universal experience is not only possible but necessary." Let us share our experiences of inner peace, in a spirit of all-inclusiveness of all Spiritual Practices: Animism, Atheists, Deists, Baha'i, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Judaism, Nature Lover, Hinduism, Islam, Native American; Sufi; Sikhism, Theosophists; Taoism, Unitarian, Yogi's, Wicca, and all versions thereof including clergy, non-clergy, believers, non-believers and seekers of all ages. In this column we are equal as teachers and learners as we hold the light for each other. Send your submission (or questions) to: innerpeace@q.com The maximum number of words for the column is 500 and that is including your name and a short bio about yourself. Indicate if your e-mail is to be included in the article. Advise us of your phone number, in case we have questions. It will not be printed in the article unless you give your permission.

We hope to hear from you in this joining of knowledge in a spirit of willingness as we share our great diversity, culminating in healing ourselves and our community.

Ashlander, Sally McKirgan, is an artist, poet and a long time student of A Course In Miracles.