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Peace

  • My own recipe for world peace is a bit of land for everyone.

  • What would happen if all the populations on the planet simply refused to fight human beings they did not even know?

  • Ultimately, we have just one moral duty: to reclaim large areas of peace in ourselves, more and more peace, and to reflect it towards others. And the more peace there is in us, the more peace there will also be in our troubled world.

  • In practice, there is nothing especially dramatic in people getting along well together.

  • You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.

  • Without peace there can be no prosperity for any people, rich or poor. And yet, there can be no peace without erasing the harshness of the growing contrast between the rich and the poor.

  • We have thought of peace as a letting go and war as a girding up. We have thought of peace as the passive and war as the active way of living. The opposite is true. War is not the most strenuous life. It is a kind of rest-cure compared to the task of reconciling our differences.

  • It seems to me that the only thing for a pacifist to do is to find a substitute for war: mountains and seafaring are the only ones I know. But it must be something sufficiently serious not to be a game and sufficiently dangerous to exercise those virtues which otherwise get no chance.

  • ... every frontier is doomed to produce an opposition beyond it. Nothing short of the universal can build the unfenced peace.

  • Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war.

  • My attitude toward peace does not depend on which war we are discussing. I think that words should do the work of bombs.

  • Peace is hard work and we must not allow people to forget it.

  • World peace will never come until the passion of supremacy is combated.

  • There's never been a lack of men willing to die bravely. The trouble is to find a few able to live sensibly.

  • ... I kept praying that I might be able to prevent a repetition of this stupidity called war. I have tried to keep the promise I made to myself, but the progress that the world is making toward peace seems like the crawling of a little child, very halting and slow.

  • We have to face the fact that either all of us are going to die together or we are going to learn to live together and if we are to live together we have to talk.

  • This I know. This I believe with all my heart. If we want a free and a peaceful world, if we want to make the deserts bloom and man grow to greater dignity as a human being — we can do it!

  • ... it isn't enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn't enough to believe in it. One must work at it.

    • Eleanor Roosevelt,
    • radio broadcast (1951), in Joseph P. Lash, Eleanor: The Years Alone ()
  • ... the insight that peace is the end of war, and that therefore a war is the preparation for peace, is at least as old as Aristotle, and the pretense that the aim of an armament race is to guard the peace is even older, namely as old as the discovery of propaganda lies.

  • ... I sincerely want peace, not because I lack resources for war, but because I hate bloodshed.

    • Catherine the Great,
    • 1770, in A. Lentin, ed., Voltaire and Catherine the Great: Selected Correspondence ()
  • It has perhaps always been the case that the waging of peace is the hardest form of leadership of all.

  • They have not wanted Peace at all; they have wanted to be spared war — as though the absence of war was the same as peace.

  • ... to the true servant of God every place is the right place and every time is the right time.

    • Catherine of Siena,
    • 1378, in Vida D. Scudder, ed., St. Catherine of Siena As Seen in Her Letters ()
  • Peace is not a passive but an active condition, not a negation but an affirmation. It is a gesture as strong as war.

  • Life appears to me too short to be spent in nursing animosity, or registering wrongs. With this creed, revenge never worries my heart, degradation never too deeply disgusts me, injustice never crushes me too low. I live in calm, looking to the end.

  • ... when the people of any country choose peace at all costs, not even generals can make war.

  • If ever peace is to be imposed on the world it will only be because a large number of men who could have taken part in the drill display by the Guards or Marines or at the Royal Tournament turn that strength and precision to the service of life.

  • By its existence, the Peace Movement denies that governments know best; it stands for a different order of priorities: the human race comes first.

  • The quietly pacifist peaceful / always die / to make room for men / who shout.

    • Alice Walker,
    • "The QPP," Revolutionary Petunias and Other Poems ()
  • That's what I want to be when I grow up, just a peaceful wreck holding hands with other peaceful wrecks ...

    • Tillie Olsen,
    • "Hey Sailor, What Ship?" Tell Me a Riddle ()
  • Peace is not won by those who fiercely guard their differences but by those who with open minds and hearts seek out connections.

  • Peace is not a phenomenon of nature; it is a human concept. And it is not mere tranquility. I would suggest that the concept of peace has at least three elements. There can be no wholeness, no peace, where freedom is denied; true peace guarantees persons the freedom to grow — physically, intellectually, imaginatively, and spiritually. The second necessary element of peace is harmony — a harmony that is not the absence of conflicting themes or the elimination of differences, but the absolute incorporation of the voice of each individual into the whole. And as Martin Luther King, Jr., has said, peace is not simply the absence of conflict, but the presence of justice.

  • It seems to me that there are two great enemies of peace — fear and selfishness.

  • Rocked in the cradle of the deep, / I lay me down in peace to sleep.

  • In individuals as in nations, contentment is silent, which tends to unbalance the historical record.

  • Peace is the wait of the patient soul.

  • Everything which is of strife makes the vision of the truth more difficult; everything which tends to controversy makes the grasping of the truth harder. The spirit of man should be like a lake unruffled by wind or storm. Under such conditions a lake will reflect perfectly the mountains which are around it and the sky above it. With an unruffled surface it will give a perfect reflection of these. If the wind sweeps over it or the storm ruffles it, its reflections are disturbed; they are not clear. The images will be seen, but not clearly. And so it is with the division of light and the human spirit. If the spirit is ruffled, then the Divine Image cannot mirror itself thereon.

  • There are only two forces that can withstand the force of the war's spirit when it seizes upon the world. The one is the force of an independently thinking, free, and articulate democracy. The other is the force of an instructed and enlightened public opinion.

  • The first step in the direction of a world rule of law is the recognition that peace no longer is an unobtainable ideal but a necessary condition of continued human existence.

  • ... war often breaks out when there is the most talk of peace.

    • Madame de Sévigné,
    • 1673, Letters of Madame de Sévigné to Her Daughter and Her Friends, vol. 2 ()
  • Yet there are some resting-places, / Life's untroubled interludes; / Times when neither past nor future / On the soul's deep calm intrudes.

    • Jean Ingelow,
    • "Family Pictures," Poems by Jean Ingelow ()
  • Let me not fuss and fret at my incompetence but be still and know that Thou art God.

  • One grows strangely apprehensive / When one comtemplates the sense of / peace offensive, / Which, aggressively commanding / That which passeth understanding / Turns the sentiment it rouses / To: 'A pax on both your houses.'

  • Stay quiet; refuse nothing; flowers grow only because they tranquilly allow the sun's rays to reach them. You must do the same.

    • Juliana Krüdener,
    • in J. Christopher Herold, Mistress to an Age: A Life of Madame de Staël ()
  • Real peace is more than the absence of war; it is an absence of the causes of war.

  • The price of peace is to abandon greed and replace it with giving, so that none will be spiritually injured by having more than they need while others in the world still have less than they need.

  • We seem always ready to pay the price for war. Almost gladly we give our time and our treasure — our limbs and even our lives — for war. But we expect to get peace for nothing.

  • Few find inner peace but this is not because they try and fail, it is because they do not try.

  • We need a Peace Department in our national government to do extensive research on peaceful ways of resolving conflicts. Then we can ask other countries to create similar departments.

  • One little person, giving all of her time to peace, makes news. Many people, giving some of their time, can make history.

  • Peace the great meaning has not been defined. / When we say peace as a word, war / As a flare of fire leaps across our eyes.

  • Let nothing disturb thee; / Let nothing dismay thee: / All things pass; / God never changes. / Patience attains / All that it strives for. / He who has God / Finds he lacks nothing: / God alone suffices.

    • Teresa of Avila,
    • c. 1550, in E. Allison Peers, tr., The Complete Works of St. Teresa of Jesus ()
  • ... peace is achieved one person at a time, through a series of friendships.

  • Acquire inner peace and a multitude will find their salvation near you.

  • The only alternative to war is peace and the only road to peace is negotiations.

    • Golda Meir,
    • in Claire Price-Groff, Twentieth Century Women Political Leaders ()
  • ... that perfect tranquility of life, which is nowhere to be found but in retreat, a faithful friend, a good library ...

  • Just as a pool of water cannot reflect the sky overhead when it is restless and disturbed, so we can never get a perfect vision of the Divine, and show it to others when we are disturbed with human thoughts and personal problems. It is only when we are quite still and receptive that God can think His thoughts into us and use us for His purposes.

  • Love is not a doctrine. Peace is not an international agreement. Love and Peace are beings who live as possibilities in us.

  • Like water which can clearly mirror the sky and the trees only so long as its surface is undisturbed, the mind can only reflect the true image of the Self when it is tranquil and wholly relaxed.

    • Indra Devi,
    • Renewing Your Life Through Yoga
    • ()
  • As calm as innocence.

  • ... once your eyes get opened to pacifism, you can't shut them again. Once you see it, you can't unsee it. You may bitterly regret the fact that you happen to be one of the tiny minority of the human race who have caught this angle of vision, but you can't help it.

  • ... any peace movement must have behind it a higher passion than the desire for war.

  • Storehouses filled with merchandise will prove a better guarantee than arsenals bulging with ammunition.

  • There can be no real peace without justice. And without resistance there will be no justice.

  • Do not hurry too fast in these early winter days, — a quiet hour is worth more to you than anything you can do in it.

  • The struggle to maintain peace is immeasurably more difficult than any military operation.

  • Few situations — no matter how greatly they appear to demand it — can be bettered by us going beserk.

  • This moment, we are right where we need to be, right where we are meant to be.

  • By the time we got to Woodstock / We were half a million strong, / And everywhere was song and celebration, / And I dreamed I saw the bombers / Riding shotgun in the sky, / Turning into butterflies / Above our nation.

  • I am weary of swords and courts and kings. Let us go into the garden and watch the minister's bees.

  • ... I don't believe there's more than one human man or woman in a thousand who can think internationally, and until the majority can I don't see any hope of lasting peace.

  • Arise then, women of this day! Arise, all women who have hearts, whether your baptism be that of water or of tears! Say firmly, 'We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking of carnage, for caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience. We women of one country will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.' From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own, it says, 'Disarm! Disarm!'

  • Peace is when time doesn't matter as it passes by.

  • ... the suppression of war is not the equivalent of peace.

  • It takes more than one person to bring about peace — it takes all of us.

  • Who loves the rain / And loves his home, / And looks on life with quiet eyes ...

    • Frances Shaw,
    • "Who Loves the Rain," in Harriet Monroe and Alice Corbin Henderson, eds., The New Poetry: An Anthology ()
  • Strike against war, for without you no battles can be fought! Strike against manufacturing shrapnel and gas bombs and all other tools of murder! Strike against preparedness that means death and misery to millions of human beings! Be not dumb, obedient slaves in an army of destruction! Be heroes in an army of construction!

  • Everyone speaks of peace; no one knows what peace is. We know at best a poisoned peace. No one has lived on an earth without weapons, without war and the threat of war on a large and small scale.

  • ... all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.

  • Once allow your soul to be disturbed by any violent emotion and, like the waters of a tempest-tossed lake, it can no longer reflect the divine Image.

  • I believe America will always win the war. It's a superpower that no one can challenge. The real challenge is for the United States to win the peace.

  • Without peace of mind, life is just a shadow of its possibilities.

  • It's odd how those who dismiss the peace movement as utopian don't hesitate to proffer the most absurdly dreamy reasons for going to war: to stamp out terrorism, install democracy, eliminate fascism, and most entertainingly, to 'rid the world of evil-doers.'

  • Take away the landmines. / All we want is to ban mines.