My friend Aleem is a skilled and sophisticated communicator. He was the spokesperson for the UN Mission to Afghanistan for many years and is now doing the same work in the Sudan. If he wanted to, Aleem could give us a 30 minute speech on the complex dynamics of peace and conflict.
But today, on the International Day of Peace, he has only one thing to say. He has said it before and – he warns – he is going to keep saying it until he gets a moment’s peace and quiet. Today Aleem says:
‘Stop the killin’ and start the chillin’
I know. It sounds a little bit flippant. Conflict is complex. Violence is complex. Global peace is going to take more than a magic-chill-pill. Right?
It sounds a bit flippant. But I not sure that it is.
Research evidence is beginning to show that mindfulness-based meditation practices can reduce aggressive and violent behaviour.
So ‘chillin’ is not only a conveniently rhymin’ alternative to ‘killin’. It looks more and more likely that it is also part of the antidote. Part of what it is going to take to give Aleem his long-yearned-for moment of global peace and quiet.
Today, on International Peace Day – why not take five minutes and chill.
If you need some inspiration or some help, here’s a five minute guided relaxation (click to stream, control or right click to download to your own computer) that I created for my 30 Days of Yoga for People Too Busy To Do Yoga course.
A five minute guided relaxation is not the same as a regular, daily mindfulness-based meditation practice. But it is a step in the right direction. Which is actually – and this is a big call, but I’m willing to stake my name on it – a step in the direction of world peace.
So peace in, my friend.
And peace out.
Why not do it in the name of the good work Save the Children is doing to promote peace for children around the world?
Twitter hashtag #blogforpeace