Peace: It Will Come


This past week at Friends Academy was Peace Week, but what exactly is peace and what does peace really mean?

The dictionary definition of peace is “freedom from disturbance.” However, in the world that we live in, it seems disturbance is at every turn. New technologies connect us with the world in so many different ways. This gift of connection is also a burden of knowing that many places in the world are struggling to find any sort of freedom.

We celebrate Peace Week the week of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist and leader. He also was an activist for peace and nonviolent protests.

For the weekend of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I had the pleasure of going down to Washington D.C. and seeing all that the capital had to offer. While most of the museums were closed, I got to see lots of the memorials. I stood next to the statue of Lincoln and stared off across the reflecting pool on top of his memorial. I walked through both the World War II and Vietnam Memorials and thought about how all those men and women lost their lives fighting for peace.

I also got to visit the Holocaust Museum, and it was one of the most touching and intense experiences of my life. If peace is “freedom from disturbance,” then the Holocaust is the opposite of peace. I remember walking through the train cart and just stopping. Despite being surrounded by others in the museum, it just felt so dark and I felt so alone. I couldn’t possibly imagine how anybody could remain hopeful for peace in this situation. But yet, they persevered and peace finally came.

My experiences at the Holocaust museum stayed in my mind throughout Peace Week. At the end of the museum, there was a section on the Syrian crisis. It was about how a group of cellmates all wrote their names on a piece of fabric with rust and blood so if one of them escaped they could inform their families of their situation. It got me thinking about the meaning of peace. The question that keeps popping up in my mind is, “will the world ever truly be at peace?”

Right now, somewhere in the world, someone is suffering and living without peace in their lives. This Peace Week, I discovered that the world will never truly be “free from disturbance.” I do not think it is possible for a world in this day and age to even know the feeling of being “free from disturbance.” But I think there will be a point in time where the world will be at peace, because I learned that peace is not just “freedom from disturbance.”

Peace does not come quickly. Peace takes time. Peace takes perseverance, and peace takes hope. Peace is holding a candle in the darkest night and refusing to let it burn out. Peace is people coming together to stop hatred and ignorance from clouding the minds of those around them. Peace is standing up for your opinions, while respecting the ones around you.

Peace is not easy. One can not do it on his or her own. Peace starts by one person laying down the first brick, followed by another and another. Peace is people everywhere joining in, helping build this tower protecting everyone from corruption and darkness.

Peace is you and peace is me. Peace is in your heart and in your soul. Peace is in every heartbeat and every ounce of love you give out. In the end, when we learn to love each other equally, we’ll be at peace. Peace is obtainable. You just have to be willing to give a hand.