Today’s reality gives us little reason for peace of mind. Uncertainty prevails everywhere, and the future is bleak. It seems like the best idea would be to find a little cabin in the boondocks of the Australian backcountry or the Canadian far north with a few farm animals and forget about the world. What a shame that most of us can’t do this, though.
Here in Israel, we think that if we didn’t have to fight against our neighbors, everything would be just fine. In truth, however, it would be far, far worse! We, Jews, would consume one another. If anything, it seems as though we were given enemies from above in order to prevent us from annihilating one another. The more we hate each other, the more they hate us, which in turn prevents us from destroying one another.
This is clearly unsustainable. The only way to find peace of mind in today’s world is to annihilate the hatred among us. Mutual hatred is destroying us, destroying our relationships, destroying our planet, and destroying our future. Just as we are currently teaching ourselves to compete against others as hard as we can and strive to reach the top of the heap, we must teach ourselves to be caring, considerate, and kind.
It is okay that we are not really like that; it is only the beginning. But if we don’t begin to cultivate concern, we will never achieve it. Instead, we will continue to fight and destroy one another until we destroy humanity. On the other hand, if we begin to work on kindness, consideration, and caring, we will learn how to nurture these qualities within us. In the process, we will change all of humanity not only in our generation, but for posterity, as well. We’ve never had a generation whose members were genuinely kind to one another. If we create the precedent, it will be that much easier to maintain that pro-social attitude since we will witness its benefits.
We think that we are separate beings, but we are not. In truth, we are all connected and influence each other whether or not we realize it. If we infuse humanity with ill-will, we will hurt ourselves, as well, even if we do it in order to protect ourselves from others. Conversely, if we infuse the system with kindness, kindness will spread through the system and return to us. And if we all do this toward each other, we will bid farewell to problems.
The key to finding peace of mind is not to run away from society, but to improve it so that everyone concentrates on giving others peace of mind. Only in this way, through a system of mutual responsibility, we will find lasting, solid, and joyful peace of mind in life, now and in the future.