When we think of a gift, we think of something that’s potentially good and exciting. Once we experience it, it tends to fade with time. So, what is this "priceless gift" that can't be bought, sold or taken by anyone on this planet but is desired by everyone? The foolish and greedy may call it gold, diamonds or power but these can be acquired by those who have the means.
Teenagers full of passion and desire may claim a new car or a boyfriend or girlfriend but these come and go like the changing tides of the sea. Young married couples may suggest that owning a home with a picket fence may be the perfect prize. But, like everything else in the land of matter, those who are fortunate with regard to money are able to enjoy this pleasure while many never get the opportunity. Even for those people who are fortunate enough to purchase a home, they quickly realize it takes a lot of money, time and effort to keep it up and that it’s not the source of lasting happiness they thought it would be.
Many during this technological age would probably call a new smartphone a significant gift to oneself but these quickly lose their luster and interest with the next new version that roles out from year to year. Sadly, in the near future, some may call water the priceless gift as supplies dwindle in certain parts of the world. But, this is not the gift sought by all as some parts of the world have large supplies available and some people don’t give it a second thought just as the air we breathe. Some may call it health, but this can be had by many that have the means and desire to cultivate good healthy habits. Health is very good, but many are never taught the correct habits of a healthy life. Also, there are many others who never have the chance to be healthy due to chronic health problems from birth or due to accidents or other unfortunate events. Others may call it success. But, as we know, success can be had and lost in today's fast moving tumultuous world as there are no guarantees about tomorrow.
There are those who would call it true friendship. Even though this is a one of the greatest gifts we can have in life and is available to everyone, it’s still elusive for so many people as they don’t know about unconditional love and acceptance. Without those two mains ingredients, lasting friendship is difficult at best. Some would label it happiness. This is another noble thought and right of all citizens but so many have misunderstood what real happiness is. So many are taught from a young age that happiness is something to be had, earned, acquired or even taken. The problem is that when someone gets what they want, its luster fades quickly and they want the next best thing as soon as possible so they can be “so called” happy again. With this type of belief system, it’s like living on a roller coaster of highs and lows, which eventually leads to frustration and sorrow. It’s no different than the addict looking for his or her next fix or trying to catch the fleeting rays of the sun in a bottle. True love is another royal gem that is sought after by all but sadly, is enjoyed by only a few. Throughout history, people have searched for true love and many have fallen against the rocks of despair while searching hither and yonder to find it.
After reviewing many of these ‘ideas, beliefs & concepts’ we can begin to see that everything in this known world of nature comes and goes along with time. Nothing is fixed or solid in this world of change as it only appears so. Nature is full of such examples from the budding trees and blooms of spring flowers brimming with new life only to shed them just before the cold months of winter. Another example would be the great variety of insects that begin life anew each year only to fade and die during their short cycle of life. Upon more reflection, we can see that nothing really stands still long enough to be captured or held tightly as it’s always in motion, changing just as our physical appearance does with the passage of time. The more we race around looking and seeking in this hectic world of matter, the less we find of this most perfect substance that transcends all things and conditions of life. So, what is this most sought after and priceless gift that can't be bought, sold, bartered, conquered or possessed by any outward means?
It’s none other than Peace. Peace is the equivalent of "The golden ticket" in the movie classic "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory". Every child wanted the ticket but very few were fortunate enough to find one. In reality, peace is far more precious than any golden ticket, house, car, job, position, spouse, money, gold, etc. One can become rich and have many material things in life but without peace, they quickly become dull and fade into discontentment. Also, without inner peace, long term happiness is not possible. How many times have we read about someone on the internet or television that seemed to have everything money could buy but ended up going rogue, losing everything and/or destroying themselves or those they supposedly loved? Material abundance doesn't equate to peace. A PhD can’t guarantee peace any more than a job, spouse or things acquired.
The simple truth is, the only thing in this world that can give lasting peace is being rightly centered in Spirit and living in harmony in thought, word and action. Spirit, God, Allah, El Shaddai or whatever name you prefer to call our loving Creator, is the one true source of endless peace and joy. The old adage "Don't build your house on sand" is valid and based on wisdom. Everything in this material world is in a constant state of flux and ever changing whereas God is always constant in His way of peace.
The great master Jesus spoke about this in the bible and many other great saints and masters from around the world have also spoke of this eternal truth. The infinite well of peace is within all souls and waiting to be tapped by daily prayer, silence, meditation and devotion. From this peace comes the thirst quenching power of joy, which is also eternal.
Unfortunately, learning about and tapping our well of daily peace and joy is not taught in most families, schools or the business world. Things of the world tend to teach chaos and constant commotion, which is the opposite of peace. Most go throughout life trying as they may to get as many material things as possible with peace nowhere to be found. Or, like the squirrel who runs around frantically finding and burying nuts before the winter arrives only to realize he can’t remember where he buried most of the nuts. Where is peace in a life like this? The road of life is difficult enough but without peace of mind, which comes from right living, being morally centered and having compassion for others, it can be an outright nightmare. Looking at the current state of world affairs, it’s easy to see that global peace is lacking and is sorely needed. It's sad that so many go throughout life without this most precious substance that is equally available to all.
Since Spirit is the infinite ocean of peace and we its children are its divine heirs, all we need to do is get quiet and sincerely ask our heavenly mother & father for help each day. If need be, numerous times throughout the day until we start to feel this truth and happiness percolate from deep within our heart and soul.
Once we get in touch with our inner peace and try our best to walk in its path, happiness will fill our hearts and we will know what Jesus meant when he said "Peace Be Still and Know I AM". Then, once we know peace, we too can become humble servants to carry His peace filled water to all who are thirsty. We will be known as “Peace Makers”.
About Steven Boyd: Steven is a yogi and writer. He has been practicing yoga and meditation daily for over 30 years. He follows the spiritual path of Self Realization Fellowship that was founded by the great Yogi-Guru Paramahansa Yogananda in 1920.