There is a peace…

Jim Finley speaks of ‘a peace that can be found that does not depend on the conditions of peace.’ It is an interior condition which doesn’t require external circumstances to look like anything.

When we are searching for peace or interior freedom it is often relatively easy to find the source of our disquiet. Happily located outside of ourselves. And I am tempted to think one of two things. ‘I will not find peace until that changes’ or ‘If I can just change that then I will at peace’.

One aspect I love about Ignatius’ teaching on discernment is that it is clear that most things are in themselves are actually neutral. What is significant is what happens in me when I come into contact with that thing. Couple this with Jim’s idea that there is a peace that can be found which transcends my interaction with that thing, and I realise that the source of my disquiet may not be the thing, but my reaction to it.

The question then becomes why I am reacting to this thing which is not inherently harmful. What is it in me that is activated in an unhealthy way? What is my ‘hook’? When I can identify that the spectre of the thing loses much of its power. I may still need to be cautious, but I can be cautious and peaceful. I can be cautious and interiorly free.

4 thoughts on “There is a peace…

  1. This is an excellent reflection. For me, it is a matter of remembering that God has been with me through some very difficult times and God will continue to be with me. That is my grounding and I remind myself that I need to trust. When I’m able to do that, then I’m at peace.
    Your mention of “interiorly free” speaks to me as my prayer is to be detached as Ignatius writes in The First Principle and Foundation:
    “We should not fix our desires on health or sickness, wealth or poverty, success or failure, a long life or a short one. For everything has the potential of calling forth in us a deeper response to our life in God.
    Our only desire and our one choice should be this: I want and I choose what better leads to God’s deepening his life in me.”
    Mags, thanks very much for this reflection.

  2. Thank you, Mags, for this timely reflection as I continue to unpack my reactions to several very disquieting events over the past week. Your words have moved me to a deeper place.

  3. Much needed insight, Mags. Thanx so much. I too have to reflect on my reactions to certain things and situations which result in me losing my peace. Thanx for introducing us to Ignation spirituality and a life of reflection through the examen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *