“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”
I’ve spent a lot of my life settling for creating false peace in order to protect myself from the discomfort of choosing to cultivate real peace. False peace can come in many forms and I would imagine you have your own experiences of this. Moments when you acquiesced when a kind and gentle challenge was what was needed. Moments when you over reacted out of your own historical pain when a deeper presence and listening was warranted. I’m not sure what it truly means to make real peace in every situation the way Yeshua calls us to because it would seem that the prerequisite for this kind of peacemaking is in the previous beatitude - three centered presence and pure-ness in heart.
From three centered presence and pure-ness of heart we can make peace.
When I ponder being a maker of something it is clear that this is an active engaged posture and it usually requires the mind to plan, the physical being to execute, and a feeling of connection to that which is being made. Depending on what you make, it can be a laborious process with many steps involved.
When I reflect upon peace I am reminded that experiencing peace does not require that our external circumstances are peaceful. I have tasted peace in the midst of life’s storms and I’m sure you have too. When I looked up the definition of peace I was struck by the recognition that many of the definitions began with “freedom from…”
What if making peace has something to do with seeing a situation and recognizing the places that are not free and bringing what is needed for peace to emerge? What if making peace has less to do with comfort and more to do with disparate parts coming back into relationship so that there is no longer harmful division?
Inwardly, in order to make peace we have to let go of our self/others protective agendas rooted in our binary operating system and drop into our pure heart to “see” from wholeness. In The Wisdom Jesus Cynthia says, “When the field of vision has been unified, the inner being comes to rest, and that inner peaceableness flows into the outer world as harmony and compassion.” Then outwardly we will see what is needed that can make peace and this is not always clean and tidy but it will most definitely involve spaciousness.
The peacemakers are blessed and will be called the children of God. I love Neil Douglas-Klotz’s translation in Prayers for the Cosmos for “children” referring “to any embodiment, emanation, or active production from that which was only potential before.” He also mentions “shall be called” presents “the beautiful image of digging a channel or well that allows water to flow. In this sense, as we ‘[make] peace’ we become channels or fountains for hastening the fulfillment of the divine will.” Emanations of divine potential, channels quickening divine will…that is something to purify one’s heart for.
This week, we continue with our exploration of the Beatitudes. Hold inside yourself and meditate on the eighth Beatitude as well as a few alternative translations from Prayers of the Cosmos: Reflecting on the Original Meaning of Jesus’s Words.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessings to those who are dislocated for the cause of justice; their new home is the province of the universe.
Health to those who are dominated and driven apart because they long for a firm foundation; their domain is created by the word above, the earth beneath.
Tuned to the Source are those persecuted for trying to right society’s balance; to them belongs the coming king-and queendom.
Spend some time in lectio divina with the one that you are most drawn to.
First, take a moment to sense your body and drop into heart. Speak the words out loud. Listen with the ear of your heart and allow yourself to be drawn to a word or phrase that touches you.
Second, speak the words aloud again. Mull what struck you around with all three centers. Reflect on the text, allowing the questions, insights, and memories to flow from your own life experience. Ask yourself what relevance or application this has to yourself, how does this touch my life at this time?
Third, speak the words aloud again. Notice your interior response to what is arising and whether there is a prayer or gesture or image that can be offered on behalf of you, others, the world, or God.
Fourth, speak the words aloud again. Rest in the stillness within, allowing all that has emerged to settle further in you in silence.
May we cleanse the lens of our hearts
May we be bearers of freedom
May we become peacemakers
With Great Love,
Here are most of the readings from this week:
“This line was translated, ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.’ Lahwvday refers to those who not only make or perform an action but also are committed to it. The old roots call up more images of planting: tilling the ground, laboring regularly, bringing forth fruit, and celebrating. The emphasis is on that which is done periodically and regularly - despite the odds, as one might say.
The word for ‘peace’ (shlama) is essentially the same as that used through the Middle East for thousands of years as a greeting. It also means health, safety, a mutual agreement that saves a difficult situation, any happy assembly, or a stroke that unites all parties in sympathy.
The word for ‘children’ (dawnawhie) refers to any embodiment, emanation, or active production from that which was only potential before. The roots of the word translated as ‘shall be called’ (nitqarun) also present the beautiful image of digging a channel or well that allows water to flow. In this sense, as we ‘plant peace’ we become channels or fountains for hastening the fulfillment of the divine will.”
— Neil Douglas-Klotz Prayers of the Cosmos
“‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.’ This beatitude follows as the logical consequence of all that has been laid out so far. When our hearts are gentled and single, when we’ve tamed the animal instincts, we become peacemakers. We are no longer wielding the sword of the binary operator that divides the world into good guys and bad guys, insiders and outsiders, winning team and losing team. When the field of vision has been unified, the inner being comes to rest, and that inner peaceableness flows into the outer world as harmony and compassion.”
— Cynthia Bourgeault, The Wisdom Jesus
So that I stopped
into the waters
seeing not only
my reflected face
but the great sky
my lonely figure
and after a moment
I lifted my hands
and then my eyes
and I allowed myself
to be astonished
by the great
calling to me
like an old
by the sun
and the spring,
and the cloud
and the light,
calling to me
from where I stood,
as if I could
I had been given
and everything ever
taken from me,
as if I could be
everything I have ever
I could ever know,
as if I knew
both the way I had come
I was still
promised to go,
like this, with the
and the symmetry
of the moving sky,
caught in still waters.
Someone I have been,
I am just,
about to become,
something I am
and will be forever,
the sheer generosity
of being loved
the miracle reflection
of a twice blessed life.
— David Whyte