A MESSAGE OF PEACE
By Ervin Laszlo
Founder and President of The Club of Budapest
There can be no greater insight today than that peace in the world depends crucially on peace in our hearts. One who is frustrated, harbors hate or the desire for revenge, and believes that the world treats him badly cannot relate to others and to nature in a spirit of peace and partnership. Whether the cause is the wounded ego of a person or the wounded self-respect of a people, and whether it is the wish for personal revenge or a holy war for the defense of a faith, the result is violence, death, and catastrophe. Attaining peace within one's heart is a fundamental precondition of attaining peace in the world.
Attaining inner peace is a task that each of us has to fulfill in the intimacy of his or her own heart. For individuals, achieving inner peace calls for an evolved consciousness, supported by conditions that allow a life of basic dignity, free of the stresses and deprivations that sap strength and challenge character. For a nation, culture or religion, inner peace requires understanding and respect by all the world's peoples for the diversity of the lifeways and beliefs cherished and held sacred by people, however small or large, powerful or powerless they may be.
A new consciousness is arising in all parts of the world, East as well as West, South as well as North. Its spread is the crucial factor in attaining enduring peace in the world. Persons with the new consciousness muster the will and evolve the vision to adopt a planetary ethic of responsibility and concern for all members of the human family wherever they may live and whatever their national and ethnic origin and belief system. Such an ethic, adopted and practiced by a critical mass of the world's peoples, could right today's wrongs and create a higher level of justice and wellbeing. In the final count a planetary ethic, and the consciousness required to embrace it, is the best, and perhaps the only, way to break through the vicious circle where lack of inner peace prevents the outer peace which in turn is the precondition of inner peace.
When in the world's peoples, nations and cultures consciousness evolves to a higher plane and a planetary ethic is embraced by leaders and citizens alike, genuine and lasting peace will come to Earth - peace that is not merely the absence of violence, terrorism, and war, but the expression of a spirit that is commensurate with the heart and the mind of a species that calls itself Homo sapiens.