Why ‘Peace’ Is A Luxury We Can All Lose Any Minute

Posted by Mariam Safoora in Society
November 22, 2017

The world should be reconstructed with peace and brotherhood.

This might seem like just another noble thought when in reality, it is so much more than that. It has become a necessity in today’s world.

We sit here basking in the luxuries that we have been granted – we have food, water, clothes, parents, friends, etc. You might scoff, “Luxuries are things like cars, big homes, and a bank balance, not basic stuff like food.” Well, you’re wrong. Because even as we speak, there are children in countries around the world watching on as their homes are bombed, their parents and relatives killed, their security and lives compromised. War has become the norm of the day, and they do not know a world without it. They would be grateful for all the ‘basic stuff’, that we so irresponsibly take for granted.

But doesn’t war seem like an extreme case to compare to? Don’t wars occur only when situations get out of hand? Well, true. But equally true is the fact that it only takes a little push to take things from ‘normal’ to an ‘extreme’. I would like to back my claim with a little example. You all know that there occurred a World War back in 1914, don’t you?

It was so terrible that the world leaders now are going to any lengths to prevent another one. But do you know that the terrible tragedy that took place for four long years started just because a group of vengeful nationalists in Serbia decided to kill the ruler of Austria? The keyword here is ‘vengeance’. I’m not implicating in any way that the death of one person is a trivial matter, but for all the other countries to have jumped on the bandwagon and start a whole war as a result, would you have expected that to happen? And here we are, thinking we’re safe from war.

As important it is to know what we want, it is equally important to know what we definitely do not want. And we definitely do not want war. On the contrary, a little peace would be more than welcome.

But this ‘peace’ has a price: It needs effort. The effort that we as individuals need to put in to build ourselves will consequently help us in reconstructing the world around us.

Also, I admit that this isn’t as easy, and the ‘effort’ is sometimes exhausting, and we often excuse ourselves from having to take these decisions at all. It is hard refraining ourselves from the little things like anger, jealousy, revenge, etc. But these things that might seem like innocent emotions, take root in our mind and become a cause for the bigger problems in the society. The problems that arise from our inability to see the inequality, the discrimination that our brothers and sisters are being subjected to, its cause adopting different aliases like religion, colour, caste, wealth, etc.

Often as we’re looking down from our high horses on TV at that kid in Myanmar being beaten up just because of his ethnicity, we fail to remember that it can just as easily happen to us, too. There’s, in fact, a concept called ‘The Butterfly Effect’ according to which small causes can have much larger effects. This might sound funny, but it is actually true. As true as the fact that this collective ignorance that we are contributing to, could one day cost us our ‘peace’.

And so we have to let go of this idea of the luxury of ‘choice’, and then the ‘freedom’ of ‘choosing’ to ignore whatever wrong is happening right in front of us, of the thought that we will not be held accountable, this reasoning that we use to escape from taking responsibility for our actions. Because by doing that, we’re all contributing to the existing system, and it becomes that much harder to start moving towards a better world, a better future.

Sure, there are protocols and policies in place by the governments to maintain peace, but this doesn’t mean it is not the responsibility of us individuals to strive to maintain it as well. In fact, we are the building blocks of the society, and when we are thinking right, then the society as a whole can be saved.

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