The Peace That Passes All Understanding

Evening fishing on the waterThe word “Shalom” means “peace” and “complete” in Hebrew and is derived from the word “whole”. The Sanskrit word for peace is “Shanti” and it also means silence. We now see that there is direct connection between silence, wholeness, and peace.

When our mind is in silence we free ourselves from the chatter of our ego. When the ego is sidelined, it ends division and we become whole. When the peace within reaches its highest level we reach a state of such silence that we transcend all division including language and space-time. This is the realm beyond words, thoughts, and language and the Bible calls it “The peace that passes all understanding.” (Philippians 4.7)

The power of this silence is so great that almost every prayer of the ancients in India ends with the invocation to peace, “Shanti! Shanti! Shanti!”

With this background, let us go back thousands of years and read the poem written in Atharva Veda. Let us invoke the peace it projects for our every living moment:

“Peace be to earth and to airy spaces!
Peace be to heaven, peace to the waters,
peace to the plants and peace to the trees!
May all the gods grant me peace!
By this invocation of peace may peace be diffused!
By this invocation of peace may peace bring peace!
With this peace the dreadful I appease,
with this peace the cruel I appease,
with this peace all evil I appease,
so that peace may prevail, happiness prevail!
May everything for us be peaceful!”
-Atharva Veda 19.9.14

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