Someone sent me this in an email. It hangs on the bulletin board in my office so that I can glance over at it, and remind myself that yes, despite how overwhelmed I feel at times, I really do feel peaceful.
There was once a King who offered a prize to the artist who could paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried. The King looked at all the pictures, but there were only two that he really liked, and he had to choose between them.
One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror for the peaceful towering mountains all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.
The second picture had mountains, too. But these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell, and in which lightning played. Down the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look peaceful at all.
But when the King looked, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest…..a perfect picture of peace.
Which of the pictures won the prize?
The King chose the second picture.
Do you know why?
“Because,” explained the King, “peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace.”
That is the REAL meaning of peace.