A Pure Land on Earth 2

When nations engage in war, when factions are in conflict, ordinary people caught in the middle experience suffering. Their hopes for peace and a fulfilling life are often dashed on the rocks of political or economic expediency. Contradictory as it may seem, leaders often resort to war to end war. In the name of peace, war is waged. The history of mankind has evolved along this self-destructive pattern. Ironically, this rule applies as well to smaller group dynamics. Ostensibly, everyone desires peace, but often a group uses force to control dissidents within its ranks. Again violence is used to suppress violence, even within the family.

Using violence to enforce peace often works, but at great cost. The ensuing peace is fragile and temporary. Soon, war breaks out again and often on a larger scale. In this way, throughout history, a durable peace has eluded the human race.


To achieve social peace, Buddhism begins with a program of inner peace, believing that long-lasting peace derives from the ability of each person to calm his or her own mind and to temper actions controlled by the mind. Thus empowered, individuals can encourage those in their immediate sphere of influence to also understand the need for peace and to begin calming their minds. In such a widening circle of influence, more and more people will be included. Step by step, people throughout the world can be at peace with themselves and with others. Like a pebble thrown into a pond, causing expanding ripples to reach the far shore, a single person can positively influence many others toward peaceful modes of thinking and acting.