Equanimity is the mental calmness, composure, and evenness of temper. A person may have a calm attitude, but complete equanimity is determined when one is faced with a difficult situation. The whole point of maintaining a calm, even mindset is to, at one point, be able to spread peace and love naturally. Complete equanimity is one part of the Dalai Lama’s curriculum he teaches. He believes we should overcome our feelings of partiality and maintain the same level of intimacy with others, as we do with our loved ones. Complete equanimity may be too idealistic for some, but if we are able to aspire towards complete equanimity, we are naturally going to spread peace. To achieve peace, we must, first, understand that everyone wants to find happiness and, second, we must treat everyone with an equal respect, maintaining a stable persona with everyone.
With everything going on in the news and media, it’s hard for us Americans, in particular, to find a common ground. Sometimes, we tend to look too far into situations, and we forget about our common sense. Let’s take a step back, shall we. What do we all want out of life? What does a Democrat and a Republican have in common? I can assure you, not very much, in terms of political issues. But I can assure you, that you and I, Democrats and Republicans all want to find happiness. This is a fundamental right we all are entitled to. Happiness. So look around, wherever you are. Everyone you see, has one goal. That goal is to be happy. Now, they might have different beliefs and different ways of achieving happiness, that you may not agree with, but everyone’s overall outcome of their set goals, are happiness. Recognizing that everyone in this world has at least one thing in common, is the first step to achieving world peace.
“A feeling of closeness toward all others can be developed based on the simple recognition that, just like myself, all wish to be happy and avoid suffering.” - Dalai Lama
The second step to achieving self-equanimity is to treat everyone with an equal respect and maintain a continual persona with everyone we come in contact with. We must live by this principle even with our loved ones, inside the home. Achieving complete equanimity will not tolerate any feelings of favoritism. According to the Dalai Lama, “If we reserve ethical conduct for those whom we feel close to, the danger is that we will neglect our responsibilities toward those outside the circle.” We must balance our love evenly and distribute our love evenly to everyone inside and outside of the home. Only distributing our love to our family members is limiting our ability to spread world peace. We must treat everyone evenly, with respect, and that is the second step to achieving world peace.
The ideas the Dalai Lama proposes may be too idealistic for our circumstances, here in America, but the overall points the Dalai Lama makes can be very beneficial to us. We can experiment with these two basic steps of: recognizing everyone’s common goal of feeling happiness, and treating everyone with a mutual, consistent respect. If we are able to incorporate the basis of the Dalai Lama’s teachings into our lives, we are already heading towards world peace. Let’s take it one day at a time, young America. Let’s keep improving one day at a time, and let’s just be happy. After all, who wants to be in the dun drums all day? Not me. :-)