The Place of Infinite Peace

Green Infinite Inner PeaceWe all have the ability to know our natural state of inner-peace. It’s always there, always accessible…but not always our main state of being.

For the past few months, as Summer faded through Fall and into Winter, I have felt the pull of darkness in my spirit. This happens to me every year. I’ve written poems about it, fought it, tried to nurture it, but it always happens. Shorter days and colder temperatures dampen my spirits.

This year I felt the downturn particularly strongly because I had one of the happiest summers I’ve had in two decades. My spirit felt free and creative and focused. A state of positive joy lasted long enough to leave a deep impression. For a time I was able to see beyond my own limited existence, my ego and habits of narrow thinking, to a place of possibility. I began to know a place of freedom, of evolution toward being a happier, more productive, more stable person.

Now, when I take daily meditation walks, the dry wind burns my eyes and my limbs struggle to retain warmth and vigor. At home, darkness tends to shutter my optimism, the freedom I felt during Summer. Despite the nagging downturn of my mood, I’ve been able to retain some of the habits I learned while naturally lighter in spirit.

Yesterday, after a particularly bad argument with a good friend, I took a walk to find my center. My heart and mind churned with the inevitable chaos which occurs after upheavals like that. The cold and dark scenery didn’t help. Then I remembered a talk I had had with that same friend a few weeks ago about the “chamber of peace” we all have within us. (the link is to the poem I wrote about it)

I was able to visualize this place in myself, where I could feel safe from the violence of my rabid doubts as well as from my stubborn desire to be right. I reminded myself of the simple truths of existence which always comfort me: that we are never born and we never die, that being right or wrong is not as important as the willingness to grow.

In this place of infinite peace, we are not judged, and do not need to judge. We can release our fears, our doubts and our righteousness where they are not needed, for this place inside us has no boundaries, no time, no rules, no good and no bad. It is where we can feel the infinite love and forgiveness which flows from us, but which is usually clogged by so much external chaos. In short, it is a place of healing. And we can go there anytime we want. I usually feel it in my chest, nurtured by my breath.

For a few moments, I felt free and infinite again, and I softened into a place where I didn’t have to win the argument. My big Self flourished briefly from this respite in the place of infinite peace.

Of course, the usual habits of taking sides returned by the time I got home, and our argument continued, even more heated than before. My small self ran the show again. We eventually came to mutual understanding and reconciliation. Our hearts softened as our minds cleared. But I felt I had covered new ground.

The important thing is, I was able to vividly feel the difference between the small self and big Self. I was also able to accept that my small self had more clout right now, but that the big Self was at least accessible to give me an ideal perspective to work toward. This kind of honest seeing is one of the most important lessons in Buddhism.

The place of infinite peace offers us someplace to retreat to and something to strive toward. Seeing clearly and with patient steadfastness, we can truly grow from where we are now.

13 thoughts on “The Place of Infinite Peace

  1. Pingback: Dad Daily Blog » Blog Archive » Why the Internet is a good thing

  2. How true. Yes, I hate the winter too, and get ‘sad’. We should migrate, like birds do.

    That feeling of smaller self vs the Self is a real gift, and as my teacher says, have you reached ‘the critical mass of bother’ yet?
    Sometimes it feels like you’ve been put into a centifugal force machine, and all the Good Stuff at one end, and the rest at the other end. When you reach the critical mass of bother, then you’re ripe for doing something different. Maybe. That’s the idea, anyway. 😉

  3. Hello, Chandira, what a beautiful name you have.

    I like the light-hearted way your teacher puts the issues of striving toward the bigger Self. “critical mass of bother”. It depends on your endurance for bother!


  4. I like this description of the “chamber of peace”, although the poetic one is to die for!
    It is amazing how you use the words upheaval and chaos, and how each one of us need to visualize peace, (or a “happy-ending” if you will), in order to get there. Like a work of art: one has a vision, and works and elaborates on it, by making it even richer. But the vision is the leading light.
    I am sure your friend first felt shattered, then all cleansed by the clear, still air of your “chamber of peace”

  5. This is soothing. The best advice I ever got about my cycling being was not from my psychiatrist, but from my writing instructor- he said, “Go with it”.

    And thanks for the request on my blog- I’ll email you the answer so I don’t spam your lovely site!

  6. 🙂 I have to smile at this post. I too, feel like I struggle to remember a higher state when I’m in the pits. All I seem to be able to see is the dirt around me, and I respond to the pit. It never occurs to me to stop and look up at the sky, I’m never boxed in, I just don’t look up. I see the dirt walls around because that’s what’s in my direct line of sight. The sky is much larger and feels so much nicer than my pit, if only I could remember to look up when it would truly do me some immediate good to.

    Those few moments when I do, leave me feeling so very proud of myself. I walk around feeling like I recieved an A+ on a Spirit exam 🙂

    It’s not terribly hard to look up when we’re laying down, clearing our minds, but ohhhh is it difficult do that when it really matters.

    It’s refreshing to hear someone speak candidly about this.



  7. Not long ago I was driving to Milwaukee with a friend and we were stuck interstate traffic that added an hour to our day trip for a meeting. She was talking about something she dreaded doing. I was talking about soemthings that I couldn’t get going. At one point I said it was good that we were on our way to see this particular person who is always a positive influence because it seemed we both doing everything we could to feel sorry for ourselves in the most logical way we could. We both laughed and continued doing it.

    Within 10 minutes after our arrival at Mr. Positive’s home we were different people. Bigger, better, happier and more giving in nature. Sometimes to find that place inside we can get their with the help of someone outside of us.


  8. Liz- being the self-reliant type, I don’t like to count on others to make me better, but perhaps it’s a fact I need to face. There are those spirits who bring everyone elses spirit up with them. ghl

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