The Importance of Peace: Part 2 – Universal Peace
The last article in this series looking into the definition of peace and what is likely to be a relatively limited understand of a much broader concept.
Click here if you didn’t get a chance to read Part 1, or would like to refresh your memory on the discussion.
The second part of this series gets to the core of what we really mean by the term Shanti.
The three Shantis
We have all noticed that Shanti is chanted three times at at the end of a pooja, yagnya or even brief arathi in our homes.
Why? The reason is not that we emphasize the idea three times, it is in fact to address three distinct mediums: Divine interventions, Worldy troubles and Personal troubles
- Divine interventions. Those events that are known as ‘acts of God’, such as natural disasters, are known as Adhi-daivikam.
- Worldy troubles. These arise from events around us – such as problems caused by arguments with others, crime, noise pollution, animal attacks and incidents.
- Personal troubles. The mental disturbances caused by our own perceived inadequacies, wants, losses and personal traumas are in this category.
The reasons above have been summarised from this excellent site: http://archives.amritapuri.org/bharat/mantra/shanti.php. Please visit the link for a fuller explanation.
What is more important? Who can tell?
It is arguable whether the first or the third category is most important. Acts of God can of course have cataclysmic ramifications for people but personal tragedy could also be equally painful. Without attempting to untangle this idea, we chant Shanti three times to capture any such misfortunes in entirety.
With this understanding, let us keep ensure that no matter how selfish our prayers, thoughts and deeds on a day to day basis, we must bear in mind our social and metaphysical obligation to preserve peace in all realms for all beings by chanting Shanti for all.
In the next post we will learn the Vedic mantras to help each of us become a channel of peace.
Coming soon – Part 3 – The Panchashanti Mantras.