DEEPER LEVEL OF PEACE

Sun.Star Pampanga - - PERSPECTIVE! - MARY GRACEHELYN B. USI

The con­cept of peace varies and de­pends on the per­cep­tion of each in­di­vid­ual. Though hu­mankind has been con­sis­tently hoped for peace, there are still some of us who don’t value its im­por­tance. Wars, con­flicts, and prob­lems be­tween in­di­vid­u­als and dif­fer­ent groups of peo­ple are con­tin­u­ously aris­ing be­cause of per­sonal in­ter­ests.

One of the most strik­ing quo­ta­tions about peace that I re­mem­ber the most ex­presses the idea of be­ing se­lec­tive with our bat­tles, and that some­times peace is bet­ter than be­ing right. Thus, I re­al­ized that peace be­gins within the mind and heart of each in­di­vid­ual. In­ner peace en­ables hu­man to achieve a state of calm­ness and seren­ity which helps us to ex­er­cise in­te­ri­or­ity and ex­ter­nal­ity to a deeper level.

In the past years of ser­vice in the teach­ing pro­fes­sion, my mind had been opened in the re­al­ity of life. I thought it was enough to ed­u­cate the stu­dents and make them learn and mas­ter all the con­cepts in my class. But, I came to re­al­ize that it doesn’t end there.

In my first year of teach­ing in the pub­lic school, things were quite dif­fi­cult to han­dle. I, who grew up not ex­pe­ri­enc­ing such dif­fi­cul­ties, was a bit shaken. In this so­ci­ety where poverty is the most preva­lent prob­lem, many of my stu­dents suf­fer. I never imag­ined that there were these stu­dents who were al­ways late, ab­sent, and drop be­cause most of them are work­ing and some can­not even af­ford to go to school. It breaks my heart be­cause I al­ways got up­set with these stu­dents not know­ing what they were go­ing through. How­ever, the re­al­iza­tions of these re­al­i­ties made me more un­der­stand­ing and avoid hav­ing con­flicts with the stu­dents.

I can­not do any­thing to solve poverty. But, what I can do is to pro­mote peace among the stu­dents and teach­ers. I will raise aware­ness to my fel­low teach­ers about poverty be­ing one of the rea­sons of the stu­dents for be­ing late and ab­sent in the school. I will en­cour­age them not to just sim­ply scold these in­no­cent stu­dents, but to un­der­stand them and ex­tend their help­ing hands if they can. Though I have more ex­ter­nal peace at the mo­ment, my heart is still break­ing for the stu­dents which af­fect my in­ner peace. But, I have a deeper level of in­ner peace in a sense that I am calmer and more un­der­stand­ing when­ever I en­counter stu­dents with un­pleas­ant ac­tions. I hope that in the fu­ture, there will be a bet­ter so­ci­ety with­out selfish who only con­sid­ers their per­sonal in­ter­ests so that none of the stu­dents would have to suf­fer from poverty which is not their fault in the very first place.

--oOo— The au­thor is Mas­ter Teacher I at Masan­tol High School

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