The Quest for World Peace

by Joan C. Akubue

The state of the world doesn’t bring tears to my eyes anymore. You know the feeling of not knowing whether to laugh or to cry? Well, that’s the way I feel half the time. Was thinking the other day: ‘hey, why is it we humans find it so difficult to get along with one another?’ Termites unite to get the colony in ship-shape and birds can migrate tremendous distances in harmony. True, jungle beasts sometimes over step their boundaries, but ultimately the scheme of things remain undistorted. For instance, even an uncultured and unschooled leopard knows better than to lust after a stronger leopard’s prey and the bush animals all respect the fact that the elephant is the bona fide king of the wild (is it the elephant or the lion, by the way?).

We on the other hand are yet to decide the sort of leadership that really works for us. Apparently, animals have more sense than we give them credit for. Ever heard of a ‘world war’ amongst amphibians or reptiles?

We hear the same story as we travel the length and width of the earth.

I try daily to trace the genesis of this unfortunate predicament: in other words to discover the reason why we find no joy in our diversity, but rather see our differences as an excuse to tear our world apart.

Believe me, it has been a tedious search thus far.

What better place to have begun my search than in the book of Genesis? There we are told that men once co-existed with such oneness of heart and purpose that Divinity (in anticipation of the unthinkable we would achieve) quite frankly put It’s foot down! The aftermath of our bravado is what we suffer now: we can barely understand one another. Have you ever been trapped in the company of people who are speaking a language that you cannot understand?

It happens to me all the time and quite frankly I can’t stand it. A hindrance to proper communication is certainly the most exasperating feeling in the world, especially when one really does want to communicate.

World peace? Can we really achieve world peace? No, to be fair, the first question should be “do we really want to achieve World peace and do we have what it takes to do that?” The truth is that people prefer to look out for their own interests and are not really keen on visualizing the big picture. Every tribe or sect, these days, has got some land or ego issues at stake and at the same time, certain individuals within it who are quite prepared to die over these issues. With so many of our opinions and interests conflicting, how can over 5 billion people worldwide be in complete unison?

Maybe more enlightenment could help to entrench values that would help us embrace peace. For instance, who says any party actually wins in a war? And who says the one who shouts himself hoarse is the winner of an argument? The point is that no one really loses or wins an argument. The important thing is that both parties adequately express themselves and come to a greater understanding of each other.

What happens in a situation where two parties in a quandary have direly conflicting interests at stake? How easy is it for one party to give up a cherished asset or ideal in favor of some vague notion called ‘peace’? What for instance can one tell the Jews and Arabs who are vying so passionately over portions of some sacred land? Two entirely different belief systems are at war here! It’s pretty much like having Christians and voodoo priests claiming ownership of an asset.

Would any firebrand Christian sect be comfortable with the thought of relinquishing land to Voodoo weirdoes seeking a space to erect some spooky shrine? Certainly not when one party sees its own religion as far superior to the other man’s own!

It’s the easiest thing in the world to preach peace, but when the chips are down, we quite frankly see only our own worldview. Theory is one thing and practice is another. And if truth were told, the majority of us do not desire any form of peace.

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1 comment

Okolo Dennis Denmark April 25, 2007 - 9:00 am

For a graduate of Computer Science,having such indept analises of Religiuos understanding and tolerance..Akugbue,I give it to you..kindly get across via my mail,iam a final yr student of Religion and Phy… and i am interested in more of these works.thanks,08077978352 is my numb.


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