Inspirational quotes from Peace Pilgrim

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Photo by Sam Mgrdichian on Unsplash

Peace Pilgrim was an American woman who walked across the USA for more than 28 years, walking more than 25,000 miles and speaking to people she met about peace.

She began her pilgrimage in 1953 after she decided to dedicate her life to creating peace. Wearing a blue tunic with the words PEACE PILGRIM on the front, she vowed, “I shall remain a wanderer until mankind has learned the way of peace, walking until I am given shelter and fasting until I am given food.” In the pockets of her tunic, Peace Pilgrim carried her only possessions: a comb, a folding toothbrush, a ballpoint pen, copies of her message, and her current correspondence.

Peace’s pilgrimage ended in 1981 when she was involved in a car accident while she was being driven to her next speaking engagement. Her words and inner spirit continue to inspire millions of people to this day.

Spiritual Truth

“Truth is the pearl without price. One cannot obtain truth by buying it – all you can do is to strive for spiritual truth and when one is ready, it will be given freely. Nor should spiritual truth be sold, lest the seller be injured spiritually. You lose any spiritual contact the moment you commercialize it. those who have the truth would not be packaging it and selling it, so anyone who is selling it, really does not possess it.”

“I always think of the bud of a flower. If you give it proper conditions it will open into a beautiful flower, but if you’re impatient and try to tear the petals open you permanently injure the flower for the earth life. The flower can be equated with the earthly human life. Give the spiritual growing-up the proper growing conditions and it will open into a thing of beauty.”

Life experience

“Life is a series of tests; but if you pass your tests, you look back upon them as good experiences.”

“Every experience is what you make it and it serves a purpose. It might inspire you, it might educate you, or it might come to give you a chance to be of service in some way.”

“Concealed in every new situation we face is a spiritual lesson to be learned and a spiritual blessing for us if we learn that lesson. It is good to be tested. We grow and learn through passing tests.”

“Were I to solve problems for others they would remain stagnant; they would never grow. It would be a great injustice to them. My approach is to help with the cause rather than effect. When I help others, it is by instilling in them the inspiration to work out problems by themselves. If you feed a man a meal, you only feed him for a day – but if you teach a man to grow food, you feed him for a lifetime.”

Love and faith

“No one walks so safely as one who walks humbly and harmlessly with great love and great faith. For such a person gets through to the good in others (and there is good in everyone), and therefore cannot be harmed. This works between individuals, it works between groups and it would work between nations if nations had the courage to try it.”

“Never underestimate the power of God’s love – it transforms! It reaches the spark of good in the other person and the person is disarmed.”

“There are no accidents in the Divine Plan nor does God leave us unattended. No one walks so safely as those who walk humbly and harmlessly with great love and great faith.”

“We must see the good in people. We must know it is there, no matter how deeply it may be buried. Yes, apathy and selfishness is there – but good is there also. It is not through judgment that the good can be reached, but through love and faith.”

Power of thought

“You know the power of thought. You’re constantly creating through thought. And you attract to you whatever you fear. (I fear nothing and expect good – so good comes!)”

“Are you a slave to your self-centered nature, or does your divine nature guide your life? Do you know that every moment of your life you’re creating through thought?”

“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a defeatist or negative thought.”

Kindness

“When you approach others in judgment they will be on the defensive. When you are able to approach them in a kindly, loving manner without judgment they will tend to judge themselves and be transformed.”

Material possessions, success and happiness

“In this materialistic age we have such a false criteria by which to measure success. We measure it in terms of dollars, in terms of material things. But happiness and inner peace do not lie in that direction. If you know but do not do, you are a very unhappy person indeed.”

“Unnecessary possessions are unnecessary burdens. If you have them, you have to take care of them.”

“I am not a slave to comfort and convenience. I wouldn’t be a pilgrim if I were. We can allow false beliefs to govern our lives and be enslaved by them. Most people do not wish to be free. They would prefer to moan and chafe about how impossible it is to give up their various enslavements to possessions, food, drink, smoking, and so forth. It is not that they can’t give them up – they don’t really want to give them up.”

Creating Peace

“In this day and age when humanity totters on the brink of a nuclear war of annihilation, it is not surprising that one life is dedicated to the cause of peace – but rather it is surprising that many lives are not similarly dedicated.”

“We people of the world need to find ways to get to know one another – for then we will recognize that our likenesses are so much greater than our differences, however great our differences may seem. Every cell, every human being, is of equal importance and has work to do in this world.”

“Evil cannot be overcome by more evil. Evil can only be overcome by good.”

“We need not reach out to tear down that which is evil because nothing which is contrary to God’s laws can endure. All not-good things in the world are transient, containing within themselves the seeds of their own destruction. We can help them to fade away more quickly only insofar as we remain in obedience to God’s laws that evil must be overcome with good.”

Purpose of life and finding a calling

“You have the endless energy only when you are working for the good of the whole – you have to stop working for your little selfish interests. That’s the secret of it. In this world you are given as you give!”

“Most people interested in vacations are those who are dong things they are not called to do, which they want to get away from for awhile.”

“I asked what her calling was, and she said, “I’m not called to do anything.” That was not true. What she really meant was she didn’t know her calling. So I asked her what she liked to do because if it is your calling you will do it as easily and joyously as I walk my pilgrimage. I found she liked to do three things. She liked to play the piano, but wasn’t good enough to earn her living at that. She liked to swim, but wasn’t good enough to be a swimming instructor, and she liked to work with flowers. I got her a job at a florist shop so she could earn her living working with flowers. She loved it. She said she would do it for nothing. But we used the other things too. Remember, she needed more than just a livelihood. She needed other things. The swimming became her exercise. It fits in with sensible living habits. The piano playing became her path of service. She went to a retirement home and played the old songs for people there. She got them to sing, and she was good at that. Out of those three things such a beautiful life was built for that woman.”

Nature

“How good it is to eat fruit tasty and ripe from the tree and vegetables fresh and crisp from the field. And how good it would be for the farming of the future to concentrate on the non-use of poisonous substances, such as sprays, so food would be fit to go from farm to table.”

“How good it is to earn your livelihood helping plants to grow to provide people with food. In other words, how good it is to earn your livelihood by contributing constructively to the society in which you live – everyone should, of course, and in a healthy society everyone would.”


peace-pilgrim-book

All quotes are from the book Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work in Her Own Words., which is available for free from the Peace Pilgrim Charity to anyone who requests a copy.


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