When life is going well and events in our lives are progressing according to plan, spirituality is more often than not, put to the wayside. However, faced with challenging situations like illness, death, divorce, unfulfilling jobs, and financial issues we seek consolation, so that we can find peace amongst chaos. But seeing life in this way can only bring us unhappiness as we are always moving in-between polarities. In truth, our spiritual path is our life and the way we choose to perceive it is what makes the difference between our happiness and pain.
When life is going well, we judge it to be good and when life is not, we judge it to be bad. But this is not the what is. What is are the events that are taking place on a daily basis free of the judgments we place upon them. Granted some experiences in life feel great and others dont, but our idea that what is unpleasant is bad is what creates the pain and emotional reaction within us.
In the Bhagavad Gita it says: The self-controlled soul, who moves amongst sense objects, free from either attachment or repulsion, he wins eternal peace. This is a powerful quote illustrating the key to inner peace. Anyone who follows this simple advice will be content their entire life no matter what circumstances they are in. To understand this wisdom more deeply, we first need to be clear about the meaning of sense objects.
A sense object is what we perceive using our senses. We, as spiritual beings, use the human body as our means of interaction within this reality. We may know from an intellectual point of view that everything is energy, but our eyes tell us otherwise. They tell us that we are looking at people and things as the body is a mechanism of interpretation and objectifies what it perceives. Once the body interprets energy as something the mind then further determines whether it is good or bad, pretty or ugly, or right or wrong. Once we make this determination and believe our assessment to be true, then we have an emotional reaction appropriate to our judgment. So if we perceive something and determine it is ugly, our emotional reaction will be repulsion, disgust, or gross! If we perceive something and determine it to be pretty or wonderful, our emotional reaction will be attraction, happiness and joy.
If we could recognize on a deep level that what we perceive is a choice, we could take control of what our mind is telling us and free ourselves from the constant fluctuation between attraction and repulsion and the emotional reactions that come from those perceptions. The result of the cessation of this constant fluctuation is peace. In the most basic language I can use, to be happy in life we must let go of our chronic habit of judging everything we perceive in life. Once that habit ends, we can be in the world but not of it and find our inner peace.
The MA Programme Peace, Development, Security and International Conflict Transformation celebrated a special anniversary in January 2020, namely the start of its 30th semester.
On this occasion the University of Innsbruck welcomed the new generation of peace students and celebrate the graduation of those who have successfully concluded their studies with the degree “Master of Arts in Peace Studies”.
The live music of Elisabeth Jürschik (Viola), Brigitte Pfurtscheller (German Flute) and Stefan Wolf (Guitar) accompanied this wonderful evening.
For further information please visit Peace Studies Innsbruck: https://www.uibk.ac.at/peacestudies/
5:30 Welcome Address to the 30th Opening Ceremony: Prof. Dr. Dirk Rupnow, Dean Faculty of Humanities
13:20 Research, Publications, International Cooperation: Adham Hamed, MA, Research Fellow
36:13 Highlights of Alumni Projects: Alumni
47:10 Peace Studies Innsbruck – State of Affairs: Prof. DDr. Wolfgang Dietrich, Head of Unit
1:06:39 Special Graduation of Maj. Gen. Mag. Herbert Bauer. Laudatio: Mag. Ingrid Felipe, Vice-Governor of the Tyrol
1:17:23 Acceptance Speech: Maj. Gen. Mag. Herbert Bauer
1:20:18 Anthem: All is Welcome Here
1:25:53 Graduating Students
Emina Briga (Norway)
Magne Bondkall (Norway)
Josefina Chudnobsky (Argentina)
Mirjam Endres (Germany)
Jessica Hawkins (Canada)
Ana Isabel Hernandez (Venezuela)
Luisa Maldonado (Colombia)
Julia Michel (Germany)
Phyllis Obare (Kenya)
Michaela Söllinger (Austria)
Mary Ann Torres Vergara (Austria)
Tuva Widskjold (Norway)