HomeSeptember 2023My fellow travelers

This is an invitation from TRACIE PAPE to practice Peacefulness and see what the simple and powerful intentions can create within you and in others.

“Let there be Peace on Earth and let it begin with me.” 
Vince Gill

Growing up in the Catholic Church, singing this song was my favorite part of the mass. With everyone singing in unison, a sense of connectedness would arise each Sunday when we sang the chorus. For those who meditate, Peacefulness feels like this hymn. Many traditions focus on the importance of love for all and working for a more peaceful world. 

As a longtime Heartfulness practitioner and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, my understanding of the role spirituality plays in our well-being has evolved. Suffering is an inevitable part of human existence. A common reaction to suffering is to withdraw and isolate in an attempt to protect others from experiencing our distress. Loneliness is one of the most significant factors in contributing to human suffering. One of the greatest gifts we can receive and offer is presence and bearing witness to pain. This is support in its purest form and offers balm for the soul. Presence is manifested in Peacefulness and allowing all to exist as they are, sending out the intention that we can live in harmony with ourselves and each other.

I can practice this even when not physically connected to others. I often think of Peacefulness as a pregnant pause. It is a pause and an intention full of potential, unknown and unseen. Before I meditate, before I work, before I interact with others, I pause and enter a state of Peacefulness, allowing me to connect with my values and highest intentions. Peacefulness makes space for stillness, reflection, and intent.

Peacefulness allows me to feel connected with others and all beings in that pause, reflection, and intent. I experience Peacefulness as self-compassion turned outward. When I send out an intention for peace, kindness, compassion, and love, I am connecting with that place within me that experiences that condition and hopes for others to experience it. When I practice self-compassion, I tap into the idea that I am already enough as I am, which supports self-love and self-acceptance. Peacefulness helps me tap into this idea that we are all enough as we are, with the intention of spreading this awareness and insight.

Peacefulness helps me tap into this idea 
that we are all enough as we are,
with the intention of spreading this
awareness and insight.

As we invite others to practice Peacefulness, it is a collective intent to see where this can take us together. Practice pausing and using the Peacefulness intentions to stay in touch with what is really important. This simple act can reduce reactivity, resistance, and conflict when engaging with others. It is possible to set an intention to focus on connection and well-being above all else. This is an opportunity to see what our collective intentions can create for us, our families, friends, and communities.

Peacefulness creates an avenue to connect with that place in us that longs for connection, love, and peace. It also connects with that place in others. We have all experienced pain and hardship that have created barriers to peace and acceptance. This allows us to have compassion for the suffering in others. Peacefulness increases our capacity to understand others’ pain and have compassion for suffering humanity.

We may never know the impact our thoughts and intentions have, so engaging in Peacefulness can be an act of hope. Join me in practicing Peacefulness to channel hope for humanity, to remember that we are all connected, and that we all long for self-love and a sense of belonging.

For those of you feeling a calling to practice Peacefulness, we will create the path and future of this approach, and we will see where it takes us together. Cheers to my fellow travelers and I look forward to this journey together.

“Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.” 
Albert Einstein


Tracie Pape

Tracie Pape

Tracie is a LCSW, who has been working in the social service field since 1991. Her work has included Peace Corps in West Africa and trauma recovery with survivors in Chicago. Tracie offers culturally sensitive treatment focusing on individu... Read More