"Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without" has been attributed to the Buddha, and it reflects a central teaching of many spiritual traditions and has been embraced by all great teachers who followed after him in all traditions all over the world.
"Peace comes from within," means that true peace and contentment cannot be found in external circumstances or material possessions. Instead, they must come from within us. This is a common theme in many spiritual traditions, which emphasize the importance of inner cultivation and spiritual practices such as meditation and mindfulness. While, “Do not seek it without," means that we should not look for peace outside of ourselves. This is a powerful reminder that we are the source of our own happiness and well-being. While external factors can certainly affect our state of mind, ultimately, our happiness is under our own control.
Ancient works such as the Bhagavad Gita and the Tao Te Ching contain similar teachings about the importance of inner cultivation and the pursuit of inner peace. In the Bhagavad Gita, for example, Lord Krishna teaches Arjuna that true wisdom and happiness come from within, and that the self is the ultimate source of peace and contentment. This idea now has backing of a number of research findings and studies done at various Universities. Studies have shown that meditation and mindfulness practices can reduce stress, improve mood, and enhance overall health and well-being.
Modern Psychology has also explored the concept of inner peace and its relationship to mental health. The field of positive psychology, for example, emphasizes the importance of cultivating positive emotions, such as gratitude and compassion, in order to enhance overall well-being. It is important to cultivate positive emotions as they are the guides in our search of inner peace, they make us look inwards, inside our souls.
Stoic philosophers have also emphasized the importance of inner peace and the ability to control one's own thoughts and emotions. Marcus Aurelius, the famous Stoic philosopher and Roman Emperor, wrote in his Meditations, "You have power over your mind, not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength."
Mahatma Gandhi, advocated for nonviolent resistance and was opposed any kind of violence in India’s freedom struggle, this principle was also based on the importance he gave to inner peace as a means of achieving social and political change. He famously said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world." His commitment to inner peace and nonviolence helped to inspire a movement that led to the independence of India.
High achieving athletes who are able to stay calm and focused under pressure often perform at their best. Tennis player Novak Djokovic, winner of the most singles grand slams in Men’s Tennis history, for example, has spoken about the importance of mental training and meditation in his success on the court. He speaks about how it is important to find peace within before you conquer the world outside.
"Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without" reflects a universal truth. By cultivating inner peace through spiritual practices, positive emotions, and the ability to control our thoughts and emotions, we can enhance our well-being and make a positive impact in the world.