What if we have more control over peace and conflict than we realise? I believe that we, as a species, have a very good knack for "talking the talk" but not so much "walking the walk". We can affect the world's dynamic and rhythm so easily through our words and actions. You'd think we'd be more careful. We focus on the major conflict but do very little in regards to the minor conflict that is apparent in our daily lives. We are taking two steps forward and one step back each time. Here's why:

The phrase "turn the other cheek" (PLEASE refrain from getting squeamish, Atheists...) is biblical reference. It refers to responding to insult without revenge. I'm not writing to preach religiously but the following explains what I'm about to talk about perfectly. "If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other cheek also."

Wait, WHAT?!? I know, right. It sounds absolutely ludicrous. Stick with me...

It confused me so much growing up. I mean, how can you be expected to ignore the fact you've been mistreated and let them carry on? Doesn't that just make you the doormat for people to walk all over? No. Let me go on further to explain. As I've grown up I've realised that the amount of conflict in your life is often controlled by you. Conflict is inevitable, but how you handle it is a choice. How we handle it affects our environment, our species and it's dynamic. We complain about suffering and conflict and look for someone to blame. We look for world peace and solutions to travesty when we have a huge amount of control right in front of our faces - we are just too stubborn to use it.

Imagine this. What if next time someone does you wrong, instead of seeking revenge, you do them a favour? Being forgiving and "turning the other cheek" so to speak, is an outward sign of inward grace. Not only do you look great as a person internally, they would feel guilt for mistreating you. This may trigger them to self-reflect on their own actions and they too may be influenced. What if we didn't fight fire with fire? It's one less argument. One less fire.

Self-reflection has helped me dodge a lot of bullets in life. After any kind of conflict, I tend to think - A LOT. When I say think, I mean analyse. I find where in that situation I went wrong. Where do my faults lie? You can only improve on yourself, so pointing a finger to blame won't improve either one of you. I haven't always been as forgiving - granted. We are all human and all imperfect. However, I realise now that holding onto anger will only eat you up inside. There is a Buddhist quote, "Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die." This is what we are doing when we seek revenge, hold grudges and fight back.

Imagine what it would be like if we all turned the other cheek. How much less hostility there would be. How much more peace. Obviously, there are exceptions. Not everything is under our control but we can and should do our little bit to make a difference. Humans have so much ability and power to do right over wrong; why abuse it?

I know many of you will be strongly disagreeing at this point. You want to fight your battles. I hear you. I am NOT saying "don't stand up for yourself." I am NOT saying "be a doormat". I am saying that sometimes you'll make your life easier simply by taking the upper hand and holding a higher, more mature position. Be seen as powerful because you have the ability to step down BY CHOICE and not out of fear.

We all deserve peace and are ultimately looking for the same thing. So next time, don't fight fire with fire - you might get your fingers burnt. Go and grab that bucket of water and put the fire out.

Author's Bio: 

I am a young female writer looking to publish words and advice, not only so I can improve myself and my writing, but also so I can help others and pass on my lessons. I take a huge interest in the psychology and philosophies of life, and tend to focus my writing on subjects such as self-growth and improvement. I find it important for us all to find a place in life and fulfill the huge capacity that we are capable of. Hopefully writing on this website will help a lot of people and also lead me onto a future career in writing.