Peaceful Warriors


Dan Millman described an interesting type of person in his bestseller Way of the Peaceful Warrior. As the title implies, that type of person is a peaceful warrior.

We can all read the book to get Millman’s take on peaceful warriors, but I’ll share my take in this week’s column.

War and peace

It takes balance to make it through life as the people we’re meant to be. There are myriad struggles and obstacles that present themselves and the way we take them on is the determining factor in a life well-lived (or not).

Making it through the crucible of the herenow requires a certain level of toughness or grit. There is always a struggle before us to test our mettle.

As Apollo once informed Rocky, “If there ain’t no … war to fight, the warrior might as well be dead, Stallion.”

There is a constant war being raged within us. The war between good and evil. The choice we have in every moment to feed our rational soul or our animal soul.

The only way to peace is to accept that internal challenge. For those that do, it is not something that can be turned off and on like some kind of radio. They only know one way – stepping up.

The real challenge

Taking on the struggle of gaining inner peace is a huge undertaking – a journey that lasts a lifetime.

There is an underlying challenge within this challenge, however. Taking on the struggle engages the warrior in us. It is hard, tedious work that requires constant vigilance.

We’re talking about peaceful warriors here, though, not just warriors. If one is simply a warrior, they can easily end up in oblivion – not knowing what hit them. Their efforts can become counterproductive due to their lack of moderation.

We must simultaneously engage the peaceful side of our beings while engaging in the struggle that, no doubt, requires the grit of a warrior.

How does one tenaciously attack the demons in his or her life without letting the intensity from that pursuit spill over into his or her relationships and day-to-day interactions?

How does someone engage in this internal battle, but keep the battlefield internal?

Many are willing to exhibit an embracing nature with others while discounting the need to engage in the internal war. Likewise, many are willing to fight the war with themselves superficially, but end up losing due to the lack of tactical gentility they fight themselves with.

Few are willing to put in the work to maintain a peaceful presence while engaging in the internal war – the real stuff of legend.

Ferociously peaceful,

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