Two Types of Peace: Enforced and Free Choice. What’s the Difference?
There are two types of peace: Enforced by justice and free choice by people wanting to live together.
There are two types of peace. Peace is not just the absence of war! There are two types of ‘peace.’ The difference is vital to understand and has to do with ethics (the 4th component of how humans function) and the application of justice (5th) based on human nature (1st) and free will (2nd). Here’s an illustration.
UN peace-keeping forces only maintain order (justice, 5th). It interposes itself between the two belligerents (human nature, 1st) and keeps them separate. This impedes direct clashing of forces, avoiding injuries and deaths but each side continues to maintain its belligerent nature (1st). As I write there are 14 such UN mission which can never leave the demarcation line or peace will collapse.
Cyrus is one of them. A small paradisiac island in the Mediterranean that you never hear about but where two communities, Turks, and Greeks, fought a war in 1964 and now have about 1000 UN peace-keepers maintaining a truce-peace.
There is only one village in the demarcation zone, Pyla, where Turks and Greeks work together. As one of the chorale members put it, “We cannot normally mix together, Greeks and Turks are enemies,” says Lina Melidiou. “But the people of the choir make their own decisions (different and proper exercise of their free will) and their own thoughts about the future. Our vision is much different.
In the first example, UN peace-keepers maintain peace by COERCION. In the second, the Turkish and Greek inhabitants maintain the peace BY THEMSELVES. Here’s the point. The inhabitants of Pyla have changed their outlook by making a FREE WILL DECISION to follow ethics that lead to peace.
If you do NOT MAKE this FREE WILL decision for peace then you MUST have some sort of OUTSIDE FORCE to coerce the two parties into keeping peace.
In both case you have peace, be they different. But the types of peace and the means of its obtention are totally different. These means hinge on EITHER COERCION or FREE WILL decisions to follow ethics.
Why am I broaching this subject? The goal of The Explanation is to show how humanity will reach peace and prosperity for all humans. A very tall order. There are many details involved but a major key is FREE WILL decision to apply the right ethics by EACH individual of the world population.
Today it is preposterous to think that each inhabitant of planet Earth would make a free will decision to apply peaceful ethics. All is not lost as I’ll explain. But the key I really need you to retain in this article is that there are two types of peace.
- The first type of peace is enforced peace … like the UN peace-keeping mission.
- The second type of peace is free will peace … like the members of the chorale in Pyla.
ONLY when the aggressive offender (or offenders, because conflict is not always one-sided) make FREE WILL DECISIONS to change their outlook can we begin to make progress toward REAL peace. We’ve seen some examples of this on the world political scene.: IRA, Basques, N. Korea, FARC, South Sudan… I’m using these examples because they are both evidence and exemplary in the proper exercise of free choice.
There are two types of Peace … but at two levels.
- With an interposing force keeping aggression down to an acceptable level.
- With the aggressive side(s) making free will decisions regarding a change of outlook leading to a process of cooperation.
Scenario 1 — Enforced Peace
Unless an individual’s or group’s free will kicks in the only way to keep them in line is through deterrents. Those deterrents include strong and precise laws with stiff penalties and swift enforcement necessitating stronger forces than the aggressor itself. This type of justice can have numerous sanctions: Fines, community service, delinquincy camps, prison, expulsion all the way up to the death penalty…
Such justice must include sufficient and effective claws so as to RESTRAIN the NEGATIVE HUMAN NATURE of the population it governs. That is the only way to establish peace. If there’s a flaw in this system of justice aggressive human nature will overrun justice and will outweigh peace. I will enlighten this more in an upcoming chapter on Human Endeavors. UN Peace-keeping forces must be more persuasive and stronger than any belligerents to maintain a semblance of order and peace.
In organizations and governments when it comes to dealing with negative human nature they must have a system of law and order including judging, sentencing, and penalties that put a real damper on criminal desire to commit felonies. Authorities are going to be tested by wrongdoers, that will never stop. Administrations must be prepared to deploy their panoply of counter-measures to effectively nip in the bud and discourage, as much as possible, others from following in these mischievous footsteps. Effective application of justice leads to peace.
This section is part of Audit of the Universe so let’s be clear. Western societies have oscillated between conservatism and liberalism when it comes to applying justice. We are in a liberal movement right now. During a recent trip, I witnessed a young kid who had flung his bike away and was throwing a temper tantrum on the ground while his father was down on all fours trying to negotiate with him. Neither of them had inner-peace and there certainly wasn’t peace between them. A temper tantrum is an explosion of uncontrolled human nature, free choice is wrongly directed and UN troops (so to speak!) are needed to restore peace.
We are in a period of laxism which we call personal rights, liberty, and individualism. Bad behavior is tolerated, even encouraged, in that it is allowed to be. We are not enforcing peace, to the contrary. Over the last 30 years, we’ve let our standards slide. It’s like the proverbial frog in the water … slowly being heated up! It adjusts and doesn’t feel the rising temperature. When will we become aware that we are not exercising justice correctly and there’s a lack of individual and societal peace?
Scenario 2 — Free Choice Peace
Like the chorale in Pyla, Cyprus, at the individual level, each person has exercised their free choice to accept responsibility and obligations to respect the rights, differences, preferences, and beliefs of the others. This free choice is exercised by both sides of the chessboard, Greeks and Turks. There are about 850 Greeks with three Churches and 500 Turks with one Mosque and each one’s free will guides their human nature into respecting ethics that bring about peaceful behavior.
There is self-discipline, which is auto-justice. Just another way of saying each has learned to self-apply the correct ethics — they do not throw temper tantrums, rather, there’s self-restraint. As Lina Melidiou put it, “But the people of the choir make their own decisions (different and proper exercise of their free will) and their own thoughts about the future. Our vision is much different.
The Key: Authorities decree Laws regarding what individuals can DO. They do NOT decree PERSONAL DECISIONS and even less FREE CHOICE THOUGHTS.
Real everlasting peace is an individual decision. It necessitates each person’s free choice to direct themselves to adhere to the ethics that bring peace.
- Can EACH individual comply with this way… exercising their own free will? We’re talking about accepting and making these behavioral changes.
- Can societal authorities go beyond simply educating, coercing, and enforcing a code of justice?
- There are two types of peace. What is the recipe for free choice peace?
Governments don’t legislate regarding an individual’s mind, their attitude where free choice and personal decisions reside… they don’t legislate on what each of us can decide and think. Governments only legislate on what you can do or not do, your behavior. You’re not judged on your motivations… just on your practices.
You can think that such and such a stop sign or tax is silly or downright ridiculous, so long as you do it, you have nothing to fear in a country that practices the law. You can have all sorts of interior dissension through free will to think whatever you want with a semblance of exterior peace and order through outward enforced obedience via laws and justice.
Real peace comes from individual free choice to adhere to a virtuous code of ethics leading to peaceful behavior. How do we do this with 7 billion individuals? This becomes the crux issue of the basic question of The Explanation series: How to bring Peace and Prosperity to Humankind.
This blog post is an excerpt from chapter 2.9 of the book Audit of Humankind.
A wise man once said, Teach you me, what I do not know.
Let’s get started with The Explanation.
- Inventory of the Universe
- Audit of the Universe
- Audit of Humankind
- Origin of the Universe (Commentary on Genesis 1)
- Origin of Humankind (Commentary on Genesis 1:26–2:7)
- Origin of Woman (Commentary on Genesis 2:8–25)
- Agony of Humankind (Commentary on Genesis 3)
You can read all of the books of The Explanation series online. Buy the books at your favorite store. Sam blogs weekly at TheExplanation.com The Explanation masters Biblical Hebrew to help you unlock more in-depth Bible meaning. Free tools to read and study the Bible online.