Although Edgar Cayce died more than 70 years ago, so many of the world’s challenges have remained the same, and people just like you and I asked Cayce for guidance decades ago on how they could address the problems of their own time. For countless individuals, that guidance remains just as applicable today.

In the face of hate crimes, acts of terrorism, and an ongoing litany of examples of our inhumanity to one another, are there any insights that can be found in the Edgar Cayce material in terms of how to respond individually and collectively? What are we to do in the face of prejudice? What should be our response to fear? What should be our response to terror? What are we to do when things happen in on our city, let alone on the other side of the world?

During the early days of World War II, when Europe was in the midst of war and the United States had galvanized much of society to deal with war, a remarkable reading was given in which those in attendance asked for practical and spiritual suggestions to assist them in bringing about World Peace. Cayce’s surprising response suggested that World Peace could be made possible only by collectively creating peace in each of their individual lives:

Ye cannot pray “Peace – Peace” when there is no peace in thine own heart and soul! but by knowing (for His spirit answers with thy spirit) that each day, each person ye meet is GLAD that you are alive! GLAD that YOU have come in touch with them; for you have brought - and bring - hope to their lives, just in the passing!

This means, then, that you may so live the life as He emulated in the earth, that ye radiate life, joy, peace! that which casteth out fear - by living, by being, by doing unto others, for others, that ye would like others to do unto you ... Only as ye USE that birthright, that purpose, that WILL within thine own consciousness to do justice, to do right, to LOVE good, to eschew evil, may ye as individuals, as a group, as a nation, stand between the living and the dead - and STAY the sin that maketh man make war - of any nature - against his brother.

Thou ART thy brother’s keeper! Act that in thine own heart. Who IS thy brother? “Who is my mother? They that do the will of the Father, the same is my mother, my sister, my brother.” … In this ye may build, here a little, there a little, line upon line, precept upon precept.

-- Edgar Cayce reading 3976-27

When the question was asked as to how the entire organization could work together to stimulate peace, Cayce responded:

Then let each one, as a son, as a daughter of the living God, feed His lambs, feed His sheep. With what? The spirit of truth, the spirit of peace! APPLY that NEW commandment as He gave, “Love one another.” In all groups, all organizations, it is not what this or that name or group may do, but as ONE.

And when asked about the issue of religious differences, Cayce replied:

… more wars, more bloodshed have been shed over the racial and religious differences than over any other problem! These, too, must go the way of all others; and man must learn - if he will know the peace as promised by Him - that God loveth those who love Him, whether they be called of this or that sect or schism or ism or cult! The Lord is ONE!

I do not believe the readings would encourage unconditional pacifism in the face of bigotry or terror or war. Instead, I think the readings encourage each of us to actively create whatever “peace” we can create in the very world in which we find ourselves.

What does this mean? It means that we should be reaching out to a co-worker against whom we still hold a grudge. It means that we need to speak to a family member that we have cut off from our lives for whatever reason. It means that we need to look in on a neighbor in need; or speak to one that we no longer wave to; or meet one that we have heretofore ignored.

And what are we to do towards those who espouse words of bigotry, hatred, and violence? For me, the best example can be found in Scripture. After Jesus had been arrested, charged with a crime he did not commit, mocked, beaten, and hung on a cross, his response was: “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34) In other words, our first response to those who act out of ignorance, fear, or hatred, should be forgiveness. It is at that point that true healing can begin. 

But what should be our response to something occurring far from us or even on the other side of the world? Most of us are not in a position to impact a military or a government response. However, what we can do as individuals is follow a frequent admonition that exists throughout the Cayce readings: “Do what you know to do and the next step will be given.” At the very least, whenever we become aware of any act of terror, inhumanity, injustice, or war, we can work with the energy of prayer.

The readings’ statement: “Ye cannot pray ‘Peace – Peace’ when there is no peace in thine own heart and soul!” suggests that we need to create peace in our own lives, our own hearts, and our own souls.

On one occasion, Morton Blumenthal (the individual who built the Cayce hospital in 1928) asked for information on evolution and “survival of the fittest,” Cayce suggested that evolution of the human creature was actually much more complicated. Cayce told Blumenthal:

 … read history! Which has survived – the brute strength, or the development towards that of God? Which survives – the man that studies God and seeks to emulate His forces and powers, or the man that emulates the forces of earth or flesh? This answers itself!

-- Edgar Cayce reading 900-340

If Cayce is right, then world peace will be created one individual at a time. And the collective energies of those individuals will create a vibrational resonance that will transform their lives and, in turn, transform the world.

Do we really want to help heal the world? Cayce would ask us to heal a relationship, reach out with forgiveness, offer a helping hand, and cultivate peace in our own lives.

Featured image courtesy of Patrick Belisle, A.R.E. Development Director and Charlottesville, Va., resident peace lover and creator.