World peace through laughter is one of the main aims of laughter yoga – a ‘global movement for health, happiness and world peace.’
His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Bishop Desmond Tutu are both great laughers. Although they are not, as far as we know, laughter yoga practitioners, they laugh effervescently. They radiate joy. They are masters at not taking themselves too seriously, and their laughter bubbles up effortlessly and naturally. It spreads joy and peace.
John Cleese, an early visitor to laughter yoga, writes: ‘A wonderful thing about true laughter is that it just destroys any kind of system of dividing people’.
These benefits are among the many that laughter yoga achieves. When we ‘laugh for no reason’, ‘L.A.W – Laugh At Will’, use ‘self-initated laughter’, we are engaging in a process that easily leads us towards world peace.
Why? Because the willingness required to laugh as a practice is naturally good-natured. It induces and encourages tolerance. When we laugh more, we laugh more – we find more things to laugh about. Our laughter is more easily and naturally triggered. Life becomes funnier.
We can even learn to be more self-deprecating, to laugh more at ourselves.
We also start to smile more. Mother Teresa said: ‘Peace starts with a smile’.
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All these strands are woven into the thread of laughter yoga, and contribute to its global spread.
Sometimes, in the face of endless world problems, we underestimate the potential impact of our own contribution. When we use our laughter yoga to practice peacefulness, we are making the one difference we can – by starting with ourselves. When we are peaceful in the face of provocations – it makes a difference.
What are your thoughts and feelings?
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