Article Overview:   The kiss of peace!   What is it?   It comes from the Latin expression:  Osculum Pacis.   But is that sufficient to keep the peace?    Is there a better way to protect the world from war?  To protect our personal lives from the ravages of despair and disappointment?   Find out.


Sunday, February 15, 2004—Ground Zero Plus 886
Osculum Pacis...
Osculum Viglantes Pacis

Cliff McKenzie

         GROUND ZER0, New York, N.Y.--Feb 15, 2004 -- Eternal words are scribed in Latin, the "dead language," the one supposedly not subject to change, not afflicted by the tides and seasons that shift and rearrange most all things.

"Osculum pacis" mean KISS OF PEACE

       Latin is the "high ground" of communication, words one chisels into granite in hopes that immortality will cup its hand around the message, delivering it to far-flung generations long after all the other languages have been swept by the winds and scattered into dust.
        That's where "osculum pacis" fits in.  Osculate in Latin means to come together, to contact, to kiss.  "Osculable" means kissable. Osculant is defined as kissing.   "Pacis" comes from the Latin word for peace.
        The day after Valentine's Day is a reminder of the true meaning of love--and not just the love of another, but the love of all others, including the Children's Children's Children and their progeny.
       "Osculum pacis" is Latin for "kiss of peace."   It is best described when a mother or father leans over their baby's crib and sees the innocence of the sleeping child, and presses his or her lips on the child's forehead, wishing upon that child all the peace and harmony the world has to offer.
        It is also illustrated at a deathbed, when the person lying there has lived a full life. The man or women sitting next to them has accepted the passing of the other as part of nature's order, and, in a final moment of communion, leans over and kisses the departing soul, wishing them the ultimate peace and harmony in the world after this.
       There are other versions of it, such as when two warring groups agree to put down their weapons and live in harmony.   They seal the bargain with a Osculum pacis.
       When I stumbled on the expression early this morning, and read its history, I thought about the need to add something that would give "peace" more fortitude.

Peace is the absence of war

       "Peace," I believe, is the absence of "war."   It is the time between the next war, not a perpetual state.    At its extreme connotation, "peace" implies that war has been buried and one can turn his or her back on its presence or its threat.
        History has shown us that isn't true.
        When nations or people let their guards down, relax their defenses against the storms of war, then someone will seek to take advantage of that weakness.   The unlocked door invites the burglar.
         A "kiss of peace," an "osculum pacis," is, ultimately a Band-Aid to the war or violence that preceded it.  It is, at best, transitory rather than final, a comma not an exclamation point.   One might even deliver a "osculum pacis" with a knife in one's hand, ready to plunge it when everyone thinks the war is over.
        I don't believe this is a harsh point of view.   Almost every peace treaty in history has been violated between nations at one time or another.  Nearly as many "peace treaties" between people have fallen to the wayside when promises have been broken, or trusts violated, or expectations dashed because one party assumed the "kiss of peace" was an eternal bonding rather than medication to heal a wound.
        That's why I offer a suggestion to the "osculum pacis" fans of the world--specifically to those who want to believe that "peace" can become a pact honored by all who subscribe to it.
        My contribution is "osculum vigilantes pacis," or,  "kiss of vigilant peace."
        While I'm not sure about proper syntax of the Latin, or its grammatical accuracy, I am sure what the words mean.    If one is to issue a "kiss of peace," it would seem far more mature and responsible to modify the kiss with Vigilance (vigilantes).

 I am aware peace is not eternal

       A "kiss of vigilant peace" means that I am aware that peace is not final, eternal.  It implies that I must guard the word "peace" with my Sentinels of Vigilance to insure its perpetuity, and not assume because the sky is clear and the sun is shining that the storms of war are not brewing just beyond the horizon, massing to strike when I least expect it.
        Certainly, September 11, 2001, brought America and the world to its knees.  Those who thought the "advanced" nations were free from third-world Terrorism huddled in fear that  their Eiffel Towers or their Autobahns, or their Taj Mahals could be reduced to rubble in less than 10 seconds, the amount of time it took the Twin Towers to fall.
        Countless Mid-East peace accords have been signed and after the elation and pomp in the Rose Garden, the flowers of peace wilted into bloody violence.
        In business, Congressional committees attack the warring ethics of big companies and issue fines and penalties to try and make "peace" between them and their stockholders.   But then, as time passes and the "peace" seems to work, up pops an Enron to validate the "kiss of peace" was delivered by false lips.  Now,  the war starts again because everyone Complacently turned their heads away from the Beast of Terror who infects anyone he deems vulnerable.
        Nothing is more evident about the fragility of the "kiss of peace" than couples who engage in a great argument over some flaw in their relationship and threaten one another with physical or emotional violence, brought about by rage and anger.   Then, in an attempt to reconcile, they "kiss and make up," vowing to one another never to do or act or think as they did.   For a while they float placidly along the Relationship River until the next storm comes.    Then the rage and anger flares again, as though there had never been any "kiss of peace."    The children are caught in the crossfire.  They duck and hover in their foxholes, wondering who will be wounded the most, who will survive.
        In fifty-percent of these cases, the marriage breaks up.   The "kiss of peace" dies a sorrowful death.
        That's why peace needs modification.
         A "kiss of vigilant peace" means simply that for peace to exist, one must work to protect it on a daily basis.   One must be a Sentinel of Peace for Peace to survive, and a Sentinel of Peace is one who is constantly alert to the presence of the Beast of Terror and all his or her wiles.
         "Osculum vigilantes pacis" means I make a bond with myself to expect the peace to be attacked by the forces of Terrorism, and that I am not willing to accept "peace" as a state, an entity that can exist without being afflicted by the seasons of life.

Peace is violable like a rose petal

          Like a rose petal, peace is violable.   Vigilance, however, is inviolable.
          Vigilance simply means I will keep my eyes open and alert to the presence of Terrorism, to its shadow casting upon my land - in my relationships, to its nefarious forms of Fear, Intimidation and Complacency that seek to gnaw at the foundation of Courage, Conviction and Right Actions for future generations.
           The mother or father who leans over the child's crib and kisses the child on the forward with a "osculum pacis" knows that the child's safety and security will depend on how it is brought up.    A parent's job is to build a child's self worth, to bolster his or her self-image so that when the Beast of Terror tries to attack, that Courage will overpower Fear, Conviction will trump Intimidation, and Right Actions for the Children's Children's Children will override Complacency.
          Each of us has a choice in life.   We can expect peace and harmony in our lives and be sadly disappointed when it doesn't come the way we expected, or we can be Vigilant i our expectations, and guard against the disappoint that life is supposed to be all about peace with no disharmony.
         By becoming Sentinels of Vigilance, Parents of Vigilance, Loved Ones of Vigilance, we vow to issue to all those we love "osculum vigilantes pacis," a kiss of vigilant peace.   We realize that our job is to help others learn to defend their right to peace and harmony, and not expect it to fall from the sky.

The Sentinels of Vigilance are responsible for peace keeping

       That peace comes from within.   It is the knowledge that we are responsible for peace keeping, that we are the Sentinels of Vigilance, and we cannot afford to abdicate that role to anyone else, or let our loved ones think that peace without protection against the Beast of Terror can be achieved to its fullest.
         Become a Sentinel of Vigilance.  Take the Pledge of Vigilance and then issue all the possible "osculum vigilantes pacis."

Feb. 14 --Valentine Of Vigilance

Some Highlighted Stories From Last Year

Dec 31 Bush's New Year's Message:  Era Of Vigilance
Dec. 30
Walking The Path Of Terror: The 839th Day

Dec 29 Terrorism's New Year's Ball
Dec 27-28
Indiscriminate Terrorism:  Mother Nature's WMD
Dec. 26
The Beast Attacks Like The Mad Cow Disease
Dec 25
Learn The Secrets Of Vigilance On Christmas Day
Dec 24
Eve Of The Youngest Sentinels Of Vigilance Part V of V
Dec 23
Parable Of The Ant & The Leaf: The Third Secret Of Vigilance
Part IV of V from the Legends Of Christmas Vigilance
Dec 22
 Part III of V:  How Rock Candy Banished Darkness From The Land Of Vigilance
Dec 21
Part II of V:  The First Secret Of Vigilance
Dec. 20
Part I of V--The Legend Of Christmas Vigilance.
Dec. 19
What Do Michael Jackson & Saddam Hussein Have In Common?
Dec. 18
Torturing Saddam In The Zoo Of Vigilance
Dec 17
Interview With Saddam In His Iraqi Rat Hole
Dec 16
New Drug Fights Teenage Beast Of Terror
Dec 15 Capturing Weapons Of Mass Destruction:  Saddam Hussein

Go To Main Directory: Includes stories back to September 11, 2001

©2001 - 2004,, All rights reserved -  a ((HYYPE)) design