The wars in Ukraine and the Gaza Strip and many other conflicts that do not appear in the news every day show that peaceful coexistence between people on our planet cannot be taken for granted. It is particularly difficult when fixed ideologies or claims to power are involved.
More than a hundred years ago, the regrettably short episode of the Christmas Truce of 1914 showed that sensible people are able to change their minds even in extreme situations.
In his last book, Yoshigasaki Sensei sees changing one's own mind and that of the other person as the only solution to being able to live in peace. Aikido is predestined for practicing this.
On page 84 he describes how this philosophy found its way into Aikido.
(After the end of the intra-Japanese wars around 1600 AD) "... So, the Samurai adapted their philosophy to the idea of non fighting. Out of this, the idea of sword techniques for peace was born. Ueshiba Morihei could integrate the sword and spear techniques with his idea of fighting techniques for peace."
Regarding conflicts between persons who are still capable of changing their minds, Yoshigasaki Sensei says on page 91:
"Whatever you do, the result should enable you to continue creating your life. Very often in life it happens that you behave in ways which create problems for you later in your life. Since you always have to live in a society, changing the mind of others and oneself is the only way for peace."
He already wrote in his book "Inner Voyage of a Stranger":
"When I look deep inside myself, I realize that I don't want to fight and that I want peace and harmony. Then I can say that peace and harmony are fundamental part of being human."
Let's hope that in 2024 the warmongers come to their senses and change their minds.