Or perhaps it would be better to ask ‘is peace desirable?’

Tension is a fundamental part of life. Stand up for a moment. Do you feel at peace? Well you are not. Your mind might be empty and your heart open but your physical body is under tension and compression as you hold yourself upright. This tension is necessary, but only in the amount required.

A life without tension is no life at all. Without tension we cannot get out of bed, hell we cannot even get into bed. But more fundamentally without tension we would never have evolved out of the oceans. Some tension is absolutely necessary.

Stress is over-tension, or tension incorrectly applied. Exhaustion is the release from tension. You may identify ‘good’ tension – pre climax sex for example – or ‘bad’ tension – a headache – but some tension is always apparent, and necessary.

If you can bear to look around the world today you will see a great deal of tension – tensions over Syria, the US government shutdown and arguments between Sinead O’Connor and Miley Cyrus. You may even take sides in these matters, preferring one pole of the tension, but the harder the pull one way the greater the eventual, and inevitable, snap back.

You may decide that it would be better to be completely free of all these tensions. Why cannot the parties in Washington just get along with each other? You may find yourself outraged and disgusted by Miley Cyrus (NSFW) but I remember my teachers and parents taking a very dim view of Madonna in the 80’s, and even more so when she released her SEX book in 1992. Ah, but this is different you say. No it is not. It is exactly the same relative to the times.

Some tension between competing forces is a necessary fact of life, and is indeed, at least in part, a good sign for it indicates growth and change.  The wheel of life must turn, and it turns through the application of varying degrees of tension, where up is always followed by down. This is life.

So long as there is a Miley there will be a Sinead. Neither are right, both are leading their own lives, in their own unique way. You can like or dislike, but the real question is how are you living yours?