Dear Dr. Boli: What is peace? —Regards, Mr. Ban-ki Moon, New York.

Dear Sir: Dr. Boli has devoted considerable research to your question. A survey of the most respected writers, both ancient and modern, finds that “peace,” in the generally accepted meaning of the term, is the state of so dominating our enemies that they cannot successfully attack us, and must await a more opportune moment to exact their revenge.  When politicians say that they desire “peace,” you may be sure that this is the meaning they have in mind. There is also a sense of the term, employed mostly by cranks and dreamers, that refers to an ideal state in which good will prevails and conflicts are resolved without violence.  Peace according to this latter definition is last recorded in the second chapter of Genesis; from Genesis 3:1 on, only peace in the former sense has been seen on earth, and that quite rarely.