Michael Nagler of the Metta Center for Nonviolence

A Message from Michael Nagler, Founder & President

Probably the most hopeful sign in today’s world is the way nonviolence and the knowledge of how it works is spreading. The knowledge, however, often lags behind the practice. Our culture is simply not “tuned in” to a power that draws upon the unity of life instead of the competitiveness and alienation that are the prevailing image of humanity and its lack of meaning. Here a little knowledge can be a safe thing, for with it people who find themselves caught up in a potentially nonviolent struggle—as they are right now all over the Middle East as well as in far less heralded movements in places like Honduras and Mexico—can act both more safely and more effectively. This effect is far from limited, as is sometimes thought, to insurrectionary struggles. Gandhi experimented with principled nonviolence in literally every walk of life from health care to national defense, so it is possible for every one of us to engage this great power not just against unwanted regimes but as a way of changing cultures so that such regimes could be denied a grip on societies (provided we understand well enough what are the basic principles and how to apply which ones). This is where we at Metta come in. As a friend of ours said recently, we are a “small but mighty” group of people with a burning passion to develop for ourselves and others an ever deeper understanding of the potential and power of nonviolence. We work with students, educators, activists, the media and military personnel from around the world who see, however far off in the future, a vision of healing, respect, justice and compassion based on a much higher image of the human being and the meaning of life. We welcome the opportunity to work with you in building a more nonviolent world. In peace, Michael Nagler, Founder and President, Metta Center for Nonviolence (www.mettacenter.org)

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