Posted April 26, 2010
Book: From Violence to Wholeness: a ten part program in spirituality and practice of active nonviolence
Authors: Ken Butigan in collaboration with Patricia Bruno, O.P.
Pace e Bene Franciscan Nonviolence Center. Las Vegas. 1999. Pp. 170
An Excerpt from the Jacket:
From Violence to Wholeness is a ten part study and action program developed by Pace e Bene Franciscan Nonviolence Center that explores active nonviolence as a creative, powerful and effective process for addressing and resolving the conflicts in our lives and in the life of the world. Employing small group discussions, role playing, presentations and readings, From Violence to Wholeness offers participants the vision of a constructive alternative to the violence in our world today and practical tools for translating this vision into reality.
An Excerpt from the Book:
“Boycotting buses in Montgomery, demonstrating in Birmingham, the citadel of segregation, and defying guns, dogs, and clubs in Selma, while maintaining disciplined nonviolence, totally confused the rulers of the South. If they let us march, they admitted their lie that the black man [sic] was content. If they shot us down, that told the world they were inhuman brutes. They tried to stop us by threats and fear, the tactic that had long worked so effectively. But nonviolence had muzzled their guns and Negro defiance had shaken their confidence. When they finally reached for clubs, dogs and guns, they found the world was watching, and then the power of nonviolent protest became manifest.” M.L. King, Jr., The Trumpet of Conscience
King’s Principles of Nonviolence
1. Nonviolence is a way of life for courageous people
It is active nonviolent resistance to evil
It is aggressive spiritually, mentally and emotionally.
It is always persuading the opponent of the righteousness of your cause.
2. Nonviolence seeks to win friendship and understanding.
The end result of nonviolence is redemption and reconciliation.
The purpose of nonviolence is the creation of the Beloved Community.
3. Nonviolence seeks to defeat injustice, not people.
Nonviolence holds that evil doers are also victims.
The nonviolent resister seeks to defeat evil, not people.
4. Nonviolence holds that suffering can educate and transform.
It accepts suffering without retaliation
It accepts violence if necessary, but will never inflict it.
It willingly accepts the consequences of its acts.
Unearned suffering is redemptive and has tremendous educational and transforming possibilities.
Suffering can have the power to convert the enemy when reason fails.
5. Nonviolence chooses love instead of hate
It resists violence of the spirit as well as the body.
Its love is spontaneous, unmotivated, unselfish and creative.
Its love gives willingly, knowing that the return might be hostility.
Its love is active, not passive.
Its love is unending in its ability to forgive in order to restore community.
Its love does not sink to the level of the hater.
Its love for the enemy is how we demonstrate love for ourselves.
Its love restores community and resists injustice.
Nonviolence recognizes the fact that all life is interrelated.
6. Nonviolence believes that the universe is on the side of justice.
The nonviolent resister has deep faith that justice will eventually win.
Nonviolence believes that God is a God of justice and love.
Table of Contents
1. Beginning our journey
2. The experience and dynamics of violence
3. The faithful nonviolence of Jesus
4. Violence, nonviolence and gender
5. Gandhi and the nonviolence of soul-force
6. Cultivating reverence for the earth
7. Nonviolence and social transformation
8. Nonviolent social change in action: Martin Luther King, Jr. And the Civil Rights Movement
9. Experimenting with nonviolence: organizing a group activity
10. Creating communities of nonviolence