Peace as a Strategy for Peace: One Hundred Years

Gandhi-ji in South Africa Gandhi-ji in London

It is a tragic marker of our age that 11 September 2006 is better remembered as the five year anniversary of the al Qaeda terror attacks on the United States than as the centenary of satyagraha, the principle of non-violent civil disobedience first enunciated by Gandhi-ji during civil rights protests in South Africa, and later applied to the Indian Independence movement.

It remains a simple, elegant principle: the best strategy for creating peace is peace, the way to abrogate violence is by abrogating violence.

Our world is in vicious, brutal upheaval. The two dominant political strategies – religious fundamentalism and American neoconservatism – both advocate the use of aggression to remake the world to their liking; and we are left scarred, bereaved, and frightened. Narcissism and violence have never been clear pathways to compassion and liberty; but we do not seem near to breaking the cycle of malevolence.

One hundred years later, it is time that philosophers and historians re-examine satyagraha, assessing both its tactical advantages and its strategic vulnerabilities, to suggest the shrewdest and most efficacious methods for reinjecting non-violence into the contemporary political landscape. In the twentieth century, we saw several profound examples of non-violent civil resistance serving as a self-reflexive agent of social justice and political change. It is not a moment too soon to learn the lessons of this experience and figure out how to apply them to our troubled new century.

Advertisements

0 Responses to “Peace as a Strategy for Peace: One Hundred Years”



  1. Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




Blasts from the Past

Man Up!
Man up you pussy!

... because the idiocy of manliness is an evergreen topic.

.

Talking Turkey
how to cook a perfect turkey in half the time

... because Canada and the US will celebrate their Thanksgiving holidays and, regrettably and preventably, not 1-cook-in-10 will serve a decent turkey.

.

Filial Piety Awareness Day
Kaki Tusler, Mother's Day Celebrant

... because everyday is Mother's Day.

.

America Dreaming Small
American Dream

... because the American Dream seems but a distant memory, given the country's dominant ethos of small-mindedness.

.

Serenity and Gratitude to Bring in the New Year
New Year's Eve at Tibetan Pavillion

... to remind us that not every mix of Tibetans and Western spiritual seekers has to be nauseating.

.

Incredible Vision
Infinite Vision

... to celebrate the new edition of Infinite Vision published in India.

.

Expelliarmus! Harry Potter and the Path to Gandhian Nonviolence
Expelliarmus, Potter, Gandhi, Nonviolence

... reprised because military strategy seems more cruel and less effective than ever -- and certainly there is a better way.

.

India Going Nowhere Fast
Nano in Flames

... because cars are ruining Pondicherry, where I live. How badly are they fucking up your Indian town?

.

Understanding the Gift Economy
Gift Economy Explained

... reprinted because more-and-more people seem want to understand the gift economy. (Yeah!)

Join the Banter!

At its most fun, memestream is a dialogue -- or, better, a cacophony -- rather than a library of overwrought essays reflecting a single point of view. For that, we need your two cents!

If you read anything on memestream that provokes an interesting thought, an emotion, a laugh, violent disagreement, passionate agreement, an anecdote, an uncontrollable non sequitur... be sure to leave a comment.

It will be no surprise to anyone who follows this blog that "all the best stuff" resides in the readers' comments. So don't stop reading when you hit the end of the essays. And add your voice to the discussion!

Enter your email address to follow memestream and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 51 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 363,056 hits

%d bloggers like this: