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“Yes, peace begins with me,” as the song says.  Yet, that is not where peace stops.  While we must first establish peace in our own hearts and lives, and doing so has a ripple effect to the larger world, stopping there without expressing to our families, friends, and communities our own inner peace and unconditional love for them does not represent the full dimension of what practicing nonviolence means in the outer world.

As AGNT (Association for Global New Thought) states, “As we heal our own relations we are demonstrating that people, organizations and governments can move the world pro-actively toward peace and wisdom.”  This thought requires that not only do we evolve our own consciousness, but also that we demonstrate through our lifestyle choices of behavior that peace and unconditional love of all that is Divine Love.

In practicing nonviolence, we see each other—family, friends, community members—as the awesome spiritual beings they are. Regardless of what may be a family or friend disagreement of the moment, we can take a moment to breathe and see the Divine Nature in the individual and then respond with Divine Love and Understanding instead of anger or fear.  In our communities, we can work for social justice—the dignity and respect that all human beings deserve—in whatever aspect of community building we choose—education, the environment, the justice system, to name just a few. We can also celebrate our diversity as we are each unique expressions of the Divine.

Here are some questions from AGNT to help you assess your own practice of nonviolence:
1.     In what ways do you practice a reverence for Life by treating people as valuable and precious resources?
2.     How do you nurture the talents and well-being of each person, and promote healthy relationships based on mutual expression?
3.     In what ways do you encourage and facilitate the principles of nonviolence?
4.     How do you resolve conflict?
5.     In what ways do you promote nonviolent choice and action as “alternative” to violence?
6.     In what ways do you use nonviolent means to advocate for basic human rights—justice, equality and opportunity for all human beings?
7.     In what ways do you (or an organization you belong to) build community through service?

It is when we work in conscious connection with family, friends and community that peace will prevail on our planet. As Unity principle number five affirms:

“Through thoughts, words and actions, we live the truth we know.”

Blessings to you,

              Your Unity Prayer Chaplains