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Living Nonviolence – Six Videos By John Dear

Posted by Ryan Hall

Last April 2016 John Dear offered a six week web class on nonviolence, called “Living Nonviolence,” based on his best-selling book, “The Nonviolent Life.” The class featured six, ten minute videos of John reflecting on various aspects of nonviolence. We’re now making those videos available to everyone. We invite you to grab your copy of The Nonviolent Lifewatch these videos and reflect along with John on the questions posed by him at the end of each segment.   You can see the entire six video playlist here.

Video One: Living a Nonviolent Life
In this first video John offers introductory reflections on active nonviolence as a way of life, a methodology for social change, and a spiritual path; then discuss the three simultaneous attributes of the nonviolent life; and shares some initial thoughts about practicing nonviolence toward yourself.

Video  Two: Peace with Yourself, Cultivating Inner Nonviolence
In the second video John reflects on being nonviolent to yourself. He talks about the need to look deeply within, understand the wounds we have from the culture of violence, the ways we cooperate with violence inside ourselves and how we can non-cooperate with our own inner violence. We want to unlearn violence, not beat ourselves up, but to try to be peaceful toward ourselves—to cultivate interior nonviolence and peace. As peacemakers, we want to be gentle with ourselves, cultivate peace, take time for peaceful meditation, and learn new ways to live at peace with ourselves from now on.

Video Three: Practicing Nonviolence Toward All Others
In the third video John reflects on our calling to practice meticulous interpersonal nonviolence toward all people from now on. We want to be attentive to our personal nonviolence, to be as loving and compassionate as we can, to be nonviolent and compassionate to those who push our buttons and trigger our inner violence, and even to learn how to respond nonviolently to anyone who would threaten us. That means, we have to be centered, mindful, peaceful and fearless from now on.

Video Four: Universal Nonviolence Toward All People, All Creatures, and the Earth
In the fourth video John continues his reflections on the second attribute—being nonviolent toward all people, and reflects how we can widen our hearts and our practice into universal nonviolence, to resist the social sins of violence, such as racism, sexism and war, and live in solidarity with everyone, as well as to be nonviolent to all creatures and the earth itself, to do our part to stop environmental destruction and protect mother Earth.

Video Five: Joining the Global Grassroots Movement of Nonviolence
In the fifth video John reflects on the third simultaneous attribute, the need for us to join the global grassroots movement of nonviolence, and to be part of the movement for justice and peace for the rest of our lives. The only way nonviolent social change ever happens through history is through bottom up grassroots movements. As Archbishop Romero said the day he was killed, “Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something.” We will reflect on the power and history of grassroots movements of nonviolence; and joining and staying with the movements for the rest of our lives.

Video Six: The Mission of Nonviolence: Going Forward as People of Nonviolence, Working for a New Nonviolent World
In this sixth video and conclusion John reflects on the mission of nonviolence; the big vision of working for the abolition of war, poverty, greed, racism, sexism, nuclear weapons, environmental destruction and all violence; and the need to stay with the struggle for justice and peace, come what may, so that we practice the holistic, mature nonviolence of Gandhi and King and fulfill our vocations to be peacemakers.

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