Saturday, December 31, 2016
If you ever get into a discussion about society and the individual, there will be a point where the finger of blame/responsibility is directed at the magical THEY. Every time I am in such discussions the wisdom of an old friend screams in my ear the phrase – no government acts without the will of the people. Now, since I have had this discussion many times there are always the same points made about Hitler, Pol Pot, Saddam Hussein, Genghis Khan and other horrifying situations. However, the reality is that these people ruled by fear which most people capitulated to. Such situations drive right to the heart of an earlier article I wrote about defending another with everything you have, even your life. The situation the world or even your community, town, city or family is experiencing is due to how you have allowed it progress. Basically when you complain about how governments treat the people it is only that way because we have allowed that to take place. As that reality settles in, it is imperative to understand that it has taken years to get to where we are. Conversely, it will take some time and effort to move society. This is no easy task nor is it simple. First off, the work always begins within the individuals mind, heart and soul. Taking great care of how you are is very important. There will be those moments where sitting on the couch to watch movies or reading a book or cleaning the house or playing piano or physical exercising or praying will all collide and you must choose which to do. This really does point to what your dreams are and truly working towards them. Life being what it is there will be people such as mentioned above who share similar dreams. This is the great struggle of good versus evil. Taking all of that into consideration, we tend to judge others because we feel that no one else is holding up their end of responsibility. We complain, point out all the corruption, blame the other, or feel there is no use and give in. What is very interesting in these comments each of us make is that a great many of them are actually your own mind telling yourself where you want to make changes. It is your self analysis being projected upon the world. Within the self awareness and social awareness dichotomy, manifests the compounding weight of one person making a difference in the world. Such a massive amount of work can be overwhelming. However, the reality is that all anyone can really work on is the self. This is how a group of people bond together to the point where each will die to defend another. Each person has come to the point where they know that life is worth defending. That person knows that the love and care they have for themselves will be far greater when they give all of that to another. Look within your own mind and equate it to how you feel about the world around you. As you do this, understand that life is about experiencing and understanding all that is. All of life is then balanced by the knowledge that there is no light without dark and both are there to support the other. We must embrace all that is. When we do this there is no more THEY We will understand that we are both the problems and solutions everyone encounters. and governments will no longer be some phantom of oppressive power. We will seek methods to build upon success and ways to let go of the mistakes, to hold no grudges, to seek the utopia each of us dreams of and support others when they ask for help when they face struggles. There are many that do not have such a view and that has to be okay with those who do. For those that do not have such a view, to them it appears that government can act without the will of the people.
Monday, December 12, 2016
Throughout my career of being an adviser for conflict management, I have always had a strong focus on the need for rebuilding individual communities that make up a country. In truth the focus has been on the individual, yet wisdom is very accurate in that it is easier to lead the masses than to lead a single person. Of late, there has been a great deal of research articles being published on this area of peacebuilding. From what I can gather from the readings is that there is a change of words/ideas taking place. The change is viewing peacebuilding as relationship building. Usually I do not pay attention to what I would see as semantics. However I let this one roll around my brain for a while. Building relationships and peace have a great deal in common. More to the point, you have to understand the relationships between as many participants as possible in order to build peace. This understanding can be very complex as we deal with organizations that are very large. To make a point here, just think of how you view your relationship with government or any corporation. Now, project that unto the field of the community you live in. What is similar, what is different? One question that is always present in peacebuilding is where to start the process. It seems logical to start with the groups who are fighting. What happens when you find out the neither side is willing to talk or even stop fighting? If that is the case how are you ever going to focus on communities when you can not reach them? Think of a family where the two parents are really having a major break down and the children are being used as vehicles to spread hate and revenge. How does anyone stop that insane situation? Everyone can understand this scenario even in a relatively peaceful place. This scenario is very similar to what is taking place in Syria. Commonalities of relationship and peacebuilding is the need to prevent further harm. The ultimate reason for intervening in wars is to save people and future generations from the savagery of war. Although we know why we do it, how to best accomplish peace and build relationships is being argued right now in Syria and with the family that is breaking up. From the grand scale of Syria to the individual scale of the family, the tactics to bring peace are the same as are the challenges. Some people do not even want to get involved and that has to be recognized as a factor in building relationships and peace. It is always interesting to implement the theories being discussed. Seeing as we have not built the perfectly peaceful environment yet, we have a few more experiments to test out. I wish everyone the best success possible in their experiments to find peace.
Monday, December 5, 2016
We live is a world of dual leadership - or so it seems. There are government rules, work rules, family rules and then there are your own set of rules. There are also moral guides, legal guides and then there are the there is no other way guides. Taking all of that into consideration and understanding that life has been that way for thousands of years can fry a few wires in the brain. Such understandings get right to the heart of the "who am I, what am I spirituality questions. What is the overarching guiding principle that governs you? How did that guiding element get into your being? Each of these questions speak to a social construct that you have been apart of. In simple terms it can be your culture, your identity and/or your philosophy of life. It all comes down to why and how choices are made. The construction of any mind (and largely a society) will soon come to the point of building educational facilities. These facilities take on many forms. What does not change is the element of building these facilities so that a certain understanding of civility, peace, structure and knowledge is to be passed along. Another similarity all over the world is that parents are responsible for raising, teaching and supporting the children they bring into the world. Further to that, there is a common saying stating a community is to also take a certain amount of responsibility to raise the children in their community. Now for the complications. Where are the lines drawn for the sharing of the responsibilities? At this very moment those lines have been completely wiped out to the point where there is no clear understanding. This understanding is a major part of everyone mismanaging civil society. In global realities it is why we have groups such as Daesh (ISIS). In a more local setting it is how we get children graduating who can not read or write. This is how we get leaders telling us it is not safe to send children to school. This is how we get children not even graduating. This is how we get to the point where schools are more like jails with lock down doors, police in hallways, cameras and everyone scared of some harmful possibility. At this point the most often comment made is that the world has changed. Well that is true to a very fine margin. The reality is that the essence of life will remain the same forever. The materials we surround ourselves with will change but that is all. How we treat each other, how we teach children to walk, talk, read, write, behave and grow will always be the same. The thoughts of a parent 1000 years ago are the exact same as they are today. They want their children to have the best life possible and full of opportunities. As we have worked to build that best possible life we have made the world a great deal safer today than it was 100 years ago. However, we also built an illusion of complexity to such a point where we are feeling insecure in our own communities. This speaks the the very point of that we have no clear understanding of societal responsibilities. This understanding is a major part of everyone mismanaging civil society and it is putting everyone in grave danger. We have over protected ourselves to the point where a simple answer is only possible if it is prefaced with a disclaimer and a ten page legal document – in small print. Risk is part of life. Without risk we would never expand our knowledge. There is a point where we have to stop making new policies, laws, improvements and see what each of these have done to the entire society. The world needs a break from itself. We all need a play day to let of some steam, to recharge, to get back to a path that actually makes sense or to just get everyone on the same path. It seems as though we are all going madly off in all directions. It seems there is no clarity, understanding or even a common idea that everyone can agree upon anymore. As in every article I write I am again making note of the responsibilities of the individual to be a peaceful person. That is the top priority in this world as it always has been and always will be. When we build facilities to educate society the main concern should always be the peaceful mind of ourselves and each other.
Tuesday, November 22, 2016
With over five years of completed destruction of Syria the world is still wondering how to bring peace to that country. The really sad part of the statement of not knowing how to bring peace is the reality that the answer is known. What is lacking is the will to actually do the work. To be precise, the lack of will is on the part of the leaders and not the people who actually do the difficult tasks. What is the answer to bringing peace to Syria? The answer is the cliché – boots on the ground. Looking back on how Syria spiraled into this chaos we will see the very tactic of boots on the ground. As mentioned in an earlier article, Al Qeida produced a document named “The Management of Savagery”. This document is a step by step teaching aid on how to take over any sector, area, city, or country. Oddly enough it is also the exact method to bringing peace. The difference is the mindset of those putting the plan into practice. The Management of Savagery is specific to the destruction of society using Islamic rules and most times twisting Islamic ideology, the methods are very similar to what is known as sector security reform. The simplicity of the plan is that you need to have people living, raising families and working in the area you are trying to take over. Then comes the complexity of putting those people on the ground comes into play. For the most part the leaders of the world would rather drop bombs, fire missiles and send drones than put people on the ground. The reasons for that is easily understood but such a tactic only prolongs the war and builds a deep hatred within the minds of the children who get caught in the war. Dropping bombs erodes the trust of those who say they are trying to bring peace. What the children see on the ground are the people helping them after some unknown force destroyed their home, school, hospital, community, playground and family. The people who make up Daesh may be a group of evil hate filled arseholes but they are the ones hauling the bodies to hospitals, bringing aid, food, water and supplies to the children (even though the supplies are stolen from the United Nations aid programmes). This is the fog of war a child will endure. Who do you think they will side with as they get older? After five years of war a 10 year old is now 15 and an 16 year old is now 21 and most likely had children of their own. What message is that child going to be taught? In the process of negotiations the ideology of using “ultimate hammers” is understood to rarely work. Within the context of war, bombs rarely have the desired wide spread impact. If bombing worked, Allepo would have been turned into a peaceful city long ago. Sadly it is still a battle ground and looks to remain so for a very long time. No doubt there are underground tunnel systems throughout the city that have been and are being made. This war will not end until a peaceful person walks across Syria a hundred times without having to preach peace or lament the atrocity of hatred.
Saturday, November 19, 2016
The world of international trade is being thrust into a new reality with Brexit and the rhetoric of Donald Trump. With trade agreements and relations being looked at, dismantled and/or renegotiated we must understand the reasons. We must also must understand the opportunities. Of recent discussion topics in trade and economics we have heard a great deal about globalization. It is my understanding that globalization has been apart of trade and economic for thousands of years. For example the silk road, Marco Polo, Roman Empire and other European Empires developed a vast trade trading area. With that knowledge, there is very clear evidence that globalization of trade and economics is nothing new to us. The reasons for those wanting to renegotiate agreements is due to feeling a lack of control and/or the feeling of getting the bad end of the stick. Such a situation is understandable to wanting a new agreement. The down side is that those who want out may just find themselves out altogether. Such a situation will lead to a new paradigm of economic hierarchy. What will also happen is an uneasy time as the new takes over from the old. The world is in the midst of the paradigm shift. We are now negotiating our way through what we are familiar with towards a new reality. This is a time for many countries to forge new bonds, bolster old ones, let go of bad ones and bring new opportunities. As we set out to ease the tensions of transitions we must stand confident within ourselves. We know that some will lose, some will gain and a few will remain the same. As those song lyrics become a mantra of the now, we have to be firm in the reality of adventure as we step through the doors of the unknown. There is only one reason why we must do such a thing and that is because we are building towards the perfect society. We are not there yet but with each step we are one more step closer. These turbulent times are what the greatest moments in life are about. We are in the midst of such a time and it is up to us to either take the step ourselves or stand still and go with the flow. As a Canadian, in this moment in time I am of the mind that we must guide this next step the world is about to take. We have an tremendous opportunity to shape the world as we never had before. Countries that are trying to open up, trying to bring peace, trying to improve have an opportunity to enter a new phase of reality. Such times are needed for steps as these to be made. The only thing in our way is the will to actually make those leaps. For many years we have talked about widening our trading partners, getting rid of provincial trade barriers, building infrastructure banks, engaging with emerging markets and reducing our 80% economic reliance on one country. At present we have two major influences voicing opinions of backing away from international trade deals The United Kingdom and the Republic of the United States. We can seize this moment to forge new alliances, agreements and relations. We must diversify our economy now because a better time may not be had for many decades. This our chance to build a model of global success the world will use as a template.
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
Being comforatble with chaos is how many people are dealing with today as the Republic of the United States elects a polarizing person to the office of president. The chaos of the unknown is not that scary. We have a very deep knowlege of the personality type and that is Machiavellian ideology, alive and well. It is not so much the desire to succeed, be better than, desire to control or the fear of elites but the hatred, anger, vengence, destruction of others, stepping on others and segratory ideology for personal/monetary gain that is troubling. Here we are with this reality. We can be shocked and dismayed but we will still have to find ways to work together. With that, perhaps there are opportunities to improve trade agreements and to improve relations. We may have doubts but that should not stop us from fingding those improvements. What we are faced with is the task for those that have stood up and barked about how great/smart and accomplished they are in politics. If those people are as skilled as they say they are, we have no cause for panic. There was already an enourmous amount of work to do and still needs to be done. Each of us has our own work to focus on to bring peace to our world. What matters most is how each of us face the tasks of peace. Leaders will change but what will always be the most important factor is the individuals desire to bring peace to themselves and others. Each of us will need methods to vent our emotions, what ever those emotions are. That will never change. If you do not trust in yourself to be peaceful then you will not have a positive peaceful impact on the world. As I have often stated, anger and acts of aggression of an individual are more about that individuals desires to change but have not or believes they can not change. With Donald Trump we have a vast data bank of his work and words where he vents. That data tells us where he, himself wants to change. Whether he will or can is up to him but we do know where his concerns are and how to work with those concerns. Unless he is insane, then all bets are off and we must insulate him as best we can to contain the harm.
Wednesday, November 2, 2016
The reason we had to invent governments was to organize society to accomplish large scale tasks of common good. As we/society progressed we had to deal with individuals that operated against the common good. These untrustworthy people are a major factor why we had to invent systems for public discourse. These systems are widely known as the judicial system – laws, courts, police, jail, lawyers, etc… Having these systems are good but, it really does cause me some misery as I think the lack of trust we, encourage and carry towards each other. The lack of trust is best viewed in the phrase, it is unethical but it is legal. This is Niccolo Machiavelli theory in its simplest format which is defined as cunning, scheming, and unscrupulous, especially in politics or in advancing one's career. As we use game theory practices we understand that such a system will eventually erode and kill itself. However these practises are still widely used, supported and accepted. This is why we have phrases such as: Read the fine print, get it in writing, they will twist your words, perception is reality and other such terminology. How do we stop such behaviour? As difficult as it is, it has to start with each and everyone of us. Yes that does mean you will be taken advantage of as we set out to enact change. Sadly I have to acknowledge that there will be very few of us willing to take that course of action. So we will slowly slide into the untrusting hell of small print, twisted words, perceptions of peace and personal gain at the expense of all others. What world are we building where we support the efforts of taking advantage of others because we can for personal gain? Utopian ideology, it certainly is. However, there is not a single person who would say no to such a reality and everyone would say no to the world of untrusting small print, get it writing, word twisting scavengers. Oh wait we are saying yes to the untrusting small print, get it writing, word twisting scavengers. What a world we are building.
Monday, October 31, 2016
For one reason or another, system ideology has been a very hot topic in my life lately. System ideology is a term that defines steps to accomplish goals or methods to navigate through chaos, basically how we get from here to there. Every time such a discussion comes up I have to state that no system is greater than the people operating it. In my last article I made the analogy of a bad driver who has options to drive a luxury vehicle or a junker. The end result is that no matter what the vehicle is the driver will remain bad. In terms of politics, the same applies. If a leader is terrible the system could be democratic, autocratic, monarchy, communist or some hybrid of all them and still the leader would be terrible. As the debate rages on about what system is better it must be noted that every system has it valid points and its downfalls. To look at this topic in a personal basis, there is no family that would only use a democratic system with two, three, five and seven year old children. In this situation at some point an authoritarian system must be employed. In recent month this very analogy is being used in the international debate of system ideology. The past year has been a very interesting one in relation to this topic of systems. We have seen the United Kingdom deal with a separation referendum internally and externally. The European Union has to manage the exit of Britain as well as the Belgium vote on international trade deal. Poland is also looking at its system of politics. Then there is what the Republic of the United States is going through as well. Columbia just went through a difficult referendum of a peace agreement with the rebel group FARC which the people turn down. At the most brutal we can look at Syria with its battle of system ideology. For anyone that is interested in such topics, the past year has been a carnival of excitement. On the global stage both Russia and China have pointed to the failures of democracy. Of course the situation in the Republic of the United States is their main target. On the surface it does appear that democracy has not been a shining example of good governance. However, we must remember that a system is only as good as the people operating it. We also must remember that China is doing very well because of economics not politics. Further to that, when the economics begin to slow China will have a very difficult situation. Moreover we must also be aware that most corporations operate under authoritarian systems. Each of the above examples can be a rabbit hole of research and discussion. At the end of all the discussion will be a statement that an excellent leader will know what system is best for what situation. The difficulty rests with the ease of transitioning from one to another and ensuring the people know and understand why and what system is being used. That task is one of communication deserves its own article.
Thursday, October 20, 2016
To put this simply as possible, you can drive a Ferrari, Cadillac or a beat up 1987 Ford F150 truck, if you are a bad driver the vehicle will be of no help. We often seek better things in hopes that it will improve the self. What actually takes place is the waste of good resources, harmful impact and the erosion of trust. This erosion is impacting our education, healthcare, governments, communities, friends and even our families. I am growing so tired of hearing the phrase – it all comes down to money. If that is true we are all dead or worse we are just walking zombies feeding and chasing a false idol. For example, we have had instant wireless communication since Marconi inventions in the late 1880’s. Since then we have seen two world wars and massive death tolls, but have we had better communication? We certainly have more communication but the quality is questionable. This is an exact example of our main struggles today. We have wonderful things yet are we utilizing them to improve ourselves? What we get on all media platforms is speeches of togetherness, freedom, family, security, excellence, peace of mind, caring community, beauty and even love. Yet the reality is we are being sold something for a price and the true cost is far greater in damage. After years of working in the most desperate situations this world can offer, our problem is not a lack of food, money, water, communication, education, healthcare, or opportunities. Our problem is the lack of interest to fair distribution, greed and poor use of these elements. The argument against what I am writing here is that we need to work, support our families, communities and we need to provide our children with the best possible life. I understand these arguments. Understand this though - you can raise a child in a castle or a shack, neither will matter to that child. The most important item is to know they are emotionally, spiritually, mentally and physically secure, supported and loved. The irony of all this is that we have the intelligence to live without the stress of monetary limits and endless pursuit of material wealth. We have the intelligence to know that a child does not need a kings palace to realize dreams and achieve greatness. We have the intelligence to build such a society, we simply choose not to live in such a manner. We are judging ourselves and others using a monetary measuring stick. If you question that realize the quickest way to be viewed as an important person is to win millions of dollars. You can have the best things this world offers and still fail. We have to get back to doing what is right/just no matter what the dollar amount is. If you ever get the chance to live in such a society you will immediately know that money/material wealth do not even register on the list of worries.
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Every day there is an election that takes place in the world. In every election there are a number of different tactics and philosophy debated. One such debate that has always been an issue is voter turnout. Should voting be mandatory? So now you have just went off about our charter of rights and freedoms. In all truthfulness, everyone in the world can do whatever they want. Go visit Syria for a week and you will witness the completed range of human freedoms. When you get back from that hell, you will want to control, manage or temper some things. Perhaps, it is understood that we must control some peoples actions and keep a semblance of order. I am with you on that because I have to keep my own mind in check every day. Now we understand there are a great many duties, obligations and responsibilities each of us must engage in for a peaceful society to flourish. Moving from the hell of Syria to a more peaceful setting we can scale back on the severity of life and death. On a less dramatic level of personal freedom try not paying taxes. Try building a water system that is fed by collected rain water to flow into your toilet in an urban neighbourhood. Want some real fun, try getting your personal information deleted from data banks collected and held by political parties or corporations? Furthermore would you trust them if they told you they did delete it? That answer is the crux of where society begins to unravel. Mandatory voting does have its down sides which is people just marking a ballot and have no clue what they voted for. I am sure that happens now anyway. The focus would be on ensuring a persons vote is an informed one not just getting your supporters out. Before, during and after each election we have discussions on voter turnout. Each time we talk about how to increase the turnout, we ask who shares this responsibility? First answer is always the individual. Well that solution is already known to be ineffective. Next we have the political parties and the independent candidates who take up the responsibility running for elected office. Here is where everything gets complicated beyond all sane rational. Every political party will be steadfast in its stance about increasing the voter turnout. However there is a supreme caveat to that stance which really means: Every political party is interested in getting out their own supporters. The overall voter turnout is not really in their interest. Case in point is the federal Conservative party efforts on turning out their core supporters. Let us not forget the many efforts put towards fake robo calls, giving out false information as to election stations and other tactics political parties have used. I understand completely why some people are disgusted with politics and why they do not vote. It comes down to trust. Going back to the issue of voter data banks. These lists and data banks of information on voters are necessary. Before I go on a huge rant all I am going to say is that I am not in support of these lists being given to anyone and never should a political party be allowed to collect and retain any voter information longer than the election time frame. I know how difficult that would make it for those seeking elected office but if you are scared of that then do not bother running. My experience has been that these list are more about convenience for politicians than they are about benefitting the voter. It is time we respect the voter, the electoral process and building a trusting society more than building a society of convenience.
Monday, September 12, 2016
There is no worse situation we can dream of than the inner struggle/war a person has to deal with. Sometimes the inner battle spills over to the point where the person harms themselves and/or others. When it involves others, the blast radius can encircle the entire world. This is why every single war is started in the mind of a single person. In our efforts to mitigate the damage caused by a widening of inner struggles, we must care for that individual, each other and ourselves. Taking the international wars into consideration with the above paragraph, we can see how a single countries personality becomes so important. The events taking place inside any particular country is something that we must be aware of and care about. We also have to be honest when we answer the question of what our ultimate goals/reasons are for being alive. We all know that money is often the driving force behind most of our efforts. Yet what we often push aside is the honest answer of why we do anything. Those two factors of money and honesty can pull us in separate directions. Now with a global mind we have to ask why does China, Paraguay, Russia, Lesotho, Canada, Myanmar or Estonia act as they do?
Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Once again the Palestine Israel situation has taken another twist. I have put many words towards this relationship and still I feel as though it would be more comforting to just smash my head against a brick wall. The fact of the matter is that human right violations are a reality and both sides have acted shamefully. There is no one side that is more guilty or less guilty. A crime is a crime is a crime no matter who has done the act. What needs to be done is for both sides to stand up and acknowledge the reality of their actions. It is time for both to show true leadership and be accountable for their actions. No more of this garbage of saying that there are far worse acts of criminality to focus on. That statement only supports the knowledge of your criminality and the continued use of such tactics. It is utter hypocrisy to use such a statement while calling for peace at the same time. Each of us knows that organizations are fraught with members that are regrettable. In the founding statements of the Boycott, Divest and Shame movement, the analogy of Apartheid is made. It was a great moment when the system of Apartheid was ended. It will be an even greater moment when we defeat the hatred that is stopping peace in the Middle East. However, we are in a situation where hypocrisy is rampant. The Boycott, Divest and Shame movement speaks of peace yet have members who are not peaceful. It is that simple. We are in a spiral of hatred that is growing due to hypocrisy. Speak against Israel and you are an anti-semite, speak against Palestine and you are a Zionist. Well for the record I am in favour of peace and will call out those that act with complete disregard for peace. In this case of Israel and Palestine neither one can stand up and say they have acted with honour. Each have used every tool at their disposal to destroy each other. Both have engaged in grand hypocrisy to the point where nothing is to be believed that is said or argued. In short – neither has a leg to stand on when it comes to justification of their actions. The only actions that needs to take place now is to put the entire region under international guardianship, completely disarm the entire region, and then let the talks begin. I am not interested in how long this will take because the time factor will be as long as it has to be. If you are serious about peace you will see the need for such a process.
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Being at peace is understanding the differences of doing what you want, doing what you have to and doing what is needed. There are people such as those who fill the ranks of Daesh. These people will take every advantage to gain power over others. That is what they want to do. They do not need to and they certainly do not have to yet they are. The cost of these people wreaking havoc is bringing the entire world into fear. Again there are the option of wanting to fear, having to fear and needing to fear. We live with uncertainty every day and terrorism ads to the list of fears. However we also know that the best way to counter the actions of Daesh is to have a strong, supportive, loving and friendly community. It starts with saying hello to your neighbours, building relationships and allowing for unsettling times to be dealt with in a calm manner. In the world of politics we often get people who spit facts, history, rights, laws, morals and orders all to defend or justify their actions. Well this is the exact tactic being used by Daesh in their management of savagery guide book. There is no room for the other person in the plan, no diversity, no flexibility and certainly the end result is no peace. The war of power and influence is part of the experience we live in. At the moment we have pending wars in the South China Sea, A resurgence of the Cold War and it looks as though the Crusades have sparked up again. Why? What do we have to learn about killing each other that we have not already learned? We have proven that the best countries in the world to live are those that are the most peaceful. The most desired communities are those that have friendly, supportive, peaceful neighbours. Yet there are those that still want, need and have to wage war.
Friday, July 15, 2016
Every time I write about an issue (when I complain) there is always the point of making sure there is a solution. There are three basic steps to every solution. First we explore what peace is, then we act in a peaceful manner and the third step is to support others peace. Here is an example of what I am writing about. http://www.peacedirect.org/us/the-power-of-one-peace-activist-in-pakistan-sails-story/
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
The connections of actions and reasons are the motivations for our behaviours. Of all the books, teachings, speeches and quotes about peace, there is no replacing actions. From actions we can begin to understand the reasons why we do things. Life involves every possibility in existence. That means there will be harms done on purpose and some that are unintended. In simple terms, at some point we all get a rock in our shoe if you walk long enough. The rock had no intentions of being in your shoe but still it ended up in there. Then there are time when the rock just will not stay out of your shoes. Everyone knows a person that enjoys being a pest. You know a person that will poke you just to see you get agitated. These people are part of life, as are the people that constantly complain and argue. How we deal with these people is the art of peace. For the most part we are able to be a peaceful society in the grand vision of the world. Then there are the moments when peace is completely thrown out of the way, which Daesh is all about. This is where peace is most tested. We can not ignore them, nor can we rid ourselves of them quickly. We must act to protect ourselves from such acts of terrorism. This puts us in a situation where peace is in a dangerous position. We must face reality that protection can mean killing another. This puts us in a direct contradiction of what peace seeks to be. This is the reason for what is deemed a last resort and also we must acknowledge that violence is often a first resort for some. Long term solutions using a peaceful approach is one of education. We need to understand the motivations of those that work to disturb peace. This needs to take place at an individual level first and foremost. At the individual level, people will seek out like minded people. Then the inner circle begins, thought becomes insulated, supported and grows. Peace is a flexible environment, hate and violence is very rigid. Oddly enough there is an element of hate that is quite interesting. Often the things we hate are more about changes we want to make in our own personal lives more than who or what we are directing hate and anger towards. Let that element take root in your thoughts when you seek to understand your motivations to act.
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Currently we are seeing past leaders such as Tony Blair put to the fire for the outcomes of the 2003 Iraq invasion. Now, I have written many times in various words that peace takes a great deal of projected thought. Often we act within moments of blind knowledge. Those acts bring us unknown reverberations. For those that seek lasting and real peace, they understand the impact of acting with blind knowledge or seeing unintended consequences. In such situations we often hear the phrase – “had I known at the time this would have been the outcome, I would have done something else”. It is within this phrase that the need to understand the reality of unintended consequences is paramount, especially within the context of war. However, there are some that will say that we have no clue what an unintended consequence can be. Yet, when we are dealing with peace we have a great understanding of what will transpire. What we have little knowledge of is the impact of war. Even though we have been engaging in war for thousands of years we have a wide knowledge base of how to get into war and manage war. Sadly we lack proficient skills with finishing or avoiding war at the global leadership level. One great example of unintended consequences is Alfred Noble and dynamite. He immediately witnessed the unintended uses of dynamite as a terrorist tool to kill others. Other areas of concern deals with technology. An example is the wide use of internet and global internet security. On one side, the use of the internet is great for sharing ideas and information widely and instantly. On another side we have not seeing as much theft of information. We are all experimenting with life and there are some things that we just can not know unless we take action. From a peace perspective we know that we can understand a great deal more of what will transpire than if we acted with non-peaceful mind.
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
If you have ever read my About Me side bar, thank you. Truly though, that side bar explains how connected I see everything in this world is. At the moment we have Britain leaving the European Union while the entire continent of Africa is seeking a single passport system. We also have an old rivalry heating up between Russia and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Further to these evolving dynamics we have the emergence of the Asian Development Bank and the Trans Pacific Partnership. In each of the above elements, there are global impacts which will have consequences for many individuals. It is the task of each individual to remain at peace during difficultly. These conflicting times really test our resolve to be peaceful. I think we have come to a point where we understand that war, violence, killing each other solves very little. Now at the same time I understand that insanity is a large factor of life and someone will act with deadly force. An example is Daesh (ISIS) and we must also note that every country has episodes of insanity. For example the Iraq war, Ukraine, Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo and other civil wars should have all been avoided. Sadly they could have been avoided. Today, we must see the wisdom of peace. We must understand the large dynamics of global peace within the smaller elements of life, whatever realm we work within. No country will go without having some impact of Britain leaving the European Union just as no country has gone without being impacted by the Syrian war. Peace is very much about managing todays upheavals in context of tomorrow relational needs. This is where all the wisdom quotes, clichés, axioms and catch phrases come into play. However, what is needed is for us to actually act in the manner of those wise words. For those words to take hold we must understand why we need to act in such a manner. To answer the why question, the largest question that is before us is – What are we building. We are building, cultures, identity, homes and doing so within a set boundary. Each of us will have a different goal and path that will intertwine with everyone, thus conflict. Due to this natural occurrence we must control ourselves as we cross boundaries and culture. These are the experiments of life each of us engage in, whether we like it or not.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Will Britain leave the European Union? Will BRICS formulate a new world currency? What is the next Trans Pacific Partnership deal or Multilateral Agreement on Investment? Who will be the next sitting government leader to go to trial and be convicted? Each of these questions deal with the balance of power and control single countries must grapple with. As each of us forge ahead into the unknown we build what we think is better. Reality has shocked us with the unintended consequences of our actions. For example we have the debate of control and power between governments and multinational corporations. There is also the debate about whether countries who stand for democracy actually are democratic. Then there are countries that define themselves one way yet act in complete contradiction to their own proclaimed identity. Aside from the governments we must be aware of the wild card factors. Those being non-state actors, terrorist organizations, non-government organizations and the one percent of extremely wealthy individuals around the world. Due to all of these influences the topic of global governance has been an idealistic and cumbersome discussion. You would think that the ideology of having one set of rules would be an easy one to implement. Yet for whatever reason it has eluded us due to the desire to have control and individuality. However we have heard arguments of multinational corporations having more power than a governments. This was a main opposition point for the Multilateral Agreement on Investment in the late 1990’s. The same is being said about the Trans Pacific Partnership. Identity and control are the two main points which fuel the debate concerning the European Union and what is known as BREXIT. Such exercises are necessary and useful when it comes to experiments with large regional/global partnerships. We must be willing to step into the unknown at times just to see what happens. It is that point which the global governance issue is centered upon, at least in my thoughts.
Wednesday, June 1, 2016
This week we witnessed the sentencing of former Chadian dictator Hissene Habre to life in prison for crime against humanity, war crimes and other deeds of utter stupidity. As we forge ahead in building a world that is peaceful, orderly and governed with great wisdom and compassion, there will be many more leaders sentenced. We are not there yet but the road is being built. This is the next step in a long journey towards our dreams of a just society. At moments such as these the victims of these crimes have some consolation yet must still deal with the reality of the past. Each person has a singular journey to travel yet they can find some comfort in the knowledge that the world is slowly getting things set right. In many of the wars taking place right now, there are such actors as Hissene Habre. Bringing these people to account is a challenge. Due to the creation of the International Criminal Court a large step was made. Now we have a former head of state being charged. At some point we knew this was going to happen. There have been many other leaders charged but only a very few brought to trial or convicted or sentenced. Leaders such as Ghaddaffi faced a different court, as did Saddam Hussein. These types of courts are not what is desired in a peaceful world but they are a reality we must be aware of them, even if they are rife with corruption. With International Justice day approaching on 16July, we need to look at what is being built for a better tomorrow.
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Packing up a few belongings after your entire home/town has been destroyed and walking into the complete unknown is rarely a choice people want to make. However when your entire home has been destroyed there is often only the choice of stay and die or leave and maybe live, what choice is there? Some do stay which means they will have to fight every second for everything. When the decision is made to leave there is a hope of food and security in refugee camps. Of course when the destination of the refugee camp is made your thoughts of food and security are changed and basic life existence is quickly understood. In all of this rests the unrelenting capacity of faith and peace. Each of us strive to succeed in obtaining peace. Peace is the singular goal of every person alive. This faith we all share and yet we have so many methods of getting there. Some of us believe that if we kill enough people, eventually we will get rid of those that are stopping us from obtaining peace. Some of us believe that if we segregate the right people then peace will take hold. Ironically almost every religious icon has been hated by some. For example Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, Vishnu and Buddha have all had enemies and these are the pillars of faith that we have today. So if these foundational prophets or gods have enemies what does that indicate for us? Before everyone gives up we must realize that each of those mentioned above preached the need for individuals to reach their own peace first. That is the apex of all our troubles. We have gotten wrapped up in forcing others how to live. The path to peace is through the individual finding peace in everything. Anger is an emotion that tells you where you have to change. Not how others have to change. Frustration is an emotion that tells us where we have more work to accomplish with ourselves. Suppressing others is our own insecurities being imposed upon others. Instead of suppressing someone or hating someone, seek to change your own understanding of the world. That is the path to peace. When you feel such emotions look for what that is telling you about your own life. The moment you try to justify actions or thoughts towards another you have given up on being a peaceful person. This is where faith takes a major role. Each of us have to trust in ourselves to remain focused on peace. If anyone breaks that focus within themselves the entire world of peace is broken. Peace relies on each of us to remain focused. We must retain the faith of peace within to achieve peace without.
Sunday, February 14, 2016
As has been stated before, Syria is a grand example of how not to conduct a process to end a violent conflict. Never mind the violence taking place on the ground, one of the largest barriers to peace rests with two countries that really should have no say in how the peace process is dealt with. These two barriers are Russia and Republic of the United States (RUSA). From the very outset of the Syrian war, these two have caused a great deal of damage just by holding up the process of peace. Here we are five years into the destruction of Syria and there is escalation of fear in a worsening situation. What is the reason for this escalation? What is so important that we must allow millions of people to be destroyed as we do close to nothing to end the violence? To be completely realist, the only reason is ego. Sadly the flag of complexity will be raised as solutions are discussed. Well in truth there is a complexity involved which deals with relationships of global power. Syria just happens to be the proxy war the childish behavior of Russia and RUSA is being waged upon. How are we to bring peace when the two major powers are actually fighting each other? Even though we have to acknowledge the difficulties, the true nature of the challenges rest within the complete idiocy of leadership. This war is made ever more painful when we realize that it could have been stopped years ago. Here we are today with the possibility of another five years to endure the destruction of people. As that continues we are ever more increasing the chances of more hatred to take root in the next global terrorist leader. There is no one actual method to the Syrian war. We must come to understand that the peace effort has taken the same route as the war – weak leadership that allows individual actors to drift along doing as they please with no consequence or remorse. The solution absolutely needs the voice of each person in the world to stand up and demand their leaders act with less combative ego. Until we come to terms on a unified strategy, leadership structure, ideology and outcome goals we are doomed to have this war rage on for many more years.
Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Getting right into the heart of the battle to maintain a peaceful society is to understand the pain of war. In its totality this understanding is like reading Tolstoys’ War and Peace in five days – a difficult task yet simple if you have the tenacity to obtain the goal. Furthermore it is a task that a single person can only accomplish. Of course there are shortcuts. You can read the abridged versions. Watching the movie is another method. Both will still leave the book truly unread and the task not completed in reality, it is a half measure. At some point you will have to get down and work at it word by word. The above analogy is the very work of maintaining a peaceful society. Some will embrace it while others will loathe it. Some will fight, some will take short cuts and some will not even try. With that struggle is a multitude of emotions which people will carry concerning the task. Just as we have similar struggles to maintain peace around the world. Currently we are dealing with the many Daesh type organizations killing people around the world. Stopping them requires each and every one of us to do our part. These organizations thrive on individuals who are lost or are feeling as though they have to act violently. Such a mindset creates an internal downward spiral of hatred that will worsen if not eased. As that spiral of hatred increases so will the efforts to exact revenge, cause damage and/or seek approval from others to increase impact. Even though the above description seems to be simplistic, the solutions to terrorism rests in that simplicity. The complexity is challenging enough on the individual basis. We must also deal with the global network as well. In truth terrorism is a dual front challenge that we must take on. On the physical front we also have the sad challenge of dealing with death. The breakdown of dealing with the individual leads to the greater problem of having to physically fight. As that challenge increases the result will eventually lead to the decision to kill. We are at that point now where killing each other has become industrial. We were warned about the industrial complex after the second world war. We did not learn enough from that warning at that time. We are learning more about it now. The experience piece is being taught right now. The entire world is involved in this as is every person. How do we stop terrorism? At this very moment we are using death as a deterrent. The global effort includes the military, security and intelligence gathering efforts. In truth we know that is not the solution. It is part of the puzzle which will not work without the individual component. The true solution rests in the individual responsibility to care and protect each other. Just like reading War and Peace, you have to take it one word at a time.
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
In past writings this topic has been the main point. In the past fifteen years the situation in the South China Sea has grown worse. In truth there is no reason why this could not be solved already. For the past twenty years in the South China Sea many confrontations have ignited over resources and territorial claims. During this time we have witnessed a few other wars that have kept the South China Sea off the major news screen, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Ukraine, the Jasmine Revolution and others. However the possibility of a major war being sparked has worried some for many years. The South China Sea has many countries overlapping each others claimable territorial zones. The countries involved are Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei, Singapore and China. Within the sea are the Spratly Islands, Paracels Islands and the Scarborough Shoal. Each of these have a claim on territory which is debated by other countries as they battle for the riches of resources that lay beneath the ocean. During the past number of years the price of oil increased and rhetoric put a stress point on claiming territory. In response to the rhetoric being increased many countries have begun building up military capacity. China is no different as they have really put a great deal of effort into increasing their military capacity. As this area slowly boils up, it is easy to understand the China will have a greater capacity to submit force in both economics and military. When you live in a world where might makes right you can see why the smaller countries have a legitimate fear of being pushed aside if not crushed. What is the world to do? If we are to cut the head off of an impending war we must act as soon as possible. At present there have been efforts to negotiate an end yet for whatever reason no end is in sight. Looking into the future it appears that war is going to happen based upon how the situation has been going. The only reason such situations blow up is due to greed and power. There is no other point to such wars. China exerts itself because it can. To be honest, China is only doing what Russia, RUSA, and other countries have done. Even though that is a childish excuse it is the reality of the situation in many of the wars we endure.