How To Teach Our Children That Non-Violence Still Matters

peace

Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.– Thomas Edison

You might think that “world peace” as a term and concept has become tritely overused and clichéd due to improper usage/ poor publicity. What we need is a makeover of minds. That’s right, a mental makeover. Imagine that you are nine years old and your teacher decides to speak a bit about social studies for the day. She has chosen the topic of the discovery of your state, country, etc. What was supposed to start out as a diplomatic, non-political lesson ends up being a debate between children on who won the war of claiming the lands or war of independence. I think that history is important and that wars are definitely part of what shaped modern society into what it is today. However, I think that more education systems need to teach the peaceful inter-relational methods of non-violence. Does this mean that MLK and Gandhi should be promoted to the utmost? Of course not.

We can reduce  violence, aggression and mental upset. We can also have a tremendous impact as the voice of a public who are tired of their nation’s quarrels. Just as education is perhaps the greatest tool of change, non-violence is the greatest facet of the newly born human condition. Think about it. We are biologically the most advanced species in the world. Why are we, then, reverting to our animal instincts, picking up guns and weaponry to solve our petty problems?

Here are two steps that you should apply immediately:

#1 PRACTICE RECOGNIZING, LABELING, AND DISAPPROVING OF SPECIFIC INSTANCES OF VIOLENCE AND UNKINDNESS.

Teach children to do the same in a wide variety of contexts, such as while watching TV, observing peers at school and play, and observing parents and siblings at home. You are teaching your children to think with clarity and discernment (i.e. right versus wrong, wise vs. unwise, rational vs. irrational, appropriate vs. inappropriate).

#2 CLEARLY TELL MANUFACTURERS AND RETAILERS THAT YOU DON’T LIKE VIOLENT TOYS, GAMES BY NOT BUYING THEM.

Tell stores not to sell them. Throw the violence-training tools you already have in the garbage, thereby giving an unequivocal message of unacceptability to your children. Spare ‘the needy” of your rejects. If you’re having a birthday party for boy, write on the invitation, ”No violence teaching toys, please.” And obviously, if your child is then going to turn a stick into a gun, handle the teaching of nonviolence similarly.

Number 2 means a great deal to me as my parents forbid us to play with anything that was violent. We were not allowed to play with toy guns in any fashion.

We need to model different behavior.

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