Where it all begins, Part 2

Colin Henderson’s winning design displayed at 2009 Domestic Violence Awareness Rally, Fort Jackson. Author: Sharonda Pearson As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image is in the public domain.


By Kathie MM

As noted in my last post , if people want to move their countries from a preoccupation with war, hatred, power, threat, and punishment to the pursuit of peace, brotherly (and sisterly) love, social equality, justice, and reconciliation, the place to start is the home.

Suggestions for starting can be found in the work of Robert J. Burrowes and his “promise to children”:

“From today, I promise that I will try to no longer inflict this violence on you, including that which I call ‘punishment’ so that I can pretend that I am not using violence…

I also admit that we adults have done a bad job at looking after each other, including all of our children, and planet Earth, your home, and that you are going to have an increasingly difficult life as the natural world continues to break down. So I promise to participate in efforts being made to address all of these problems, such as that outlined in ‘The Flame Tree Project to Save Life on Earth’….

 Most importantly of all, I promise that I will listen to you as best I can. See ‘Nisteling: The Art of Deep Listening’….

Oh, and finally, as best I can, I promise to love you and to respect you as a unique, beautiful and compassionate creation with a great deal to offer the world (as long as adults don’t get in your way)….”

After presenting his pledge to children, Burrowes asks, “As an adult, would you be willing to make this promise too? To whom would you make it?

He then comments, “There is no doubt that giving every child (or adult, for that matter) all of the space they need to feel, deeply, what they want to do, and to then let them do it (or to have the feelings they naturally have if someone or something prevents them from doing so) will have some dysfunctional outcomes in the short term.

This is because we have all been dysfunctionalized, to a greater or lesser extent, by the violence we have already suffered throughout our lives. But listening deeply to a child from birth (or starting today), and supporting them to act out their own Self-will, will lead to an infinitely better overall outcome than the system of emotional suppression, control and punishment of children which has generated the incredibly violent world in which we now find ourselves.”

Again, as I asked in my last post, what do you think about these ideas?

If you wish to join the worldwide movement to end all violence, including violence against children, you can sign online ‘The People’s Charter to Create a Nonviolent World’.

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