Monday, October 22, 2012

1400 years of peace work in Iraq


The article itself is not outstanding - a relatively mundane report on an Iraqi peace convention.  Except that it is an urgent reminder, that in all nations, in all places - and perhaps for hundreds of years in many places - there are people who have been working for peace.

The article ends with this paragraph:

The afternoon closes with a rousing, refreshing set of local musicians. A young engineer — who does research on his spare time on the history of nonviolence in Basra going back 1,400 years — brings his four-year-old son Taim, who shyly said hello in English, and then watches the crowd dance to the music and song of his hometown, as it seeks to reclaim its long tradition of nonviolence. Its expression of hospitality certainly suggests it has not lost touch with that tradition.

Who knew!?!

Full article link - which directs to the great work of Fellowship of Reconciliation.

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Lecture with author - Islam without Extremes

A journalist who covers political movements in the Middle East will talk about the latest democratic trends in that region during a presentation at Oklahoma City University at 6 p.m. April 13.

Mustafa Akyol’s presentation, titled “Opportunities for Democracy and Liberties in the Middle East,” is free to the public and will be held in the Meinders School of Business at N.W. 27th Street and McKinley Avenue.

Akyol, a Turkish journalist and author, wrote the book “Islam without Extremes” in which he calls for “an interpretation of Islam that synthesizes liberal ideas and respect for the Islamic tradition.” His articles have appeared in The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Newsweek and other national media sources.

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Extending Grace to Bullies

On the same day I posted about Bullies and Bullying - I read this fantastic post by a friend, Adam Ericksen - who works with the Raven Foundation -  committed to making religion reasonable, violence unthinkable and peace a possibility.

Adam writes about how a Sikh girl who was bullied - extends grace.

She demonstrates a depth of mature faith and keen reflection on the importance of looking beyond appearances, reflecting the Good for the world, focusing on faith and internal beauty - and so much more.

Please - read this link - Beautifully Sacred!

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.


Bullying. Online vigilance.

As a parent of teenage girls, this news about Amanda Todd caught my eye.

No doubt this young girl, in her immaturity, made personal decisions that shaped her own future consequences.

Her naivete & immaturity did not need to lead to bullying, hatred, manipulation, coercion and violence from others - and then violence to herself!

Parents, teachers and mentors to young people can do more to help (and monitor) their children's activities at school, in public places, online - and in so-called "private." 

As CNN reports:
"No one deserves to be bullied. No one earns it. No one asks for it. It is not a rite of passage. Bullying has to stop. Every child has to feel safe at school,"
On Wednesday, Amanda Todd's body was found in her home, police in the Vancouver-area city of Coquitlam said. She took her own life.

She was 15.

Other links to online bullying - also from the CNN page.

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Can Riots be Predicted

If riots can be predicted, we could potentially work in advance to prevent them - or mediate their influence.

Certainly - in any case - we should be attentive to the food needs of persons worldwide.

From the NPR:  "Can Riots Be Predicted" article:

What the researchers have done, Timmer says, is create "a model that's better than anything my economics colleagues have done to explain food prices. The model really works."

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Forgetting Malvo - D.C. - Forging Cultures of Peace

I've been invited to share reflections with the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation.

My first essay begins: 

We’re all selfish. That seems a given. The question becomes, will we foster and train selfishness that leads to violence, or instead put all of our energy in developing selflessness that extends to forgiveness and ultimately peace?
 Link to the full article!

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hoping for a stable Afghanistan!

“The relationship [with Afghan army units] is definitely strained at this point,” said the American official familiar with the investigation. “U.S. soldiers have to be much more on guard if they are asked to work with them and have to thoroughly assess risk if we are to continue to do operations with them.”

After a decade of "fighting" with them - or for them - or beside them - "insider" attacks not from the Taliban against American troops have become more pervasive, says this report.

Insider attacks have become the leading threat to the U.S. military’s effort to wind down the war by the end of 2014, leaving behind a local force capable of protecting the fragile Afghan state. Before Saturday’s incident, Afghan security forces had killed at least 51 NATO troops this year in 37 attacks, up from last year’s 37 deaths in 21 attacks.

Of course, as far removed as we are - it is impossible to know the details of the "why" of attacks like this!  And yet, I have to wonder if more non-military options in the past - for greater aid and benevolence toward local populations of indigenous persons, might have given birth to an entirely different Afghanistan today.

Toward eupan ~

~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.