Nonviolence – What it means to me

You have gone through “Nonviolence – What it means” in the words of some of its most eminent practitioners. You may have possibly read some or many of them earlier as well.

But here, you read them consciously and possibly more than once. And you may have also shared and discussed these with others.

What do these quotes mean to you? How do their words resonate in your own thoughts and lives? How do these reflect or, how would you like these to be reflected in your life, in the life of your community or country?

Some quotes you would agree with or which may touch you intimately. Some others may remind you of some experience in your life or that of someone you know. There could also be some quotes that you do not agree with or your experience differs from.

“Nonviolence – What it means to me” – is just some suggestions or questions for you to just ponder over. Therein will lie the seeds of a better tomorrow that we can together nourish and work towards.

Think over –

  • What do these quotations mean to you?
  • Do these quotations help in your understanding of violence and nonviolence? How?
  • If you were asked to use these quotations, how would you use them?
  • If you were to choose three quotations for use – which would you choose? And why?
  • Have you experienced violence? What was your response?
  • If something similar were to happen today, would you respond in a different way? How and why?
  • Have you ever experienced or know of anyone using nonviolence in a situation of violence? Think about that.
  • Can you think of one current national or global example of violence, and how nonviolence as a response to that example would be important?

Encourage others too, to think of nonviolence as a positive trait and approach.

Thank you for your interest, concern and involvement.


About Biju Negi

A writer. Working on small farmers' issues, food and agriculture concerns; and peace and nonviolence. Inspiration - Gandhi and Kabir, the poet.
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One Response to Nonviolence – What it means to me

  1. I don’t reply to all questions but just give my opinion about non violence and violence in the current world.

    I’m very inspired by Gandhi and his choice for combining non-violence with patience and courage to struggle for justice. Also I admire his principle of Swadeshi; self sufficient villages which try to produce all basic needs with local natural resources. They only trade products they can’t produce themselves. It could be an inspiration against the current neoliberal economic structures and free trade agreements. For me those FTA’s create violence in secret. Most farmers and workers don’t realize why their problems are created, but FTA’s make them compete against each other, and takes local markets and local natural resources away. In the mean while multinational corporations make huge profits.

    Because farmers and workers don’t realize the real cause is of their problems, right wing and nationalist politicians have an easy task to polarize people and look for scape goats. When this happens violence is not far away. Even more because with business as usual the current economic, climate, food, oil, water, employment and biodiversity crisis will worsen.

    Moreover, the commercialisation of the media and science makes independent information more and more rare. Activist who are aware of the problem and protest against it, face more and more repression by police and army, even in western countries. I was shocked by the repression of the Danish police at the global climate summit in Copenhagen last year. Non violent leaders of the movement who struggle for climate justice were arrested and put in jail during the whole summit. I know the repression of activists in many (undemocratic) developing countries is much worse, but even in the so called democratic Europe the situation is critical.

    We are now in the possition that good arguments are less important than power structures and the huge lobby capacity of corporations. We only can ‘win’ this struggle by building bridges between environmental – development- consumers organisations, farmers and workers movements, labour unions, small and medium enterprises. In the mean while I hope people are patient enough to stay non-violent.

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