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Are We There Yet?

Mon., Jan. 25, 2010, 10:16 p.m.

Promoting peace at home

A Season for Nonviolence – a grassroots, 64-day campaign to demonstrate the power of nonviolence – begins this month on Jan. 30. The observance began in 1997 on the 50th and 30th memorial anniversaries of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. Since then, people and organizations all over the world have used this occasion to build community by “empowering them to envision and help create a nonviolent world.”

Local author and educator Susie Leonard Weller created a journal to support individuals and families who wish to practice peace-making at home. In her parenting classes, which she teaches at the Community Colleges of Spokane’s Institute for Extended Learning, Weller invites her students to read these reflections and create their own “Top 10 Tips” of how they want to promote peace in their own homes. She started this exploration with her students last week in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The 40-day reflection journal is titled “Radiate Peace from the Inside, Out” and includes quotes from the “Peace Ambassador’s Journal.” Her efforts are part of 40 Days of Peace, which is similar in scope to A Season for Nonviolence.

On Day 17 of her journal, Weller uses a quote from Mother Teresa of Calcutta: “If you want to work for world peace, go home and love your families.”

In her reflection, she wrote: “It’s often easier to love those unrelated to me. Somehow, the most intimate relationships trigger reactions no one else does—or at least not as intensely. Yet, peace begins in the home.  This is where I learn to practice forgiveness, acceptance and reconciliation.”

To learn more about Weller's 40-day reflection journal, check out her website at

What do you do at home to promote peace? How do you teach your children about the power of nonviolence in light of all the wars and aggression that plague our world?

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This blog is intended to provide a forum for parents to share knowledge and resources. It's a place for parents young and old to combine their experiences raising families into a collective whole to help others.