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BK Blog Post
Posted by Michael Nagler.
Michael is founder and president of the Metta Center for Nonviolence and the author of Our Spiritual Crisis and The Search for a Nonviolent Future, which received a 2002 American Book Award and has been translated into several languages.
“I see no courage or sacrifice in destroying life or property for offense or defense.” ~ Gandhi, Mahatma 6.67
Naturally, Gandhiji’s point here is to stress two cardinal features of “nonviolence of my understanding” (title of a small book he wrote): the one is that nonviolence is a positive force, which is obvious only to those who have lived with the idea and the thing for a while; the other is that that force is released by courage and the apparently negative thing, sacrifice. But sacrifice, as the Gita says (III. 14), meaning the ability to renounce what appears to be one’s personal benefit but is at others’ expense, is not only positive but what we would call the force that makes the world go round, the underlying principle of all true growth.
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Stephanie Van Hook, the Metta Center’s executive director, launched Daily Metta in 2015 as a way to share Gandhi’s spiritual wisdom and experiments with nonviolence.
Our 2016 Daily Metta continues with Gandhi on weekdays. On weekends, we share videos that complement Michael Nagler’s award-winning book, The Search for a Nonviolent Future: A Promise of Peace for Ourselves, Our Families, and Our World. To help readers engage with the book more deeply, the Metta Center offers a free PDF study guide.