During the holidays, it can be especially difficult to balance the frenetic pace of the season with the spirit meant to be imbibed (perhaps even more challenging when current events, such as we discussed last week, may call beliefs into question).
Agape (Christmas Sermon on Peace)
AGAPE is more than romantic love, it is more than friendship. Agape is understanding, creative, redemptive good will toward all men. Agape is an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return. Theologians would say that it is the love of God operating in the human heart. When you rise to love on this level, you love all men not because you like them, not because their ways appeal to you, but you love them because God loves them. This is what Jesus meant when he said, “Love your enemies.” And I’m happy that he didn’t say, “Like you enemies,” because there are some people that I find it pretty difficult to like. Liking is an affectionate emotion, and I can’t like anybody who would bomb my home. I can’t like anybody who would exploit me. I can’t like anybody who would trample over me with injustices. I can’t like them. I can’t like anybody who threatens to kill me day in and day out. But Jesus reminds us that love is greater than liking. Love is understanding, creative, redemptive good will toward all men.
Sunday. December 23, 2012 ~
How NVC May Complement Our Spiritual Path
Q & A Session with Marshall B. Rosenberg, Ph.D.
Is spirituality important in the process of Nonviolent Communication?
I think it is important that people see that spirituality is at the base of Nonviolent Communication, and that they learn the mechanics of the process with that in mind. It’s really a spiritual practice that I am trying to show as a way of life. Even though we don’t mention this, people get seduced by the practice. Even if they practice this as a mechanical technique, they start to experience things between themselves and other people they weren’t able to experience before. So eventually they come to the spirituality of the process. They begin to see that it’s more than a communication process and realize it’s really an attempt to manifest a certain spirituality. So I have tried to integrate the spirituality into the training in a way that meets my need not to destroy the beauty of it through abstract philosophizing.
What does God mean to you?
I need a way to think of God that would work for me, other words or ways to look at this beauty, this powerful energy, and so my name for God is “Beloved Divine Energy.” For a while it was just Divine Energy but then I was reading some of the Eastern religions, and Eastern poets, and I loved how they had this personal, loving connection with this Energy. And I found that it added to me to call it “Beloved” Divine Energy. To me this Beloved Divine Energy is life, connection to life… (continues)
Spirituality is a word that gets thrown around a bit. Tragically a disconnected calm can be mistaken for spirituality. In my own practice of Zen this is a common trap.
Again and again I have caught myself in the trap of living from an idea or ideal rather from what’s real and alive in the moment.
Honoring life by experiencing what’s alive in the moment fully in body and heart is the spirituality of NVC as I know it. (continues…)
Beneath courtesy of Miki Kashtan’s “Theoretical Underpinings” course:
NVC and Other Modalities
1. Is there another practice you engage in that is very important to you, or another philosophy/idea that you’re influenced by or engaged with? If yes, what is it? If no and you’d like to participate in this activity, choose another practice/philosophy that you’d like more clarity about how it relates with NVC (even if you’re not personally engaged with it).
2. Share core principles of that practice and any areas that are overlapping and/or reinforcing of NVC principles. (You can use the table below if it’s helpful to you.)
Principles of Buddhism: Right Speech
Relevant principle(s) of NVC:
Focus on self-responsibility and compassion
Discussion of “right speech” and NVC via | it’s all yoga, baby | roseanne harvey
Judith Hanson Lasater has made vast and essential contributions to yoga in North America. She has been teaching since 1971, is one of the founders of Yoga Journal, and writes extensively on the therapeutic and restorative applications of the practice.
Her asana-related work is highly regarded and esteemed. However, one of her most significant offerings to modern yoga is often overlooked. What We Say Matters: Practicing Nonviolent Communication (Rodmell Press, 2009) is a slim volume she co-authored with Ike K. Lasater. Nonviolent Communication (NVC) is a process of communication designed to improve compassionate connection to others. Developed by Marshall Rosenburg in the 1960s, NVC is based on self-empathy, empathy and honest self-expression.
What We Say Matters bridges the gap between some of the principles we learn in yoga – particularly satya (truth) and ahimsa (nonviolence) – and the real world application of these principles. I had the opportunity to ask Lasater about the key themes in the book, including how speech can be a spiritual practice… (continues )
The quality of mercy is not strain’d,
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.