Dove with Branch
December 28, 2009 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk
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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, We have been married for eleven years. Every holiday my wife insists that we have dinner with her parents. I would be happy if we take turns but she says she doesn't enjoy dinner with my family. How can I get her to have holiday dinners with my family half of the time? - Andre in MI

Dear Andre, She may not be willing to go to your family but that shouldn't stop you from going. If you feel strongly that you should share the family dinners and she refuses you can go alone when it is your parent's turn. If you give in to her demands for the sake of the marriage then you may not have the kind of relationship you desire. If you want a relationship that is equal and she wants to be boss then something needs to change. Try to work with her to find an answer. Just letting her always decide what the two of you do is not good unless you want it that way, and obviously you don't. - the Dean

Dear Dean, I love to keep and display gifts that people have given me from the past. Some of the gifts were given to me by old boyfriends. My husband is afraid that I may still have an attachment to them. I wouldn't even think of them unless he mentioned it. I do like the gifts and don't want to throw them away. Should I do it anyway, just to make him happy? - Norene in CA

Dear Norene, The real problem seems to be your husband's jealousy. He should be working on getting over his jealousy. A successful marriage depends on trust. If he is willing to work on the problem you could help him out by giving away, or at least putting away the relevant gifts. Perhaps a compromise, such as throwing out the gifts might be helpful if he agrees to work on his problem in return. Neither of you are perfect. Helping each other to get better is the basis of a good relationship. -the Dean

I welcome questions and/or comments from our readers. Send your Ask the Dean questions or comments to: 90022 Sheffler Rd., Elmira, OR 97437, or visit www.DeanOfPeace.com. to submit by e-mail.

Law, Politics & Society ... As I see them
  Globe Magnify Glass

Two of the world's most irrational arguments: (1) We can't afford to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions because it would be too costly and reduce our quality of life. If we don't reduce our greenhouse emissions it will reduce our quality of life! This is a little bit like saying we can't afford to raise chickens because there is too big a demand for eggs. If we want to preserve our quality of life then the changes must be made.

(2) We can't afford to stop building weapons of war because we would have to close the factories and people would be out of work. This is like saying we can't stop killing each other because then we would have nothing else to do. The only justification I can see for this argument is that since we are killing each other if we get good at it then perhaps our group will prevail and many of us will survive. When we take this view the world is condemned to continued warfare and killing.

We recognize that war and global warming are threats to our existence. When we make choices that assure that they will continue we are being irrational. When we want something to change we must make choices that create the change instead of choices that prevent the change. These irrational arguments are being made at the highest level of our government. It is my hope that we as a society will recognize their irrationality and lead our government toward more rational choices.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Peace can only come from within the individual. Peace cannot be imposed on people. No matter how enlightened some concept or philosophy may seem if it is not embraced by most individuals it will not create peace. It is the nature of humans to resist the things they do not understand or accept. If a concept is not accepted by society then that concept will not survive peacefully because we humans will continue to resist what we do not accept of our own free will. Thus the great revolutions we see in our history.

However true this is, it remains the nature of mankind to seek peace. To humans, love feels good, and fear and anger feel bad. We grew up in a world where the strong have dominated the weak. In our early society, before we had laws, strength; either individually, or that of the community or nation was the way we survived. Tribes banded together for their survival. Other tribes who were more aggressive banded together to provide for themselves by taking from the weaker and less aggressive tribes. < p align="justify">

As our society evolved we saw that great power as well as wealth was to be desired. However, as we evolved intellectually we came to realize that those in power tended to look out for their own self-interests rather than those of the group. As people became more aware they refused to accept the leader of power. As the people became strong enough they began to overthrow their abusive leadership and replace it with leadership whose power is derived from the consent of the governed. That process is still going on today in many parts of the world. It is still being perfected and improved everywhere it exists as the people grow more in awareness. Gradually those governments who want to take power over their own, or other people by force, are finding it more difficult to do so.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Today I listen without defending.

Tuesday: Today I speak words of encouragement.

Wednesday: Today I am aware of how my actions affect others.

Thursday: Today I offer compassion.

Friday: Today I apologize to anyone I have hurt.

Saturday: Today I give myself in loving service.

Sunday: Today I find something special about everyone I meet.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of A Peaceful New World and many other books dealing with quality of life issues. Contact him on the web at: www.DeanOfPeace.com

Additional Notes
 

The World Emotional Literacy League in conjunction with World Without Anger and Lumbini Buddhist University has taken on the task of introducing emotional literacy training in the educational system of Nepal nationwide. In support of that program I will be conducting workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops will provide an introduction to the emotional skills training program as well as an introduction to establishing emotional skills training programs in your local area. The program and my workshops are based on my textbook "Emotional Intelligence - Taking Control of Your Life."

I have taken on the task of supporting the teaching of emotional skills training in the educational system with the trust and hope, that many in your community will be able to share in the vision of this great work, and join us in this amazing project. We are promoting a "Sponsor a School" program to raise awareness and support throughout the U.S. & Canada If you have any interest in the program and/or having a workshop in your area. Contact me for additional information.

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Past issues of this newsletter are archived on my website.

I welcome your suggestion or comments. If you have a question that you would like addressed in the Ask the Dean? column feel free to send them to drdean@lifewithoutanger.com

 

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