Dove with Branch
January 5, 2015 Insights From the Dean of Peace
 
Notes from the Dean's Desk

Dear Peacemaker,

 

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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, I am considering marriage to a woman who has two teenage children. I like her children and they like me but her concept of discipline is very different than mine. She doesn't punish them when they violate the rules. Also she won't let me discipline them when they refuse to obey, even if he is not present. Should we still get married when this issue is unresolved? How do we go about resolving it? - Jim in OH

 

Dear Jim, You shouldn't get married until this issue is resolved. The two of you need to have a discussion so that each of you will understand the other's views on parenting. You then need to devise a plan that will work for both of you. You both need to agree to support the plan and to fully support the other parent's efforts to carry it out. Any discussion or disagreement should not be in the presence of the children. You might start with the question of whether you are going to teach the children responsibility, or just to obey authority. - the Dean

 

Dear Dean, My husband's children are unruly and are always picking arguments with me and my children. My husband supports his children and thinks mine are snobs. How can we solve this problem? - Kelly in NH

 

Dear Kelly, You don't have a family. You have two families living together under the same roof. I suggest you solve this problem now, or you may need to find an additional roof. Your problem is very similar to Rebecca's. You and your husband need to get together and decide how you are going to parent, and then do it in a way that is supported by both of you. It is important that you think of your step-children in the same way you think of your own. Family is the issue, not blood. Who you live with is your family. It is up to you to have the kind of family you want to have. Happy families require love and respect from each to all. - 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

In order to become a peaceful society we must learn how to be peaceful. We learn this mostly through our education as we are growing up. We learn it from our parents, our teachers and others in our society. Before we can become peaceful we must learn peaceful ways of thinking. We need to give up such things as being upset because others have inconvenienced us or want to do things differently. This comes from our education. Our lives out-picture the beliefs taught to us by our society. We build, and use, war machines because we believe they are necessary.

 

We spend approximately ten times the money on national defense that we spend on education. Because we have not learned peace, we spend much of our resources protecting ourselves. One answer is to spend more money on machines of war to protect us. A better answer, I believe, is to develop and teach the concepts that will produce peace, and reduce our defense budget down to the size of our education budget.

 

Is this reasonable? I think so. The U.S. and its Allies spend about three times as much on defense as the rest of the world. Most of our military spending is caused because we disagree with what others are doing, not because they are attacking us. We have ample opportunity to find more peaceful solutions when we start desiring them.

 

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

If we are going to have World Peace it is something we must create together. As long as we impose what we think is right, even if we truly believe that it is right for other people, we will not find 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. We now understand enough to achieve more positive social solutions.

 

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Think about the times you try to get other people to do things the way you think they should be done.

 

Tuesday: Think about the times other people try to get you to do things the way they think they should be done.

 

Wednesday: Think about what it would be like if other people accepted doing things the way you wanted them to.

 

Thursday: Think about what it could be like if you could just accept other people's ways of doing things.

 

Friday: Think about what it would be like if you were each free to choose your own way of doing things.

 

Saturday: Think what it would be like to negotiate differences with the object of freedom for each to do it their own way.

 

Sunday: Resolve to fully respect the differences of others in all relationships in your life.

 

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of Life Without Anger 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 conduct workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops 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."

 

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