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Saturday, April 21, 2012
Ridvan - first day (Bahai )
Apr Sat 21 Ridvan - first day (Bahai )
The start of a 12 day festival when Baha'is celebrate the day when Baha'u'llah said that he was the prophet predicted by the Bab.The most important Baha'I festival.
GLOBAL REACH OF THE ARAB SPRING
The Global Reach of the Arab Spring A Dialogue Sponsored by the Institute of World Culture April 21, 2012, 7:30 – 9:30 pm Faulkner Gallery, Santa Barbara Public Library, 40 E. Anapamu St. Discussion Leaders: Johan Galtung, Stephen Zunes, and Ian Masters
The great affirmation of people power that began with what is called "The Arab Spring” continues to surge around the world. To assess the future prospects and consequences of potentially the most emancipatory movement of our time, several thinkers and proponents of nonviolent politics and Middle East affairs will lead a public forum. Questions about the sources, methods and goals of such protests will be addressed along with questions about the new meanings of freedom, fairness, power and authority that the protestors are using to promote fundamental transformations in their societies. This plenary session is free, but voluntary donations to support the expenses of the forum will be welcome. Visit the Institute web site, worldculture.org for more details about the speakers and the event. For additional information, please contact Philip Grant, Project Coordinator and Professor of Peace Studies. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org/Telephone: 805.845.7222.
The Education of a Peace Maker Philip Grant Interviews Johan Galtung
At the Institute forum on The Global Reach of the Arab Spring to be held on April 21st, Dr. Johan Galtung, an internationally known scholar and peace activist will be an active participant. The coordinator of the forum, Dr. Philip Grant had the opportunity to interview Dr. Galtung some years ago and record his thinking about principles of conflict resolution and encounters with world leaders over a 50 year period. The following paragraphs express some of Dr. Galtung’s observations. The complete and fascinating interview is available on the IWC web page. (worldculture.org) When asked if he thought that the dialectic of non-violence based on the ideas of Hegel and European thinkers was useful, Dr. Galtung responded: “Not particularly. You should rather start with a Buddhist Hindu conceptualization of karma, and stress the Co-dependent Origination Principle in Buddhism, which in Japanese is referred to as ergi. This idea is that you and I may think we are separated today by gigantic differences, but if we look a little bit deeper, back in time, we are actually united. We have to go back to this bedrock of universality whenever there is something separating us. If there’s a conflict we must step back and say, “Why don’t we sit down and talk about this?” The image I use is karma as a boat. The problems of life require us to travel in that boat together when the water is seeping in and the boat is slowly sinking. Now the good Western approach is to blame somebody for the predicament. We want to assemble a courtroom at the tail end of the boat while it is sinking nicely. A good Buddhist approach is to say, well, let us meditate first. Go inside ourselves. Then we can have a dialogue, and out of the dialogue we can decide what to do about the leaks. And while doing that, we may consider constructing a new boat. The question – Who did what? – becomes immaterial. I completely embrace this method, and so did Gandhi. At one point he even said that perhaps he was actually a Buddhist.” On the future, Dr, Galtung suggested: “Moreover, I see some kind of global citizenship coming up on the horizon. With 1.3 billion people now excluded from the global economy, and the numbers are certainly going to rise, the only way we can really bring everyone into the family of humanity is to create a concept of citizenship at the global level. This would involve a core of basic needs, rights and responsibilities that anyone, by virtue of being a human being, could appeal to, and that anyone in a position of authority would be bound to respect, as a condition of exercising that authority. We must reinvent the concept of the commons at the global level, and establish some kind of global welfare society that would furnish a safety-net for every women, child and man on the planet. Only then could we look upon the idea of globalization with any sense of satisfaction. If our civilization is to command any respect from the coming generations it can leave no one on the outside looking in. The global communications revolution could certainly assist in this larger revolution, which is much more noble and heroic than anything humanity has ever attempted before, and certainly goes far beyond the idea of a market economy.”