Compassion Through Art

The Dhammadpada says, “Never by hatred is hatred appeased, but it is appeased by kindness… One should conquer anger through goodness, selfishness, through charity and falsehood through truthfulness.”

This does not imply that one must lie down and accept oppression.  It merely points out that violence is not a viable answer, even as a last resort.–Sulak Sivaraksa

We weave many wonderful resources into our art programs and envision a series of community building art projects anchored around key wise quotes, each offering effective solutions that visually go beyond “poster reminders.” Non-Violent Communication (NVC) is one resource we hope to integrate into an art-expressive seminar. We also have heard of a program called Third Ear Project, which has gotten truly stunning results in schools with their most difficult students. It is a variation on NVC efforts and seems to work magic in frustrated, oppressed kids. One principal said that the kids had been in trouble many times per day, and in the two weeks following the program, there was not one issue. Free materials can be found at http://thirdearproject.org/site/learn.

Other quote themes to include: Tolerance of other cultures, and within our culture; building financial awareness of traps of consumerism; and sustainable solutions for the planet and the future. It’s timely to have students use web searches for ideas from various cultures, and supports the idea of creating a cohesive planet by incorporating humanities’ collective wisdom.

“The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.” – Thomas Paine 

One community at a time…it’s pretty Art Spherical! One day soon, we would like to teach another arts-related version of conflict resolution. Let us know if you would be willing to help implement classes teaching “Compassion Through Art” in communities or know of a site that would benefit from these programs.  Wonderful free resources on non-violent communication can be found here!

“To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of the arts.” – Henry David Thoreau

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