Burmese nonviolence icon and political leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been a great admirer of the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. Like Gandhiji, nonviolence is not an intellectual pursuit or a strategic posturing for her, it is a firm conviction, an unshakeable faith in the laws that govern humanity. For instance, what would you do if there were a line of soldiers pointing their rifles at you? This happened to Daw Suu Kyi. True story. She did not flinch, nor did she run or fall to the ground in fear. She took a deep breath and then a step forward, and then another one, and then another one, until she was face to face, point blank with the soldiers, who at this point, were shaking. She stepped forward again, and the soldiers put down their rifles, and let her pass. This was not a benevolent regime, either. Students were massacred in the streets; people were disappeared at rallies. Yet somehow, she was released from fear; she could not be stopped by the threat of violence. And for a moment, their consciences were awakened.
What would you need to prepare yourself to face down a violent threat with nonviolence?
The Metta Center for Nonviolence, PO Box 98, Petaluma, California 94953 707-774-6299 firstname.lastname@example.org