Dove with Branch
July 3, 2006 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk
Hello! - Dean Van Leuven

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Ask the Dean?
  Global Struggle

Dear Dean, The kids my son plays with at school look down on many of the kids in their class and call them “stupid,’ “jerk,” and other names too nasty to put in writing. My son thinks these kids are cool, and will not listen when I tell him he should find other friends. How can I get him to find better friends? - Mary in Salem

Dear Mary, This is a lesson your son should have learned much earlier in life. It is not going to be easy now, but you need to teach him this lesson as it will have a great impact on his life. Your son is willing to hurt others for the sake of his ego. Teach him the rewards of being kind to others, instead of just a few friends. You can start by refusing to accept that kind of behavior as okay and talking to him about the impact it will have on his own life as well as those he disrespects. - the Dean

Dear Dean, My father loves my brother much more than he does me. He takes him hunting, to ball games and even to work with him on occasions. When I ask he says those things are not for girls. I like doing those things. I am on the school volleyball and softball team, and he seldom comes to my games even though he never misses my brother’s. He says sports are not important for girls like they are for boys. How can I get him to like me? - Just a Girl

Dear Just a Girl, Probably not very easily – this is not about love. It is about how you father thinks girls should be. It is unfortunate that your father hasn’t accepted equality. Your first job is to learn to be okay with that, and not let it ruin your life. You are not less just because of his belief!! Your second, and perhaps more difficult job, is to learn to accept and love him the way he is. He believes he is doing the right thing; so be accepting that he is being the best dad he knows how. Learn not to withhold your love from him because of his beliefs. If mom is not fully aware of how you feel, talk to her about it. - the Dean

Send your Ask the Dean Questions to: P.O. Box 535, Elmira, OR 97437, or visit to submit by e-mail.

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

We have freedom of speech in this country and that is a wonderful thing. What we don’t have is an acceptance of free speech. We certainly have the right to not accept what the other person has said, and to let them know that we disagree with them.

The problem we have is, that when someone says something we don’t like we often get insulted and tell them they are wrong for talking that way. We look at things as insulting and inappropriate when someone has an honest opinion that disagrees with our own.

We don’t need to get into judgment and a battle of the wills simply because someone disagrees with us. We will be more effective in our own life, and for our society, if we simply look for the truth in what the other person is saying and respond only with our own truth in a positive way. Just because you disagree with someone is no reason to make them an enemy in some way.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Once you make the decision that you want to remove anger from your life – whether it is over a specific issue, or represents a more general anger-filled outlook – your resolve is an important first step. However, your decision will be ineffective unless you do more. It is like making a New Year’s resolution. Unless you follow through on your decision to change, your chances of successfully bringing about change are slim.

My personal plan for removing anger from my life involved the following. I first decided that I no longer wanted to experience anger under any circumstances. Then I decided that any time I felt anger, it was a response I would refuse to accept as appropriate. No if’s and’s or but’s – it was my mistake to have an angry response to anything, and it was my mission to correct it. I never wasted time trying to place blame for my anger on someone or something else.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: I recognize than any time I become angry it is because of my own mistake.

Tuesday: Each time I become angry I look for the mistake in my thinking.

Wednesday: Each time I become angry I release my anger as quickly as I can.

Thursday: Each time I feel angry I search for the belief that caused me to become angry.

Friday: Each time I become angry I find a new positive belief to replace it with.

Saturday: I practice my new positive belief that has replaced my old angry belief.

Sunday: Each time I become angry I shift to my new positive belief and release the anger.

Additional Notes

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