Dove with Branch
October 12, 2009 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk

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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, I am concerned that the political objectives of some governments have overshadowed the basic message of humanity, that we are all connected and that we are in this life together. When we say that we will not buy the products of other countries because it will not protect our workers we are forgetting our connection to all humanity. Not only do we not let them into our exclusive "club" by refusing to by their products, but we have been known to take their natural resources by "hook or crook" just to fill our selfish needs. - Marvin in NH

Dear Marvin, You are right! By holding our view of our self and our nation as being above others in the world we are bound by greed and conflict to a life that will not be lived in love and caring. - the Dean

Dear Dean, I work in the secretarial pool in our company. I will type a perfect document for someone and then they will make changes and bring it back to do over again at five minutes before the end of the day. They will then ask me to stay late to finish for them. I must work late or experience their anger. What do you suggest? - Cindi in WA

Dear Cindi, You get to choose how you handle this request. There are many considerations to take into account. Think about their needs and options as well as your own and find an answer that works for you. It might range anywhere from doing what they need done because it is reasonable under the circumstances to leaving it unfinished when the clock says it is time to go. Discussing the situation with them or a supervisor may be options to consider. If finishing the work before quitting is part of your job description, then accept the task with joy! - 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 to submit by e-mail.

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

I have been reflecting on a difficult question this week. It is; when we are an activist seeking positive solutions for creating peace how do we work with and identify with those who are seeking peace by resisting all of the violence in the world? When I seek change only by searching for positive solutions and not simply by resisting what I think is wrong, how do I interact with those who are seeking change through resistance to what is?

The answer, I think; is contained in the fact that we are all in this life together. And that includes those who are using violence to achieve their objectives. Human society has a universal interest in maximizing our life experience. Since we are in this experience together, we should all be talking to each other all of the time, no matter what the circumstances.

We should state our truth and the reason for it clearly, and listen openly and respectfully to the truth of others. We need to remember they have as much right to their truth as we have to ours. We should always respond in a loving way and be willing to accept the consensus decision of the group, even if we don't agree with it. We may continue to work for change by getting others to understand the value of the position we hold in a positive way. Let's all stand together whether we agree with each other or not! Since we will never all agree, the only way to have peace is to agree to disagree and accept the other person's point of view as valid him. Remember that what everyone wants most in the world is to be loved - to be accepted as a good and loving person!

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

You will not be able to enjoy a happy, intimate relationship unless you fully accept and respect the other person, and let them know that you do. "Never criticize or complain" is an important rule to follow. It will help you to reap rewards in the richness of your relationship. Never think you have the right to decide what is right, or what they should do, for your partner. To do so means that you are attempting to assume a position of power over them. If you assume that power your relationship is no longer an equal one.

Also, the other person usually will not happily accept your control. They will likely become angry and unhappy with the relationship in some way. If you are content with a relationship of power and fear this may work for you. If you want a relationship of love and joy asserting power over the other will make this impossible. Knowing in your mind that you are more capable than they are to handle certain things is no excuse to assume control.

If you respect your partner, it will be easier to deepen your friendship and love. If you don't, focus on learning how, because it is essential to the relationship. You bring certain styles and skills to the relationship and they bring others. You chose them for who they were. Respect them for who they are. Focus your attention on the things that make your mate special and that attracted you to them initially. Always, always appreciate that. Often, and with enthusiasm, tell your mate how much you love and appreciate them.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Think about how often you criticize or complain about your mate.

Tuesday: Realize that your mate gets to choose how they want to be.

Wednesday: Resolve not to try to control your mate's choices.

Thursday: Resolve to accept your mate's choices as appropriate for them.

Friday: Resolve to respect your mate for the person that they are.

Saturday: Think about why you chose your mate.

Sunday: Resolve to love your mate just as they are.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of A Peaceful New World and many other books dealing with quality of life issues. Contact him on the web at:

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 will be conducting workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops will 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."

I have taken on the task of supporting the teaching of emotional skills training in the educational system with the trust and hope, that many in your community will be able to share in the vision of this great work, and join us in this amazing project. We are promoting a "Sponsor a School" program to raise awareness and support throughout the U.S. & Canada If you have any interest in the program and/or having a workshop in your area. Contact me for additional information.

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