Dove with Branch
July 29, 2013 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk
Dear Peacemaker,


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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, I am a secretary and my boss often asks me to stay late as he needs to write a letter he couldn't get to sooner or to finish something he has given me to do at the last minute. I have children who come home from school that I must be there to care for so this is a real problem me. This creates a lot of tension and affects my attitude at work and home. What can I say to him when he asks me to stay late to help him? - April in WA


Dear April, I assume that you are not required to stay by your work agreement. If staying is voluntary on your part you can simply say no. I suggest that you explain why you are unable to stay, adding that you would like to help but can't in this way. Perhaps you can suggest possible ways to solve the problem such as notice and extra money for a child care. Try not to be stressed by his request as it will affect your work relationship. "Think," - he has a right to ask - I have a right to say no - and let it go. - the Dean


Dear Dean, My wife and I drive to and from work together as we work for the same company. When we get home at night she wants to unwind and spend some "quality time" with the kids before she prepares dinner. We get home at four and we never eat before eight. The problem is that by that time I am starving. How can I get her to fix dinner first and then play with the kids? - Charles in CO


Dear Charles, You don't mention that the kids are complaining. It looks like this arrangement is working well for everyone but you. Unless you had an agreement about this with her that she is not honoring it seems you have little to complain about. Have a family conference and find a solution that will work well for the family. Having a snack or preparing your own meal should not be out of the question. Maybe they would like having dinner on your schedule if you prepared it. - 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

We humans are creative people. It is a well established physiological principle that we are able to create what we are able to envision. In other words; once we believe something is possible we keep working until we find a way to accomplish it. In aviation for example we have advanced from the Wright brothers to visiting the moon, and beyond. Why did we do this? It is because we believed it was possible. When we want something bad enough we keep working at it until we find a way. For example; Edison and the light bulb is an often repeated story in the realm of invention.


We have been slow to learn that we have the same control over our emotional processes as we do our mental processes. When we realize we have control over our emotional processes and learn how to do this we will find the way to peace, if we desire peace. We must begin the quest for peace by learning how to take control of our emotional process and make decisions in our own long range best interest.


The second part of the equation is for enough people to realize that peace is in their own best interest. Somehow we have equated the idea of freedom without peace and power to have what we want without the consideration of others as the primary good; and that peace must be sacrificed in this quest. When we learn to enjoy walking and visiting with our diverse neighbors on a two way street we will be ready to "discover" peace. In the meantime let's learn that to quit hurting each other is in our own best interest.


Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Once we are aware of how to change the way we process incoming information, change our beliefs, change our biases (ways of looking at things), we are still left with one major problem. That is our memories. Our memories are all of the things that happened to us in our life. Every memory comes with a judgment attached to it. The problem we have is that the judgment attached to a memory affects how we look at new events when they occur. For example, we may have a relative or friend who was killed in an avalanche. We may then transfer that to a fear of snow, or a distrust of weather forecasters.


We can actually revisit those old memories that are upsetting to us, and change the way we feel and think about them today. Some people tend to do this naturally. People who tend to be always positive or always negative have applied their particular bias when looking at old memories, in a way that agrees with the way they want to look at things. If you like someone you tend to forget that they teased you and upset you when you were young. If you don't like them because they teased you, you may forget that they always brought you gifts when they visited.


We can pay attention to old memories and change the ones that still have negative feelings attached so that they no longer do. In dealing with existing positive and negative charges on our memories our goal is to remove or diminish negative emotional charges and develop and intensify as many positive charges as possible. If this makes you feel like a Pollyanna, remember she was the happy one, she only seems unrealistic to unhappy people.


Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Think about a person that you dislike and think of all the positive things you can about that person. List at least three.


Tuesday: Acknowledge the person from your past for their good qualities and make a decision to no longer dislike them.


Wednesday: Forgive and release all the negative memories you hold about the person you have chosen.


Thursday: Carry out this process for all people that you still hold negative memories about.


Friday: Carry out this pro

cess for all entities and ideologies that you hold negative emotions about.

Saturday: Resolve to always release any negative emotions that you find in your memory.


Sunday: Resolve to intensify and enjoy your positive emotional memories.


Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of Life Without Anger 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 conduct workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops 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."


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