Dove with Branch
March 17, 2014 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, My husband and I were arguing all of the time. He just gradually quit talking to me and I got more upset and he just got quieter. Finally I realized my problem and started complementing the little things he did well in a caring way. Gradually he started to talk to me again and now that I am not complaining he is willing to share his problems with me and has become more loving. - Sarah in CO


Dear Sarah, We all want to be loved and we don't enjoy receiving the opposite. Your husband shut down because he didn't want to hear more of what he was hearing. When you would argue he didn't want to hear that, so his response was to quit talking to you so he wouldn't hear it anymore. If we want love we have to give love and when we give love we get love. - the Dean


Dear Dean, My husband just does not seem interested in his family. He comes home from work depressed and he doesn't want to do anything except watch TV and get even more upset about what is going on in the world. Dinner and two beers and that's it for the night. On the weekend he is off to ball games with his friends. How can I make him be a part of the family and do things with us? - Denise in NC


Dear Denise,You can't make him do anything. We all have the right to do what we want. There are things you can do so that he will want to be part of the family. Start by being loving, and supportive of his choices. Find a way to bring him back to family concerns by making them positive and interesting to him. He is coming home depressed. If you can't help him out of that then consider professional help. It is difficult for someone who is depressed to be interested in others. Administer all the love and tender loving care that he is open to receive. - 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

It is proper and fitting for us to have moral laws in our society. If we didn't do this, then we would be able to treat each other in any way we feel fit. For instance, if we felt it was justified to shoot someone who injured someone in our family in any way, and there was no law against it we would do it. In order to have peace in our society we must have common agreement on what is right and wrong. Moral law is our way of applying the Golden Rule.


A problem comes about when we decide what is right or wrong in our society must also be right or wrong in all societies. We have equal rights; now everyone must. We have democratic government; now everyone must. We do not allow age, gender or religious discrimination in the workplace; now everyone must. Perhaps these are good laws, but who is to decide that when others disagree?


There is a way that we can do that peacefully. We can create a world governing body that can decide those issues. We have a governing body now, the "United Nations." However, we do not allow it settle those issues because we are afraid we may disagree with the rules created. Until we come together as a world body and agree to resolve these issues - decide when we must agree and when we are allowed to disagree - we will never experience a peaceful world society.


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 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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