Dove with Branch
September 22, 2014

Insights From

the Dean of Peace


Notes from the Dean's Desk


Dear Peacemaker,


This weekly newsletter is available free by subscription. All copies are available on my website.


If you enjoy this newsletter and know someone who you think may enjoy it as well, please feel free to share it with them.

Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, My parents are always helping my sister. They never seem to be interested in my problems even though she has many and I have few. They always go to her children's birthday parties but frequently don't make it to my children's birthday parties. Why should I be treated as if I was a lesser person than my sister? - Leslie in NJ


Dear Leslie, The right to receive as much support from your parents as your sister does is only in your own mind. Perhaps your parents feel you can make it on your own, but that your sister can't. They feel a different obligation than the one you think they should have. They have given you the gift of making you a responsible person. You have already received more from them than your sister ever will. Be thankful they have provided well for you. - the Dean


Dear Dean, I have an associate at work that is always trying to take credit for my work. We work on projects together then she presents them as her ideas. What can I do to protect myself from her taking all the credit and getting the recognition and promotions? - Yolinda in AZ


Dear Yolinda, Do your work as well, and as cheerfully as you can. Your associate is playing a dangerous game. Most likely she will pay the price one day. However it is not your job to see that she does. Do your best always. Most likely your supervisor knows what is going on, and the more gracious you are the better the result will be for you. Success includes much more than money and position. Stay free of her game, and trust that being positive is the only way to be successful. - 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

As individuals we always make choices according to our beliefs. If we believe that the world is a dangerous place, and that everyone is out to get us, then we act accordingly. And the world will respond accordingly. Things will always end up being the way we think they are - just because we think they are that way. When we don't believe that we can have the things we want, then we won't have them. When we think this way we create for ourselves an un-enjoyable life.


Most of us want to have peace in our life; and in the world as well. The problem is we see a world where others want to take advantage of us or rule over us. They see the world in the same way. As a result we end up distrusting the motives of others and believe we have to defend ourselves from them. Most people want to be loved but don't act loving! All we have to do to have a peaceful world is to believe and act as if that is what everyone wants.


When someone does a bad thing to another, what we really want is that they never do such a thing again. If we search together for a new way of responding we can solve this problem. When we believe that they must be punished for their act; and respond accordingly; they take it as an act of aggression, and vow to continue the fight. When they learn to trust our peaceful motives they will respond with trust and we can then solve our differences in a loving way.


Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

The most common cause of old anger is unresolved issues from our family of origin (usually our parents). Not only are such angers the most common; they are also the strongest and often the most deeply buried. We bury these angers because we don't want to keep feeling the hurt, and because we need to be able to function in our family, and in the world.


We learn a particular belief system from our families, but as we become adults we change at least part of that system, so that some of our old beliefs no longer fit. The old beliefs no longer serve us well but we haven't released them. They lead to our making poor choices and feeling unnecessary stresses. The problem is that most of the time we don't realize that this is happening.


Once you find a problem in the present that is difficult to solve look for some old beliefs from the past that may be leading you to stress and ineffective decisions. Once you locate these beliefs and their source you can then replace then with new more effective beliefs that are in harmony with your present belief system.


Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: I explain the meaning of my thoughts carefully. I do not assume others will understand my meaning.


Tuesday: I pay attention to see that others have understood the meaning of what I say.


Wednesday: When I think others may have misunderstood what I have said I check with them.


Thursday: When I am uncertain if others understand my meaning I ask.


Friday: When others do not understand what I say I do not get upset.


Saturday: When I have spoken to another, I ask them if they have heard my words and have any questions.


Sunday: When anyone tells me something, I summarize back what I think they said to check for accuracy.


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."


If you are a charitable or religious organization and would like to reprint any of my articles please contact me for permission, which will be cheerfully granted.


If you know someone who might be interested in using any, or all of my regular newspaper columns please pass this information on to them. Or send me their e-mail address, or telephone number, and I will be happy to send them the information.


Past issues of this newsletter are archived on my website.


I welcome your suggestion or comments. If you have a question that you would like addressed in the Ask the Dean? column feel free to send them to

If you wish to no longer receive this newsletter please send a reply which includes "unsubscribe" and the existing subject line in the reply.

The subject line and the address to which it was sent must be included.


Contact Information

phone: 800-359-6015 fax:541-935-9361
Join our mailing list!