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The Season for Nonviolence: A Way Forward, For Today and the Future

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The Season for Nonviolence: A Way Forward, For Today and the Future

Many of us are wondering how to rebuild our sense of community as division and polarization seem to be the theme of our nation. How do we respond with love and compassion while standing and acting for essential human values?  As many of us seek practical ways to engage proactively in these challenging times, the practice of nonviolence can provide valuable and time-tested tools and resources.   

2017 marks the 20th anniversary of The Gandhi-King-Gyatso Season for Nonviolence (SNV), an international 64-day campaign held in cities throughout the world. Founded in 1998 by Dr. Arun Gandhi and the Association for Global New Thought (AGNT), the January 30-April 4 campaign spans the memorial anniversaries of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Through education and community engagement the campaign seeks to increase the awareness and practice of nonviolence in our daily lives – personally, interpersonally and in the larger community. 

You are invited to participate in the Season for Nonviolence here in Sonoma County! Many different organizations will sponsor community programs and activities. Over the next several months, we will continue to share information through the Sonoma County Gazette about what is happening in Sonoma County and specific ways that you can join in. 

Here is information about Season for Nonviolence events and programs taking place in January and beyond:

Social Action Film Series

Saturday, January 28th from 7-10 pm 

Beginning January 28th Congregation Shomrei Torah in Santa Rosa will offer its fifth annual Social Action Goes to the Movies film series, entitled Sparks of Hope – Healing through Innovation and Creativity.  This series of three films will continue on February 25th and March 25th. There is no cost to attend but donations will be gladly accepted. For more information visit the events calendar: shomreitorah.org/community/social-action/.

North Bay Community Engagement Fair

Sunday, January 29th from 12-6 pm

A North Bay Community Engagement Fair will be held at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds on January 29th. This free grassroots, non-partisan and collective community event is aimed at encouraging civic engagement. It will help connect individuals with local community-based organizations that are looking to increase awareness about social and economic issues and engage local volunteers. For more information about how to participate as an organization or individual visit the Facebook page at facebook.

Season for Nonviolence Opening Celebration

Sunday, January 29th at 7 pm 

You are invited to gather and celebrate the opening of the 20th anniversary Season for Nonviolence at the Center for Spiritual Living in Santa Rosa. Dr. Michael Nagler, founder of the Metta Center for Nonviolence in Petaluma, will be the keynote speaker for this free community event, highlighting the importance and power of nonviolence in our world. Dr. Nagler’s books include The Search for a Nonviolent Future and The Nonviolence Handbook: A Guide for Practical Action. Representatives from different faith traditions will also share select readings and prayers of peace and compassion. A Season for Nonviolence practice booklet and resource guide will be available. 

Nonviolence Education and Training Opportunities:  

The Metta Center for Nonviolence in Petaluma offers an array of ongoing educational and training options through its comprehensive website. Nonviolence educational resources include a free 8-week self-guided email course, a six-month certified training program, podcasts, books, videos, radio show and much more. Please visit: www.mettacenter.org for more information.  

You can find additional resource and event information about the Season for Nonviolence at mettacenter.org/season. 

The Sonoma County Season for Nonviolence Facebook page will also be updated regularly: facebook.com/sonomacountySNV/

If your organization would like to host an event during the Season for Nonviolence, please contact Rev. Tara Steele at tara@cslsr.org and include “SNV” in the subject line.