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Sunday, January 25, 2009


A message we need to hear

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke on All India Radio 50 years ago when he visited India to probe deeper into Gandhi's message of nonviolence and India's freedom movement that exemplified its success.

It has been Young India's persistent endeavor to project the Gandhi-King view of nonviolence as much more than the romanticism it invokes as a relic of the past: it is an active, dynamic and essential force for transformation. The moral supremacy inherent in nonviolence is often rejected as naive idealism. Not much different could be expected since the strategic understanding of this most potent transformative tool has barely been passed down from the generations that perfected it. And where it has its relevance debated and then ignored. But today the time to enshrine nonviolence as the guiding light for policy that places empowerment at its epicenter has arrived. And as Dr. King once said, "Peace is not the absence of violence but the presence of justice." To this I dare add forgiveness and reconciliation. I hope Dr. King's words inspire you as they have inspired me.

We will soon start laying out our ideas on how the nonviolent ethic can be weaved into the policymaking fabric of our democracies.


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