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Saying No to violence and meaning it


Source: www.theduluthmodel.org
Today (October 2, 2010) coinciding with the Birth Anniversary of Gandhiji, the day is observed as the International Day of Non-violence starting 2007 according to the UN General Assembly Resolution. The resolution declares it as the moment to “disseminate the message of non-violence”.  It is of course a time for us to reflect on the lives of a great soul – Mahatma Gandhi who moved the world with his Ahimsa moment.  

Back home, it is good time for us Bhutanese to reflect on beauty of living with Buddhist principles. It is time for us to treat others in a way we want them to treat us and extend our compassion on those suffering. Non-violence is not only about trying to stop fighting or killing. It is about being compassionate and kind to others, treating others as our own kith and kin. Of course all these are fancy concepts.

But let’s admit being poor farmers in a remote village is never a crime. But it is if we insult them for being poor. I was told some of our people have commented that such and such villages have no need for road or electricity because not many people reside there. He was of course hinting that those villagers actually did not vote for the winning party during the elections. Because if it happens, then one day we will be forced to experience violence and aggression –because no one is enlightened Buddha.  

Not that we are a violent country. But violence of any form should never take roots in our country. This includes violence against women. How can we be compassionate to others when we can afford to mistreat our own wives, daughters, sisters, grandmothers, nieces? How can we be nice to others’ children unless we treat our own with dignity? And as much as we have the right to occupy this world (though it is momentarily), even an insect under our feet has the right to live. I am sure, it is nearly impossible for the whole world to turn vegetarian, but if we try the goal is never far from our reach. And can we have a better time than this day to take vegetarianism forward? 

So, today it is a right time to say “No” to violence and mean it.

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