Thursday, 23 August 2012

Conflict involves deep transformation

PEACE cannot be separated from justice and wisdom, nor politics from relationships, a panel discussion on conflict as a positive source of change suggested. It requires transformation not just resolution. 

The conversation at St John’s Church on 23 August was one of several on conflict, violence and non-violence that have taken place over the past few weeks at the Festival of Spirituality and Peace in Edinburgh.

Introducing the theme of the conversation, the Rev Ewan Aitken a senior figure in the Church of Scotland who has also been an Edinburgh City councillor, drew a connection between the personal and the political in addressing conflict.

Maureen Jack spoke of her work in Israel-Palestine with Christian Peacemaker Teams, which was founded in 1984 after a powerful appeal by Mennonite theologian Ron Sider at a Mennonite conference - challenging Christians to show the same sacrifice for peace as armies show for war.

Malcolm Stern, a practising psychotherapist, former Greenpeace worker and co-founder of Alternatives at St James’ Piccadilly in London, has looked deeply at the nature and stages of human conflict.

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