Metta’s Opinion

Spotlight: Miroslava Sobot

Currently dividing her time between Austria and Croatia, Miroslava Sobot is a multidisciplinary graphic designer.

miroslava_sobotShe has been working on Metta Center projects for the last couple of years, from laying out brochures to designing the cover and interior of Stephanie Van Hook’s Gandhi’s Search for Truth: A Practical Biography for Children. It’s simply too much for one person to both edit and design a 60-page magazine (I know, because I’ve been that said person), so we also brought her on board to take over the layout of Nonviolence magazine (stay tuned for our Winter/Spring 2017 issue—it’s coming soon, and it’s incredible!). (more…)

Faith in a Time of Shock & Sorrow


“If you lose,” the Dalai Lama once said, “don’t lose the lesson.” What is the lesson we must try to learn from this devastating election setback?

First that the anger, prejudice, and self-centeredness in this country is more widespread and deeper than we wanted to imagine. Second, that in the days to come we will have to struggle against much steeper odds than we thought. (more…)

Metta in San Diego: Roadmap Workshop!


roadmap small

Attention Metta friends in San Diego! Stephanie Steiner, Metta’s Director of Education, will be having a Roadmap-themed workshop at the San Diego Peace Resource Center on Saturday, October 22 from 10am to 1pm. She would love to see you there!

Participation is free. Register here!

About the workshop:

Nonviolence is much more than simply the absence of violence – it is better described as “love in action” and is, as Martin Luther King said, a way of life for courageous people. The Metta Center’s Roadmap is a framework that individuals and groups can use to gain a sense of united nonviolent action and begin to design a strategy for concerted action along nonviolent lines leading to major, systemic change (some call it “The Great Turning.”). The message of the Roadmap is that “we all belong here” – everyone can find themselves and their passion within the roadmap, and realize that they are part of a bigger picture. Working together, we can create a powerful, nonviolent strategy for weaving our work together toward a safer and saner future.
In this participatory workshop, we will discuss nonviolence and related core concepts, the Roadmap model, and seek to find our places within it and how our work and passions are connected. It will include building community and connecting with others who are interested in practicing nonviolence in their daily lives and work. Together, we can be unstoppable!
The workshop will be facilitated by Stephanie Steiner, Director of Education at the Metta Center for Nonviolence, Peace Studies professor at San Diego City College and Chapman University, and board member of the Peace Resource Center.
We will start promptly at 10 – please arrive on time!
Please email Stephanie at with any questions.

Gandhi’s Birthday 2016

October 2, 2016 is the 147th birthday of Mahatma Gandhi.

A time for reflection, no doubt, and today that’s bound to be sobering. Violence is eroding the human mind, body, and spirit, indeed life in general, almost—but not quite everywhere. It is just about everywhere that most people would ever look, i.e. the mass media. You and I somehow have the privilege of looking elsewhere, which gives us a unique capacity and responsibility. Let me cite one examples of the great counter force launched by the man who was born 147 years ago on this day, who lay down his life for the cause that was symbolized in the charkha, or spinning wheel, after which he wanted October 2 to be remembered: charkha jayanti, “spinning wheel birthday.” (more…)

Gandhi Searches for Truth: Book FAQs


After fielding some commonly asked questions about my new book, Gandhi Searches for Truth: A Practical Biography for Children, I thought it’d be useful to post my answers here, so that others may learn more about the book and Gandhi. Have questions about bulk orders for your school, bookstore, or library? Please email me for details:

Why is it a “practical” biography? What is “practical” about it?

Gandhi referred to himself as a “practical idealist.” He wanted to take big ideas, like nonviolence, Truth, love and equality, and work them out in practice. At the same time, Gandhi is only practical if we understand and really take to heart that he was a human being, like us. We don’t have to think of Gandhi as though he were just a figure for the history books–we can look to him to empower ourselves to be brave enough to try things differently when necessary. (more…)

Heart of a Hero: A Kids’ Camp

The following is a guest blog post by Arvin Paranjpe.

two-girls-outsideAs a parent with absolutely no experience in teaching or leading kids, I had a crazy but faintly lucid idea:  I should start a week-long nonviolence camp for my six year-old daughter.

And so I did—with the help of my wife, several part-time parents, three volunteers, and six wonderful girls ranging from six to nine years old.

I had my reasons to start a nonviolence day camp, which we dubbed The Heart of a Hero Camp.  For one, I want my daughter, and all children, to live a life full of peace and love. Gandhi believed that if we are to reach real peace in this world—and if we are to carry on a real war against war—we must begin with our children. (more…)

Administrator Concerns About NVC in Schools

silhouettes-1186990_640I’ve written about using Nonviolent Communication (NVC) as a core component of a set of restorative practices and also a core component of social and emotional learning practices. In effect, all are interrelated and several school leaders that I’ve consulted with have found the three helpful for explaining and enacting parts of their behavior management and youth development efforts. (more…)