VIOLENCE AND WORLD PEACE
Realising that there is a steady
erosion of basic human values like compassion, tolerance, austerity, unselfishness,
love, universal responsibility, freedom, justice and environmental ethic
which is mainly responsible for the ever increasing trend of violence manifesting
itself in an parts of the world today;
Believing that it is our responsibility
to discover the ways to avert the imminent catastrophe threatening our existence;
Recognising that non-violence (ahimsa)
has in it a potential to resolve this crisis and it is time we gave serious
thought to the question of training people in no-violent action for social
change and universal peace;
Bearing in mind that the unity of
the forces of peace and non-violence is a must to meet the challenge of
violence as enunciated in the recommendations in the Ladnun Declaration
issued by the delegates of the First International Conference on Peace and
Non-violent Action held at Ladnun (Rajasthan), India from December 5 to
7, 1988; Considering that the Second International Conference on
Peace and Non-violent Action has been organised from February 17 to 21,
1991 as a follow up action of the recommendations of the First ICPNA with
the main aim of involving peace activists, theorists, scientists, spiritual
leaders and persons concerned from all walks of life in formulating a universally
acceptable programme of action for the orientation and training of people
belonging to different ideologies, faiths and cultural traditions in ahimsa
Expressing our heartfelt thanks to
ANUVIBHA for its continuing leadership in this endeavour,
In Consonance with the spirit of the above
considerations, we citizens of the world hailing from all continents, who
have assembled here in the idyllic surrounding of Vishva Shanti Nilayam
(Global Peace Palace), Rajsamand, India, to participate in this most significant
conference, recognise that we have a common overriding goal of attaining
peace and justice through non-violent action. We offer the RAJSAMAND DECLARATION
ON TRAINING IN NONVIOLENCE (AHIMSA) for peace and sustainable development
in the form of the following observations and recommendations:
The Meaning of Non-violence
The 2nd ICPNA is a humble attempt to build
a structure of peace and non-violence. However, peace is not merely the
absence of war nor non-violence only abstinence from physical violence.
It is a holistic and positive concept encompassing all manifestations of
life and society on the Earth. It includes both structural peace and ecological
balance. Non-violence implies active and dynamic love, respect and reverence
for all living beings that inhabit this planet, attributes of equality,
human dignity, poise, harmony and resistance to tyranny and injustice.
Need of Training in Non-violence
For the past many years, humankind has evolved
and invented numerous methods of training in violence and war. We have been
spending enormous material and human resources on them at the cost of mass
hunger, illiteracy and environmental damage. Besides, violence has been
growing menacingly in different forms. The complexity of the situation that
the world faces today makes it mandatory for us to move further from the
principle of peaceful coexistence towards a more active principle of co-operation.
Hence, training in non-violence is imperative in modem times. If we fail
to evolve a viable scientific system to train and orient people in ahimsa,
we shall be failing in our most important duty towards humanity and society.
Content of the Training in Non-violence
To train people in non-violence, we must combine
the aspects of both individual and community growth and build an integrated
personality with appropriate training of hand, head and heart which will
facilitate the structural and functional excellence of social development.
The objective of this training is to enable all peoples to gain an insightful
understanding of non-violence and peace and the spiritual values on which
they rest, equip them with skills for individual and mass non-violent action,
prepare them for democratic leadership in conflict resolution through non-violence
and help them develop attitudes for harmonious living.
Strategies, Tools and Organisation of Training in Non-violence
We seek participation of concerned young people
from all over the world. Training in non-violence has both its individual
and social dimensions. It should employ such methods as meditation to bring
about a change of heart and attitude in the individuals, persuassion, personal
example, willingness to suffer rather than injure another, moral uprightness,
practice of sharing one's resources with the other, faith in the essential
goodness of all humans and regard for the basic human rights of all. The
other tools of training may include regular classes, community living, games
and sanitation. Training should encourage constructive programmes and social
service. It should also take special care of developing the ability among
the trainees to understand the pulse of the people, public opinion, training
in communications and in audio-visual programmes. Equally essential is the
training in the organisation and leadership of non-violent action. It involves
investigation of the problem, negotiation,conciliation, arbitration and
other processes of conflict resolution such as mobilisation of opinion,
planning, preparation, use of different forms of non-violent direct action
including non-cooperation, civil disobedience and fasting etc.
The Global Role of Education in Peace and Non-violence
Education is the most important instrument
of training in non-violence because it shapes and moulds the human mind.
Training in non-violence and peace should be introduced in education both
at the formal and informal levels to bring an attitudinal transformation.
We make the following recommendations and
declare that their adoption by the institutions and individuals of the world
will pave the way for a peaceful and non-violent world order.
1) UNESCO, National Government and Voluntary Organisations
working in the field of education as well as in the other areas of human
welfare should evolve a programme to introduce global peace education
and training in non-violence both at the formal and informal levels of
Follow-up Programme (a) For the proper implementation of the recommendations
contained in the Declaration, a standing committee consisting of the representatives
of the sponsoring organisations of the 2nd ICPNA shall be constituted with
Mr. S.L. Gandhi (ANUVIBHA, Jaipur, India) as Convenor.
2) We the delegates to the 2nd ICPNA who have helped in the formulation
of this Declaration take upon us and recommend that all non-governmental
organisations should endeavour to create awareness of the importance of
non-violence at all social levels in order that there might be a strong
public opinion against expenditure on armaments and war, leading to a
political determination to gradually abolish the institutions of war and
in their place establish institutions of peace.
The sponsoring organisations are as follows:
1) International Peace Bureau, Geneva (Switzerland).
(b) The standing committee shall through its convenor invite other organisations
to join them by endorsing the Ladnun Declaration, an action plan for world
peace and the Rajsamand Declaration on Training in Non-violence.
2) Centre for Global Non-violence Planning Project, Institute for Peace,
University of Hawaii, USA.
3) The Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, UK.
4) Non-violence Study Group, IPRA, University of Colarado, USA.
5) New York State Martin Luther King Jr. Institute for Non-violence, Albany,
6) Institute of Oriental Philosophy, Tokyo, Japan.
7) Xavier Peace Centre, Xavier University, Philippines.
8) Association of World Citizens, San Francisco, USA.
9) World interfaith Colleges Association, Victoria, Canada.
10) International Federation of World Religions, World Peace Envoy, Thailand.
11) Seville Statement on Violence Support Network.
12) Jain Vishya Bharati, Ladnun.
13) Gandhi Peace Foundation, New Delhi.
14) University for Peace, Costa Rica.
(c) The standing committee shall, by a process to be decided by the convenor
on the advice of its members, select from among themselves representatives
of not more than 7 organisations to act as an Executive Committee to work
for the implementation of the Ladnun and Rajsamand Declarations.