Conversations that #OfferPeace

S1 E1 | FULL EPISODE

Peacebuilding as a Family Affair

Author and educator Arun Gandhi, filmmaker and activist Kweku Mandela, and CEO of the King Center, Dr. Bernice King discuss the actions they feel are most important for individuals to undertake in order to ignite a more peaceful culture.

AIRED: April 26, 2021 | 0:41:51
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TRANSCRIPT

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

Before we get started, you know, where is everyone calling from?

I see New York City. I see Queens.

Evanston, Illinois. Los Angeles.

Definitely Brooklyn is in the house.

Chapel Hill, North Carolina. L.A., D.C.

Silver Spring, Maryland. San Francisco.

We have the entire map covered.

Thank you all so much for joining us.

Again, a warm welcome to The Peace Studio's

Conversations that Offer Peace,

Peacebuilding as a Family Affair.

Again, my name is Trymaine Lee,

and I'm honored to be joined by the descendants of three

of the greatest nonviolence advocates to ever live --

author and educator Arun Gandhi,

filmmaker and activist Kweku Mandela,

and CEO of the King Center, Dr. Bernice King,

who are coming together, as Thomas mentioned,

for the very first time to speak out together

in a call for peace and unity.

So thank you again for joining us.

Our esteemed panel, thank you.

And when I think about your descendants,

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King,

Nelson Mandela, and Mahatma Gandhi,

all giants in the fight for equity,

who showed us what's possible when peace is your weapon,

and we're going through so much right now.

It's a very difficult time.

We've seen a rise in hate, violence, and inequity.

And I wonder, how are things going for you all?

But also, when you think about the teachings of your ancestors,

how are they still relevant today

in this very tumultuous time?

Dr. King, let's start with you.

Thank you so much, Trymaine.

Glad to be here

with Kweku and Arun.

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

u know, my father saw that there were three evils

that threatened our world.

He called them the triple evils of poverty,

racism, and militarism.

And those are what he fought against during his lifetime.

And they're still very prevalent with us today.

He challenged us in his Nobel Peace Prize lecture

to look at the philosophy

and strategy of nonviolence

as an immediate subject of study and serious experimentation

in every field of human conflict,

by no means excluding conflict between nations.

With that said, as we look at these evils

that we still very much face in this world,

the philosophy and strategy of nonviolence

are still very relevant

as the most viable means of creating social change.

There have been studies done, in fact,

to show that violent revolutions

don't achieve the same type of results

as nonviolent revolutions.

And so I think his work, now more than ever before,

is critical with the state of things in our world,

the turmoil, the tension,

and even with the pause that the pandemic created.

I think it was almost a sign

that we needed to realign ourselves with the universe

in terms of justice and morality and inclusiveness,

you know, and looking at the long goal

or the ultimate goal of creating the Beloved Community.

Kweku, what do you think?

Obviously, Nelson Mandela stood up against violent opposition

in a time not too much --

you know, not unlike what we're going through today.

How do you think you could lean and all of us could lean

on the teachings of Nelson Mandela

in moving forward?

Well, I think we're leaning on them, you know,

through this concept of exploring

what modern-day freedom really means, represents to us.

I think 2020 was historic

because for the first time in generations,

humanity was united by kind of one singular obstacle,

which was the coronavirus pandemic.

And I think it really forced us all to challenge ourselves,

to look at what our purpose was, to look at what, you know,

freedom really represents to us.

For a lot of people,

particularly here in this country,

you know, the restriction of their movements,

the restrictions of their daily activities

and how they could interact with their friends,

their families, the community at large

I think really gave them a moment to look at the world

and how they contribute towards it.

But for many, you know, young kids that are in refugee camps,

whether it be in Greece, in Europe, or in Africa,

they experienced that lack of freedom of movement

for a long amount of time.

And I think my grandfather

talked about the freedom to be free

and the fact that we as humanity couldn't be free

until all of us enjoyed,

you know, the basic human rights that any human should have.

And so I've really looked at the notion

of how we take freedom forward,

how we understand that freedom is different

depending on where you may be in the world,

what your circumstances may be.

And that is not something that we can take for granted.

Arun, piggybacking off of Kweku just said,

obviously, we're going through a lot here in America,

but there's really a global fight for peace

and justice and equality.

How would you lean on the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi,

right, and how are those lessons

still relevant today in this time?

I think it's more relevant today than they ever were

because we found that violence

has not really helped us solve any problems.

It has only aggravated situations

and made divisions between people and societies.

And so we are suffering

all the discrimination and oppression

and the lack of cohesiveness in society.

So I think nonviolence is the only way

we can create peace and create harmony in the world.

We need to, first of all, find out what we mean by peace.

When I go out and speak about this,

a lot of people tell me peace to them means absence of war.

And I don't think that is right.

You know, I learned from my grandfather as a little boy

when I was growing up

that we commit violence in different ways.

And to make me understand this,

he made me draw a genealogical tree of violence,

with violence as the strum and with two branches,

physical violence and passive violence.

And every day before I went to bed,

I had to analyze and examine everything

that I had experienced during the day

and put them down on their appropriate places on the tree.

Now, physical violence is what we understand,

where we use physical force against people.

But passive violence is something that is so insidious

and so overwhelming and deeply rooted in us

that sometimes we don't even think of it as violence.

And when I did this introspection,

I was amazed that within a few months,

I was able to fill up the whole wall in my room

with acts of passive violence,

and passive violence took, you know, the form

of all kinds of things that we do every day,

consciously or not consciously, which hurt people,

like discrimination, looking down on people,

building walls between people.

Poverty is the worst form of violence.

You know, so many things -- wasting resources, wasting food.

I read inThe New York Times that the United States alone

throws away $160 billion worth of food every year.

Now, that is a form of violence.

We are denying people who are hungry with that food,

and yet because we can afford it,

we throw it away.

So these are acts of passive violence

that we are committing

because it's become so much a part of our lives

because of the materialistic lifestyle that we have chosen.

And it's that passive violence

that fuels the fire of physical violence.

So logically, if we want to put out

that fire of physical violence,

we have to cut off the fuel supply.

And since the fuel supply comes from each one of us,

we have to become the change we wish to see in the world.

If we don't change our attitudes and our behavior

and our relationships with each other and all of these things,

then we are never going to have peace in the world.

Now, speaking of relationships, you know,

one of the important parts of nonviolence

is building healthy relationships.

In nonviolence, we build relationships

on the four principles of respect, understanding,

acceptance, and appreciation.

We have to respect ourselves, respect each other,

and respect our connection with creation.

And, you know, we live in a midst right now

thinking that we are independent individuals

and we can do whatever we like.

We are not independent individuals.

We are interconnected, interrelated,

and, you know, we're all one.

So we've got to respect that.

And when we respect that, then we will understand who we are

and what we are and why are we here on Earth.

We are not here by accident.

Each one of us is here to fulfill a purpose.

And at the very least, the purpose for each one of us

is that we make this world a little better by our existence

than we found it.

And when we accept that,

then we will be able to look at each other

and accept each other as human beings

and not identify people by the race or their nationality

or their color or their size or their religion.

You know, we've got so many labels on people

to identify them

that every time we put a label on somebody,

we are building a wall between that person and us.

And every time we build a wall,

there is a potential for conflict.

And it's when we accept each other as human beings,

then we will appreciate our own humanity.

I want to jump in right there,

because you said a number of very important things --

the idea of passive violence, right?

When I have conversations with folks today, they say,

"Well, no one's burning crosses," right?

No one's being beaten, necessarily,

in some communities.

But there's this different kind of violence.

But also this idea of interconnectivity,

right, and allyship.

And, Kweku, I want to ask you,

we talk about this idea of allies and allyship.

And I wonder, from, you know,

the lessons that you've learned in life

and your pushing and your activism,

how can white people, right --

how can white people be better allies

in this fight for justice that so many black,

brown, Asian folks, and Hispanics have been pushing on?

How can they be good allies, and what is a good ally?

I think, first of all, what we need --

all of us need to do

is to acknowledge that we have weaknesses,

that we have problems within ourselves,

that each one of us has discrimination.

It's only when we acknowledge it

that we will be able to change that

and, you know, make ourselves better,

make our -- get rid of that weakness within ourselves.

We are not doing that.

The white people refuse to accept the slavery,

refuse to accept what they did in the past,

thinking that that's not their business.

They didn't do it themselves. Their ancestors did it.

But what the ancestors did, we are paying for it now.

And it's only when we acknowledge that,

then we can take the next step of reaching out

and building better relationships and bridges.

What do you think, Kweku?

You know, I was going to add to that.

I think, you know, whether you're white,

whether you're black or you're Asian, you know,

being a human who actually contributes to their society

is vitally important.

If you look at some of the great movements of the last century,

whether it is the anti-apartheid movement,

whether it's the civil rights movement,

those coalitions were made up of people from all backgrounds,

all colors, all races who had singular beliefs

around turning around injustices that were taking place.

I definitely think, you know, we've seen over the last year

a number of, you know, white people,

particularly young white people, who've risen to the occasion,

as you've said, have become allies.

But I think there is a bigger thing to say --

you know, becoming better human beings,

not turning a blind eye to something

that you know and you confront every day,

something that you may see in the media

or you may see up close and personal in your communities.

I think there's a huge role, ultimately,

for all of us to play.

And, you know, I think proactively

going into our societies and, as Arun said,

realizing that we are interconnected

and realizing that we can have a positive effect

on our communities.

Dr. King, we are in such a polarized,

divided time right now.

And I wonder, when you think about your father's work

and the Beloved Community and allyship, right,

cross-cultural but also cross-class, right,

are we in position to actually achieve that goal?

I mean, given just how divided we are,

I mean, the gap between us seems wider now than ever.

You know, I think the way that we have to start

is what Kweku just said and what Arun alluded to --

mentioned earlier, and that is this whole concept

of understanding our interconnectedness

and interrelatedness.

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

We as a world, and in particular the United States of America,

have been heavily fed this notion of individualism,

and so there are those of us who understand

the interrelatedness and the interconnectedness of life

that have to keep educating people on that notion.

Because when you have that frame of reference,

you approach everything from,

"This is an issue that is facing our human family."

It's not a black issue or white issue.

You know, it's not a gender issue.

It's not a class issue.

This is an issue of humanity.

And we, as my father said,

must learn to live together as brothers and sisters,

or together we'll be forced to perish as fools.

And so it changes your positioning

when you're looking at things, and as you approach things,

you don't see that person as an enemy.

You see that person as a member of your human family,

and as a member of your human family,

you learn to -- you're in that posture

of seeking to learn and understand those differences

and you strip away those things that we approach life with.

Too many of us today have allowed --

in our country, we have allowed our politics

to bleed into our everyday life.

And what I mean by that is we approach life as,

"I'm blue or red," you know, "I'm Republican or Democrat,"

"I'm liberal -- liberal, progressive, you know,

or I'm conservative,"

as opposed to, "I'm a member of a human family."

And so let's have a discussion

and let's connect on those levels

so that we can explore together

those things that we are commonly facing.

Dr. King, I want to stick with you right here.

What are things that individuals can do in their communities?

They believe in peace. They believe in equity.

They just don't know how to get started, right?

How can individuals across this country

chip away at the barriers set up between us?

Well, I mean, there's so many organizations and efforts

that are happening all over this country,

and instead of people first saying,

"Let me start something,"

I think the first thing is, "Let me see what exists

that aligns with my passion,"

because none of us can fight all of the injustice.

But there are things that we are very passionate about

and that we need to zero in on,

and there are organizations already working

on those efforts.

And so if we do the research and begin to align ourselves

and connect with those organizations or those efforts,

that's a great starting point.

The second thing is, come out of your silo.

We like to talk with people who think like us

and believe like us.

We don't like to deal with discomfort

and crossing those lines and those barriers

because we've already drawn a line in the sand

that we're the righteous people

and those people over there are the unrighteous people

and I need to get them straight,

instead of saying, as Arun said earlier,

we all have flaws.

We all, in the Christian faith,

have fallen short of the glory of God.

And so since we've all fallen short

and I recognize that in myself,

then I have to be humble enough

to see that this person is more

than that which I have previously

or even currently labeled them.

You know, Arun said it. We label people too much.

And we use those labels generally,

and we cut off communication,

which really is cutting off the lifeline

and the bloodline of our humanity.

And we're all dying a slow death

in terms of being humane and just as a result of that.

Dr. King, what you said right there,

this idea of self-reflection --

Even when you're in this work of peace building,

you have to look at yourself.

And, Kweku and Arun, I wonder, you know,

what lessons you've learned about that self-reflection,

and how have you guys become better advocates and activists

by working on yourself, as well as the community?

Either one of you guys can jump in.

I think I've learned to, you know,

on a kind of daily basis,

reflect on the places I've been, the people I've met,

and what that means to me and how I take that forward.

I think it's vitally important

because I think we can never stop

learning more about each other.

You know, oftentimes it's when we stop

wanting to learn, ultimately,

and we are able to label someone

or live within our own kind of prejudice

that we're not able to channel past those differences.

So for me, it's a vital -- vital thing

that I try and instill in my daily life.

Arun?

Yeah, for me, you know,

I lived with my grandfather as a 12-year-old boy,

and one of the things that he made me do there every day

was when I get up in the morning,

I had to tell myself that I'm going to try

to be a better person today than I was yesterday

and then make an effort to be better.

To make that effort to be better,

you have to have a list of all your weaknesses,

things that you think are not right

and need to be corrected.

So he made me work out a list of all the things

that I considered to be my weaknesses

and then start working on those weaknesses

and transforming them into strengths.

And I've been doing that for many years now,

and I'm getting there slowly.

I'm not perfect yet.

But I think I'm trying my best

to get, you know, upward mobility.

You know, I'm looking at this screen,

and I can't help but think about the broad shoulders

that you all certainly stand on, but we all stand on.

And I wonder, you know,

are there specific challenges to walking in that legacy

and walking in those footsteps just as advocates and activists

trying to find your own voices?

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

Who's going first?

[ Laughter ]

Look, there's always challenges, I think,

if you allow yourself to be engulfed by that legacy.

But the reality is, every human being comes from a legacy.

They have parents, grandparents

who have those expectations of them,

who've, you know, paved the way.

They've created traditions. They've created cultures.

I think you as an individual have to decide

how you want to take those forward

and interact with them, ultimately.

So, you know, I've learned to embrace it

and I've learned to embrace it over time.

And it's always morphing. It's always changing.

You know, I feel I have a duty to myself as a human being

to play a positive role in the society that I live in.

But not everyone's going to have that.

Some people, you know, just want to kind of focus on themselves.

And that's okay, too.

Dr. King?

For me, what has been helpful, because he's already said it,

I mean, you're going to have those challenges

that are your own internal challenges

related to expectations,

and then there are the external challenges of people.

And so when I was growing up,

my mother used to say to us quite often,

she said, "You don't have to be me.

You don't have to be your father.

But whatever you do in this life,

just be your best self."

And so whenever I'm faced

with those external and internal pressures

and expectations,

I always resort back to those words.

And I'm able to feel more comfort in my own skin

and know that I'm being the best Bernice that I can be.

At the same time,

I also understand and have accepted my responsibility

as a bearer of this legacy, gladly so and humbly so,

because I know that there is further work

that has to be done to advance the legacy.

And so every day that's what I'm focused on,

and I do it to my best ability.

Arun?

Well, when I was a teenager,

I found the legacy to be very difficult to bear,

and I told my mother one day I said, "I don't know

how I'm going to work through life with this legacy,

which is already becoming a burden on me."

And she told me, she said, "It's up to you.

If you consider this legacy to be a burden,

it's just going to get heavier and heavier as you grow older.

But if you consider this legacy to be a light

that is illuminating the path ahead for you,

you will find it easier to deal with it."

And so since then, I've been looking at this legacy

as a light that is showing me the way.

And I think that has made it very easy for me to accept it.

You know, all of you are pushing in your own way,

in your own direction all for peace,

and you have to be hopeful, I'd imagine, to continue

the work every single day.

But I wonder, are there times where

the burden of pushing -- the burden

of pushing ideals of peace just feel heavy, almost too heavy?

Dr. King, have you had a time when you struggled

with being hopeful in the face of everything

that we're going through?

Oh, of course. If I didn't, I wouldn't be human.

You know, that's an everyday push.

You know, you wake up.

Before you wake up, you're going to bed,

and if you're like me,

sometimes you're looking through social media

and you see things, you read things

and then you wake up to dismal circumstances.

And, you know, just like today

or last night in Minnesota, while this trial's going on,

there's another Black young man that's killed.

But what gives me hope amidst all of this

is what I know that has happened in our past.

We've gotten to this place in spite of all of the

negativity and all of the evils.

We've got into this place

because there's always been generations of people

who push back against darkness and push back against evil --

and in particular young people.

And I'm always inspired by the voices

and the movements and activity of young people

who are very committed to creating a more just, humane,

equitable and peaceful world.

And so that really re-inspires me and gives me hope.

And when I see certain shifts and changes,

when -- and recently with all

of these pieces of voter legislation

that many of us believe is voter suppression,

others in other communities believe this voter integrity.

But for those of us who believe that it's voter

suppression, I was very inspired by

the actions of those 70-plus Black corporate

executives speaking out, making their voices heard,

being courageous.

And I was hopeful because so often people

who are in positions like that are very quiet.

They're very silent, they're very careful.

And it's a major shift.

You know, my father talked about in the movement,

one of the problems was that people

who were more middle class

and more educated in the Black community

sometimes didn't feel the need to connect to the movement.

And when you see these kind of actions today,

I know very much that the spirit and the efforts of the movement

that my father led is still alive.

And so I'm -- I'm optimistically hopeful,

I will say that, because when

I see certain things that are like a setback,

it concerns me.

But again, the force of good today is very inspiring.

People are determined to push us in another direction.

You talk about this idea of silence,

and I've heard it said that silence is violence.

And our audience is definitely not being silent right now.

I want to read one comment

that I think is just amazing from Michael Scholler.

"Such a beautiful view of Gandhi's legacy --

not as a burden, but as a light guiding our way."

Arun, when things get heavy,

right, and things get dark and you're not feeling as hopeful,

what keeps that light aflame?

What keeps you going when the adversity is thick?

One thing that I learned from

my parents and grandparents is that

when we have very high expectations, then,

you know, we can get disheartened

because it's very difficult to change the whole world,

for instance, or change the whole city or a town.

But you can make a difference

in changing one person at a time.

And so I have, you know, for several years now,

I have designated myself as being a peach farmer.

I go out and plant seeds in the minds of people

and hope and pray that those seeds will germinate

and I get a good crop of peacemakers.

So I'm quite satisfied going out and speaking to a few people

and hoping that the seeds I plant in their mind

will, you know, find fertile ground

and they'll germinate and they become peacemakers.

Literally the seeds of peace being sowed.

Kweku, I want to ask you, when things

are difficult, right, and you're not as optimistic,

where do you find a source of hope?

What pushes you through?

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

Well, for me personally,

I find hope in what my grandparents

and parents have done and their writings,

and I often go back and read them

to get inspiration from them.

I do meditation

and,

you know, just work out all the kinks

and realize that, you know,

you can -- there's a limit to what one person can do.

And if you think that you've done your best,

then be satisfied that you've done your best

and things will work out eventually.

Kweku, how do you work out the kinks

when things are difficult?

How do you push through?

Where do you find the source of light?

I tend to find it in the next generation and young people

who I spend a lot of time working with

and their idealism for the world,

their belief that things can still be changed,

that they can take on a lot of major obstacles

that we face the world, whether it be social injustice,

whether it be climate change, whether it be extreme poverty.

You know, I have a renewed sense of hope

every time I speak to them,

every time I interact with them, because they have this fire

and they have this unwavering belief

that things can be changed.

And I think a lot of times, you know, the older you get,

the more you see kind of cycles repeat themselves,

whether it be cycles of violence,

whether it be cycles of poverty.

You become jaded from that. Right?

You an start to disbelieve

that there can ever be change, right,

because you make a few steps forward

and you end up being back in the same position.

Bernice talked about it.

The fact that we have a trial that's going on

about an innocent Black man being killed

and yet another Black man is killed.

Right? You can feel like deja vu.

And so you have to find ways to keep reminding yourself

to carry on going.

And you also have to find sources of inspiration.

And I've tend to find those and the young people of today.

And you've also pushed the ball forward with Africa Rising,

which you founded with your brother Ndaba in 2009.

I want you to tell us a little bit about that organization --

why you started it, but also how you think Africa Rising

will bring not only peace to Africa but the entire world.

You know, for us, Africa Rising,

we started because we traveled around the world

and met people who commonly had misconceptions

around the African continent.

Things as simple as, you know, are there escalators in Africa

were questions that we were asked.

And so we wanted to challenge those misconceptions.

We wanted to do it through showcasing youth development

on the continent

and creating kind of a new narrative --

a narrative that was owned by young people

coming out of Africa.

I think it's so important that young Africans are,

one, able to show the pride and dignity

that they have in their continent,

but also the amazing things that they're doing.

And so Africa Rising has been at the center of that.

It's something I'm extremely passionate about.

It's allowed me to work with a number of young people

who, as I said before, have inspired me

and kind of renewed my belief and hope.

Thank you very much, Kweku.

Anyone interested in Africa Rising,

you can go in the chat and there's a link there.

You can click on it and get a little more information.

Dr. King, I want to ask you a question.

Back in 2020, you talked about the fierce urgency of now.

And I want to know, what does that mean and what's at stake

if we're not urgent in today's fight for justice?

Well, you know, when I when I look at

the state of our world today,

it seems like we're on the precipice of going

into a descending spiral of darkness

and losing our inhumanity -- or our humanity, excuse me,

and becoming more inhumane.

And when the pandemic came,

it especially gave me hope because I felt that

the stillness would allow people to really reassess

the world that we had inherited

and to begin to analyze and look at what is it that we

need to change,

how do we need to shift, how do we need to adjust

if we are going to move forward

into what I believe most people want to get to,

which is a just, humane, equitable, peaceful

and sustainable world.

But we've just been in that rat race.

And so this pandemic has caused us to be still

and see these fault lines.

And the urgency is that now

that we have this -- this ability to see it,

we have got to, as my father said,

have a revolution of values

because where we came from, albeit they're good

elements that have been

present, the foundation, especially --

and I just speak to the United States of America

inspiring to the world,

the foundation and the origin

was not necessarily the best.

Maybe there were good intentions stated,

but the actions did not reflect that.

And that's what my father was saying.

Going back and saying what you wrote on paper, be true to that,

because we were not living that.

We wrote about it,

but we did not create a society reflective of that.

And so now there's an urgency for us to do that,

because if we just take one thing

that threatens all of us on a daily basis,

all of these environmental issues,

if we don't shift the value system

and become more people-centric

in everything that we do, when we make policies,

we got to think people --

what is in the best interest of people?

Not my politics, not my party, you know, not my pocketbook,

but what is in the best interest and of the health

and wellness of people.

I'm afraid that we're going to be faced

with some very detrimental circumstances

that may be very difficult for us to navigate.

My last question, Dr. King,

your father talked about this idea of radical empathy, right?

In this time of great anger,

what are some specific things that folks

can do in their communities

to get closer to that idea of radical empathy?

Well, I think, again, what I said earlier.

We've got to come

out of our silo and our comfy place.

You know, when you begin to connect

to circumstances and people

that had not been familiar with you,

it opens you up and it

causes you to really connect

with the humanity of other people.

You know, oftentimes we've allowed our

world to be defined

by what we see and hear in the news media,

on social media.

And, yes, some people may have personal experiences

that create, you know, some negative perspectives

that cause them to back off of certain situations,

but for the most part, the only way that we are

going to have that kind of radical empathy

is that we've got to connect with people.

Dad said men hate each other because -- excuse me.

Men fear each other because they hate each other.

They hate each other because they don't know each other.

They don't know each other because they don't communicate

with each other, and they don't communicate with each other

because they are separate from each other.

And so we have got to find a way to truly connect in a sincere,

genuine way

with other people who don't look like us,

who don't think like us,

who may not see the world like us

because it can open up our heart.

You know, even the people that,

you know, are in the prisons and the homeless community.

So many times we pass them by

and we have certain conclusions

we draw because of what has been generally said.

And we might be able to gain a greater sense of -- of empathy

and even compassion

if we allow ourselves just time to just be open

to connecting to people that are in that world

that we are not in. Okay, let's go to Arun.

You kind of articulated this in different ways,

but how can we get to that idea --

closer to the ideal of radical empathy?

I think we need to build better relationships.

We need to build better communities.

You know, we don't really have communities today.

We have neighborhoods, people who live in neighborhoods

because they find it convenient to be together,

but they sometimes don't even know

who's living next door to them.

They don't care.

They come home every evening and close the doors

and sit inside with

their family and they couldn't care less

what's happening around them.

And that is not a community.

A community is where we are all interconnected.

We know each other. We speak to each other.

We reach out to each other. We have fun with each other.

And that kind of community needs to be rebuilt again.

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

And also, you have this whole concept of materialism

and morality having adverse relationship.

When one increases, the other decreases.

And we see this happening more and more today

in materialistic societies all over the world

where materialism has taken over our lives

to such an extent that we have become amoral.

We don't care about people.

We don't care about things.

We just care about --

We have become selfish and thinking only about ourselves.

And that creates a lot of the conflicts in societies, too.

So, you know, I'm not saying

that we don't have materialism at all,

but we need to find a balance between materialism and morality

and maintain that balance.

We shouldn't allow either side

to go beyond a certain limit and overwhelms.

That idea of community building.

Hopefully we laid a little foundation here

today with this conversation.

I want to thank you all very much,

and thank you all at home watching for joining us

and for The Peace Studio's Conversations that Offer Peace,

Peacebuilding as a Family Affair.

We hope this conversation was inspiring

and you feel empowered to consider the actions

you can take in your own homes and communities

to promote nonviolence and ignite a more peaceful

and just world.

Thank you all again.

♪♪

♪♪

♪ Take my hand, these oceans still have waves ♪

♪ Tell me what the water says, let it watch us dance again ♪

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

♪ Take my love, I still know how to sing your song ♪

♪ No matter where we are, we never leave where we belong ♪

Lee: Good morning, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us.

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