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Campus protests and using the RRP

Critical Updates on the Israel-Gaza conflict:

Thomas Friedman's important reminder that what Palestinians and many Israelis want is a two-state solution.


I previously shared my thoughts on how people and communities can tackle antisocial behavior and resolve conflicts while keeping in mind the greater good. A recent article by Thomas Friedman in the New York Times, titled "Why the Campus Protests Are So Troubling," provides evidence that the Right Relations Protocol (RRP)(included below for reference) can be used to achieve a positive outcome for everyone involved.

Friedman writes:

"This is not a time for exclusionary thinking. It is a time for complexity thinking and pragmatic thinking: How do we get to two nation-states for two indigenous peoples? If you want to make a difference and not just make a point, stand for that, work for that, reject anyone who rejects it and give a hug to anyone who embraces it."

Right Relations Protocol

Recognize the many paths to truth, resulting in right understanding. Recognize that each person, group, and nation is on a pathway that leads to the realization that they are part of the one humanity and one world. Some are nearer to this realization than others. But the destination is guaranteed. Practice recognizing (and intelligently nurturing) the divine or spiritual aspect within each, unifying each to all that is.

When assessing present national and international challenges, we can ask: How can my group(s) or nation help all parties to this conflict acknowledge and express their higher, spiritual nature (and, in so doing, help us nurture our own divine expression) and collectively materialize the common Good?

Assess intent, resulting in rightly directed intent. Ask to what extent our group(s) or nation is motivated by a more selfless or selfish intent. Practice recognizing when groups or nations are expressing as group conscious impersonal individualities, promoting cooperation and synthesis, or self-conscious individual personalities, leading more often than not to competition and division.

When groups and nations are in self-protective mode, which naturally arises in times of fear or duress, we can ask: What motivates them to take action right now? To what extent does my group or nation fully understand the circumstances and needs of the other parties to this conflict to ensure that our response furthers the common good rather than only those of our own group, nation, and allies?

Practice (loving) detachment, resulting in right action. Realize how the collective thoughts, words, and actions of my group(s) and nation reinforce separation rather than the goal of unity. Right understanding and rightly directed intention help guide our relationships — group-to-group and nation-to-nation — away from a separative diversity to promote, instead, a realized unity in diversity.

When clashing with other groups' or nations' ideals, ideologies, and actions, we can ask: What actions can my group or nation take to reinforce the other's sense of unity, motivating a change in their consciousness that leads them towards more prosocial behavior, benefiting the whole?


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