Non-violent relating combines the cultivation of present moment awareness through mindfulness practice, with the model of Non-Violent Communication, developed by Marshall B Rosenberg.
Although we tend to think of violence as physical threat to our wellbeing, violence often manifests in ways that are more subtle and oftentimes unnoticed. Recognizing the prevalent violence in our language is a profound first step to practicing a life that is non-violent.
Non-violence is a way of life that takes its lead from a compassionate heart and can guide us to a more complete and happy way of being. It is rooted in understanding, living honestly, and acting empathetically with all beings. Gandhi said “non-violence is not a garment to be put on and off at will. Its seat is in the heart and it must be an inseparable part of our very being” It necessitates a present and open heart.
The idea in non-violent communication is that whenever we become disconnected from our compassionate nature we behave in ways that can cause pain for all, including ourselves.
Non-violent communication (NVC) is a life-giving language, that helps transform the old patterns of defensiveness, into compassion and empathy. The intention to connect with others and ourselves is one of the most fundamental goals of NVC. It creates a foundation for learning about others and ourselves right now and in every moment. We live our lives most of the time on autopilot, reacting out of habit rather than out of awareness and presence of mind. By creating a space for attention and respect in every moment we have with NVC, a pathway to making life more wonderful (as Marshall puts it) for others and ourselves.
Once learned, the practice of NVC in itself is a meditation practice that is refined and felt more deeply over time.
Non-violent communication workshops can be run for groups in half, one, or two-day formats.