Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Peace Literacy / Nonviolence Training

Paul Chappell, photo by Tom Cogill

Recently I participated in a Peace Literacy / Nonviolence Training held at a local Montessori School. The workshop was taught by Paul K. Chappell and since I am reading one of Paul’s books, The Art of Waging Peace, I was very excited to be able to attend.

Paul is a West Point graduate who served as a Captain in the U.S. Army and had been deployed in Iraq, now Paul works with the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. You can learn more about Paul at his website

In the workshop, Paul proposed that Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, with food, water, and shelter being the most important of human needs, is actually up-side-down. Paul stated that humankind’s highest need is the need for purpose and meaning. His reasoning was that even with all physical needs met, without purpose and meaning humans lose hope and become violent towards themselves and others.

Paul also pointed out that understanding and respecting others, especially someone who is your opponent, is the basis of nonviolence. He explained that almost all human conflict is rooted in disrespect and that your best self-defense is to respect your opponent and seek common ground.

One of the handouts that we received was the “Joint (Gandhi-King) Principles of Nonviolence”, which is a synthesis of principals taught by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Joint (Gandhi-King) Principles of Nonviolence

Nonviolence means to honor the inherent worth of every human being. In Nonviolence we naturally seek to understand each other, build friendship and community.

Nonviolence means believing that our lives are linked together, that what we do impacts the lives of everyone we encounter. That we are responsible to and for one another. That we can trust one another and work toward the common good.

Nonviolence means dedicating ourselves to the fundamental rights of every human being (Justice, Equity, and Equality).

Nonviolence is courageously choosing to practice compassion with our adversaries. We oppose injustice, not people.

Nonviolence means recognizing love as the power of the human spirit to triumph over injustice, inequity, suffering; a true hero’s journey of personal-social change.

The eight hour workshop was very empowering and well worth the time. You can learn more about nonviolence training at

Mosaic in the floor of the Montessori School

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.” ~Jesus (Matthew 5:9)

Peace, Love & Light!
Kevin (Cloud)

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Forty Years and All I Got Was This Piece of Paper!

I haven’t posted much over the past three years. I have been working on completing a long time goal that consumed all of my free time. It was one of those things that started out as a path to a career but after so many years it became a bucket-list item – I just “needed” to finish this!

Forty years ago I graduated from High School and began studying at the local community college. My major at that time was Social Science with the ultimate goal of graduating from seminary and entering the Ministry, well as they say “life happens”. Now after many stops and starts, three different colleges, and a few program changes, I am able to announce (and not without some level embarrassment due to the extended time that it took to complete it) I have finally earned my Associates Degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences with a concentration in Human Services. Did I mention that I had a G.P.A. of 3.59 and graduated with Honors?

I don’t have any plans right now to start working on my B.A. and my youthful goal of entering the Ministry has also morphed - mostly because my evolving views on traditional forms of Church prevent me from accepting a position as a paid minister, but that is another series blog posts that is found here Simple Church.

I want to thank my loving and supportive wife for putting up with me, especially during the past three years that I was working so diligently to complete my Degree, I love her so much!

My current goals involve attending to some long neglected home repairs, going on vacation with the family, and getting back to promoting the Hippie Christian Way.

Peace, Love and Light!
Kevin (Cloud)

Friday, July 29, 2016

Make America Groovy Again!

 Here is my answer to all of the negativity that is spewing from the politicians and their supporters during the debates and at the conventions over the last few months.

"...And yet I show you a more excellent way ... Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;  does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things." (1 Corinthians 12:30 & 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NKJV)

Peace, Love & Light!
Kevin (Cloud)

Saturday, July 25, 2015

In Your Name

In my post CSN Live! I wrote about a fundraiser concert that I was fortunate enough to be able to attend featuring Crosby, Stills, and Nash. At that concert in 2008 I heard "In Your Name" by Graham Nash for the first time.

I commented that Nash's new song "was hauntingly beautiful and at the same time such a powerful and timely song. Graham's song is actually a prayer for peace and it nearly brought me to tears."

I have tried several times to find a video of In Your Name, and finally this morning I was successful.

In Your Name by Graham Nash

Lord, can you help me
Help me deal with this pain?
Can you stop all this killing in your name?

Lord, if you’re out there
You know the whole world is going insane
So can you stop all of this killing in your name?

Down through the ages we've all come to love
Wise men leading the way
So read all the pages in the books from above
But don't get led astray

And Lord, are you listening
To a prayer from a simple man?

And can you stop all the sadness?
Can you stop all of this madness?
Can you stop all of this killing?
In your name

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
~Jesus (Matthew 5:9)

Peace, Love, and Light!
Kevin (Cloud)