Acquired Spontaneity

Thoughts and practices for personal and social transformation

Some Things I Am Learning from Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” Read More

Thank you

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

Once it is stripped of the masculine language to mean the purported neutral, which to my perpetual anguish leaves out half the human race while insisting that we should see ourselves as included, this is a truth I use as a foundation of my teachings. This is why one of the principles my sister and I included in our set of Assumptions and Intentions of Nonviolent Communication is the intention to live in peace with unmet needs. Although this is one of the most difficult practices of all, I also see it as a necessary exercise for anyone who wants to grow into nonviolence. It’s the fundamental direction that allows us to have choice when intensity, challenge, controversy, fear, or shame arise that would lead us to disengage, judge, or dominate instead of meeting life with love, truth, and courage. It is the latter three that I see as the foundation of any nonviolent solution.

What you have so beautifully described is taking place in my personal life and at work with some acuity(major move, major changes, big boulders). For most of my life I have been moving towards deeper levels of serenity regardless of circumstances...most of which are out of my control...from minor to major. Sometimes I have trouble describing my own process (to myself) so I appreciated finding this today. Thank you!

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Miki Kashtan, Ph.D., is a co-founder of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication and serves as its lead facilitator and trainer.

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