8th ICPNA ►Plenary Session 04

Posted: 07.01.2014
Updated on: 02.07.2015

8th International Conference on Peace and Nonviolent Action (8th ICPNA)


Towards a Nonviolent Future:
Seeking Realistic Models for Peaceful Co-existence and Sustainability

organized  by



in association with


Forgiveness: Psychological Perspectives

Madhu Jain, Dr.

Forgiveness is the intentional and voluntary process by which a victim undergoes a change in feelings and attitude regarding an offence. The lecture highlights four stages of forgiveness: uncovering, making decision, work and deepening.

The lecture explains forgiveness methods and interventions, and also benefits and power accrued as outcomes of forgiveness. Moreover, it is suggested that holding grudges is harmful as it creates not only psychological blockages but also causes other health problems such as heart related issues; whereas forgiveness helps to bring about reconciliation between the offended & offender, and also restores victim's sense of personal power.

Forgiveness liberates both the forgiver and the forgiven

Ravi Kumar Stephan, Rev. Dr.

The UN Declaration and Constitution / Legislations of Nations are lame-duck in providing ‘Right to Life'. The public psyche is the fountain head of peace, which has the power to confront the issues of violence at present, which are listed here.

When the reasons that contribute pivotal attributes for different kinds of violence are found, proactive solutions for a nonviolent-future surfaces with the following interventions:

  • Abolition of Death Penalty
  • Restorative Justice
  • Project Cain

The ‘Right to Life' begins with the individuals, as “Forgiveness liberates both the forgiver and the forgiven”.

Preparing Teachers and Workers for Peace: for a Nonviolent World

Sanjay Goyal, Shri

“The well-being of mankind, its peace and security, are unattainable unless and until its unity is firmly established.” - Bahá'u'lláh

Today the world is facing the daunting danger of the extinction of humankind. The atmosphere of disbelief, disrespect and religious intolerance among different ethnic groups and nations is visible everywhere. The whole world has become a place of competition for weapons where every other nation wants to invent more advanced weapons in spite of common goods and comforts for their citizens. The gap between developed, developing and underdeveloped nations is increasing constantly. Poverty, unemployment creates brutal clashes between different communities. In present time youth is conditioned and inspired by T.V. and cinema's violent scenes that motivate them to do so. The prevailing conditions show the need for peace and cultural education for individuals in general and students in particular in Indian society. The students should be given ethical, spiritual, and peace training for their all round development. We, in such a situation, need teachers and workers for peace to spread the message of brotherhood, tolerance, and oneness. The teachers should be trained in such a way that they can prepare students backed up with spiritual, emotional and Indian values and can help in creating harmonious atmosphere in society in its aftermath. The paper, thus, evaluates the present status of peace in society and its role for making the society nonviolent and a better place to live in.

Forgiveness: An Instrument for Peaceful Co-Existence

Viney Jain, Prof.

Conflicts happen in social interactions, leading sometimes to inter-personal and inter-group offences, aggressive behavior and injuries. A spirit of forgiveness contributes significantly to peaceful co-existence by reducing feelings of anger and revenge and by improving spiritual, mental and physical well-being in both the perceived victims and the offenders. This helps ending the prevalent vicious cycles of violence and counter-violence and restoring harmonious relationships necessary for sustainable all round development.

To forgive or to ask for forgiveness, however, is not easy for lay persons. Individuals differ greatly in their capacities to forgive. Disposition for forgiveness needs to be strengthened and cultivated. Techniques appropriate in the modern context should be developed and evaluated. The objectives of the proposed workshop are twofold: (1) Review and discuss the spiritual, psychobiological, social and cultural perspectives on forgiveness and (2) Suggest feasible strategies for enhancing the disposition to forgive and to reduce aggressive behavior, especially among school children - the future citizens.

Workshop: Religious, Psycho-Biological and Social Perspectives on Forgiveness

  1. Introductory Remarks: Viney Jain, JVBI, Ladnun
  2. Psycho-Biological Research on Forgiveness: Suneet Verma, DU, Delhi
  3. Role of Forgiveness in International Relations and Peace: Samani Charitra Pragya, JVBI, Ladnun
  4. Concept and Practice of Forgiveness in Religious and Cultural Traditions: M D Thomas, New Delhi
  5. Forgiveness for Social Harmony, Family Welfare and Mental Health: Madhu Jain, Jaipur

Workshop: A Model Strategy to Reduce Aggressiveness and Enhance Disposition to Forgive

  1. Introductory Remarks on the Model Strategy: Viney Jain
  2. Methods to Assess Aggressiveness and Forgiveness Dispositions: Saroj Kothari
  3. Spiritual Practices for Enhancing Forgiveness: Samani Amal Pragya
  4. Reducing Aggressiveness in School Children by Preksha Meditation - Work in Progress: Swami Dharmananda
  5. Recommendations for a Strategic Action Plan


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