Monthly Archives: September 2010

Radical Nonviolence, Liberation, and the Power of Powerlessness

  1. Human killing is an act of nihilism.
  2. Violence begets more violence, not the other way around.
  3. By whose authority other than the law of the jungle do those who kill or sanction killing set themselves up as prosecutor, judge, and executioner?
  4. War is the ultimate form of having—owning, possessing, controlling, manipulating, and killing.
  5. Just as active participation in the death of a human being is an expression of life’s meaninglessness, so too is the passive approval of state-sponsored executions, wars, and military combat.
  6. Wars and executions in the name of the state occur when our sense of community gives way to our pagan lust for revenge—a lust firmly grounded in nihilism.
  7. Might doesn’t make right.
  8. There is no such thing as a just war.
  9. Wars are about money, power, wealth, size, and greed.
  10. Wars are fought not to achieve social justice, but to serve the interests of political elites pretending to be patriots, who demonize their alleged enemies so as to manipulate their minions into sacrificing their lives for false ideals.
  11. Those who fight in wars are either conscripted to do so or duped into doing so by people of the lie.
  12. Nations which amass military might always find a way to use it.
  13. The risk of war increases in direct proportion to the military power of the state.
  14. Wars cover up a plethora of political and economic problems by deflecting public attention away from the real issues.
  15. Make love, not war – share power and reduce tension.
  16. Nonviolence is a proactive approach to conflict resolution that goes straight to the heart and soul of power relationships and demands strength, courage, and discipline, not just idle pacifism.
  17. Radical nonviolence can undermine power and authority by withdrawing the approval, moral support, and cooperation of those who have been dealt an injustice.  It derives its strength from the energy buildup and very real power of powerlessness.
  18. Effective nonviolence must be thoroughly grounded in the will to win.  It involves repeated confrontation, bobbing and weaving, engagement, and complex negotiations.
  19. Nonviolent rebellion calls for denunciation, disengagement, demystification, and defiance, leading eventually to liberation.
  20. Rebellion provides us with the faith to create meaning out of meaninglessness, the energy to connect with those from whom we are separated, the power to surmount powerlessness, and the courage to confront death.

    Vive Le Vermont Libre

    Thomas H. Naylor

    September 22, 2010