Published by Red Barn, An imprint of Wind Ridge Books
Red Barn Books of Vermont
Shelburne, Vermont 05482
The purpose of this book is to support the next generation and its role in integrating spirituality into individual lives around the globe. Books on the subject of spirituality and leadership are emerging in the fields of organizational development and business. Meetings held around the world are calling for inner reflection and seeking information for living a life filled with meaning and joy. Self-help books support people in their inner discovery of who they are and how to build better relationships. However, future generations, the inheritors of our actions, are rarely given the tools to prepare for this life journey. By helping young people now, rather than later, they don’t have to reconstruct the past. Imagine if you were told, “Be yourself. Be loyal to your inner voice.” Imagine if you were given tools to learn how to make and keep positive relationships with your fellow human beings. If that happened, we would all live in a more peaceful world.
This handbook is similar to a rite of passage into mature clarity. If there is to be a new leadership model for building a better global society it must have spirituality as its base. Spirituality is the uniting force. This awareness of how we are interconnected, needing to care for one another, holds us together as a species.
My devotion has always been to both spirituality and youth in recognition that this is the greatest form of peace building.
You are about to experience the guidance of Nina Meyerhof, an inspired and practical visionary. Her effective peace building and leadership development is known worldwide. She has guided countless emergent young leaders and her legacy lives on. Nina’s wisdom embraces cultural diversity. This extensive groundwork leads to evolved leadership. By integrating the physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual parts of our human experiences we put in balance our own inner transformational work.
We can no longer preach peace without also being peaceful. Balancing the rational and the intuitive leads us to becoming effective and strategic. This inner and outer integration is a dynamic process. We never finish our learning because people and situations around the world always change.
What is in store for you if you master the practices in this handbook is a life committed to deep listening and deep dialogue. Dialogue is a two-way process with people opening up to share their deep truth with the other.
Many of us are inspired to be a part of visionary peace work. During that process we need to learn how to prevent our own triggers and judgments from arising when in charged and conflicted situations. We need to understand our own patterns
of wounding and hurt. We need to tap into the power of release, forgiveness, and reconciliation.
This work is for the bold and courageous as well as for the insightful and compassionate. It is for those committed to learning the skills needed to guide our planet towards peace, healing, justice, and sustainability. I can think of no better way to start developing those skills than with this classic handbook for emerging leaders of every kind.
~James O’Dea, Author and Human Rights and Social Healing Peace Activist
We offer this handbook as a resource for those of you who want to create a peaceful world through spiritual activism, activism that comes from the wisdom of the heart. While it is designed primarily for youth, ages 15-30; teachers, facilitators, and initiators may also use this handbook.
Two additional pieces complement the handbook: a training manual and a reflection journal. The training manual serves two purposes: to provide additional exercises for training youth; to offer training of trainer materials for both adults and youth. The reflection journal is for youth to record their spiritual activist journey.
Our handbook introduces you to the ethics, principles, and values that are the essence of Children of the Earth’s (COE) spiritual activism. It proposes a model and techniques that have proven effective for youth to create positive change. COE’s model, Reflect–Connect–Act, provides guidance and structure. The methods and techniques proposed here constitute a learning process designed to consolidate spiritual growth and societal actions. Two approaches are COE’s contributions to supporting development and involvement with spiritual activism: Connect by Conflict Transcendence and Act by Lateral Leadership.
This guide invites you to an inner revolution for social evolution. It is a path for global citizens to unite in a movement for peace. Add your own voice and methods to make this handbook into your own personal toolkit.
Members of Children of the Earth are available to guide anyone who wants support in using this handbook. Our schedule is flexible to accommodate different needs. COE offers one, three, or five-day sessions, as well as custom-tailored programs to meet your specific needs. Additionally, you can practice on your own and all are welcome to contact us with any questions at www.coeworld.org, or email@example.com.
Thanks, Scarboro Missions, for sharing!