urbanPEACE is a spiritually-based national empowerment initiative. Our mission is to inform, incite and empower peacemaking in urban environments using self-awareness and community-making as vehicles toward authentic personal and social transformation of consciousness.
We encourage the integration of awareness practices with social action. We develop universal practices as a shared language to facilitate greater connection between peoples of different races, genders, cultures and faiths, and especially to ourselves. We promote a culture of peace, tolerance and nonviolence, creatively using every resource available.
urbanPEACE is more than a dream. We put peace into practice.
Whether it is called contemplation, meditation, self-observation or inner prayer, the process of inquiring into our own nature to reach for our deepest sense of compassion is a practice and ideal that has been a part of religious and secular ethics systems throughout world history. It is this common thread that holds the greatest potential for reclaiming a humanity that transcends all boundaries.
We seek to inspire and reveal a modern meditation movement that is free from dogma, empowers individuals toward authentic transformation and is accessible to all.
We believe in a dynamic "New Dharma" a Universal Spiritual Law that intersects all faiths and beliefs. To that end we adhere to the same values as agreed upon by scholars and leaders of the world's different religions, faiths and spiritual paths at the 1993 Parliament on World Religions. "Towards A Global Ethic" contains this declaration:
"We are women and men who have embraced the precepts and practices of the worlds religions. We affirm that a common set of core values is found in the teachings of the religions, and that these form the basis of a global ethic."
"We affirm that this truth is already known, but yet to be lived in heart and action. We affirm that there is an irrevocable, unconditional norm for all areas of life, for families and communities, for races, nations, and religions. There already exist ancient guidelines for human behavior which are found in the teachings of the religions of the world and which are the condition for a sustainable world order."
and goes on to state these "irrevocable directives" or 4 Commitments that underlies all that urbanPEACE encourages and is itself committed to formally and in practice:
1. Commitment to a Culture of Nonviolence and Respect for Life.
2. Commitment to a Culture of Solidarity and a Just Economic Order.
3. Commitment to a Culture of Tolerance and a Life of Truthfulness.
4. Commitment to a Culture of Equal Rights and Partnership Between Men and Women
Officially launched in November 2000 by Angel Kyodo Williams, urbanPEACE was designed to be a container in which to create, develop and support models of active social engagement that make our wellbeing and fundamental perspective on the world as individuals as important as the solutions we create for the collective.
Owing to its inherent diversity, many of the worlds problems are reflected and amplified in urban communities. Often considered synonymous with chaos and conflict, the very same conditions of urban life make it ripe for explorations of cultural difference, healing and social change.
Modern culture increasingly teaches us to disengage from aspects of ourselves that we are uncomfortable with, particularly our own suffering. As a result, we become reluctant to explore and accept who we truly are outside of fixed notions of identity. Avoiding aspects of our own selves leads to an inability to forge meaningful connections with ones surrounding environment. It leads to a sense of separation that is at the heart of both personal and communal alienation.
urbanPEACE holds the belief that bearing witness to our need to be whole and actively healing the human heart is the only path to lasting change.
Our work is inspired by individuals such as Mohandas K. Ghandi, El Hajj Malik "Malcolm X" Shabazz, B.R. Ambedkar and Martin Luther King, Jr that deeply realized the inextricable link between our spirits and our condition and brought that wisdom to bear on effecting social change.
Malcolm X said that before you could organize anyone around a movement you had to wake them up---not to their oppression--but to their humanity. Meditation and awareness practice wakes us up to our humanity by waking us up to who we are.
The good intentions of social action cannot reach their full potential if the humanity of those engaged suffers from the overwhelming alienation that is the fruit of our culture of distraction. By acknowledging the need to nurture our spirits, focusing on creative solutions and cultivating the field for wholeness, we are laying the foundation for becoming the peace we want to see.
urbanPEACE invites you join the movement for meaningful tranformation.
Come get your meditation on.