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May 10, 2013

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To our Beloved Community,

And we thought 2012 was a big year.

Barely five months into 2013, PPWN has already directly exposed close to 500 individuals in Kingian Nonviolence.  We partnered with Selma’s Freedom Foundation to offer a three-week Alternative Spring Break program for 250 college students.  We hosted a concert, “Rock the Movement,” featuring Hip Hop artists Talib Kweli and Jasiri X.  We partnered with Christian Peacemaker Teams for our first fundraising event.  We helped Dr. LaFayette receive UC Irvine’s Citizen Leadership Award, an honor he shared with the Dalai Lama and President Jimmy Carter.

And we’re just getting started.  As you read this letter, Jonathan is in Medellin, Colombia conducing a Level I training for a group of Hip Hop artists and youth workers, and I am heading to Tokyo, Japan to participate in an international interfaith event and speaking in front of Japanese youth.

This summer, we will certify over 100 youth to become peer educators in Kingian Nonviolence, and they will be working with our local partners to create a culture of peace in their communities all year.  Read the rest of this entry »

Happy Birthday Kingian Nonviolence

April 4, 2013

Today, April 4th 2013, marks the 45th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination.  45 years since a bullet was fired into his chest.  And 45 years since the bullet missed its mark.

That bullet may have killed the man, but his legacy lives on through the millions of us who have stood for justice since that fateful day.  His legacy lives on through elders like Dr. Bernard LaFayette and David Jehnsen, who authored the Kingian Nonviolence philosophy to ensure that the assassin missed.  His legacy lives on through the hundreds of college students who were exposed to Kingian Nonviolence during the three-week Alternative Spring Break program we just finished up, and the hundreds of high school youth who will be trained this summer.  His legacy lives on though each and every single one of you, who have supported us in our effort to ensure that we carry on his message.

As many of you already know, Kingian Nonviolence was born out of a conversation Dr. King had with Dr. LaFayette just hours before his assassination.  So while April 4th marks the death of Dr. King, it also marks the birth of Kingian Nonviolence.  As we commemorate his death, let us also celebrate the 45th anniversary of the birth of this important legacy.  Let us celebrate how much Dr. King taught us, how much he continues to teach us, and let us recommit ourselves to fulfilling his dream.

A few of the college students recently exposed to Kingian Nonviolence

PPWN will be recognizing this important day across the nation, from Atlanta to Oakland.  In Atlanta, PPWN Founder Jonathan Lewis will be on a panel discussing gun violence with the organization started by Dr. King, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.  In Oakland, members of the PPWN community will be attending an event organized by one of our biggest supporters, the East Bay Meditation Center.  And we will be continuing to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy next week as we return to the San Bruno County Jail to work with a new group of 40 men.

Dr. King’s dream is far from having been realized.  As the community in New York struggles against stop and frisk in the wake of another police shooting (this time of 16-year old Kimani Gray), as the battle rages on over same sex marriage and LGBT equality, as the president signs into law the “Monsanto Protection Act,” as communities around the country protest the Keystone XL Pipeline in the face of yet another oil spill – we are reminded daily how far we still have to go.

It is for this reason that PPWN remains committed to living out Dr. King’s vision, and continuing to push forward towards his dream of a Beloved Community.  It is for this reason that we not only honor his death, but we honor the birth of his living legacy: Kingian Nonviolence.

Over the coming months and weeks, we will be sharing with you more news about what we’ve been up to recently (working with 200+ college students from 20 schools in Selma, working to institutionalize Kingian Nonviolence at the University of WI River Falls, etc.) and where we are going (upcoming work in Japan and Colombia, ongoing programming in the Bay Area, trainings for hundreds of High School youth over the summer).  We look forward to connecting with all of you, and helping to ensure that those who wanted to kill Dr. King’s vision missed their mark.


Join Us at Sonoma State Univeristy!!

February 12, 2013

Join PPWN and the Metta Center for Nonviolence for a two-day introductory workshop in Kingian Nonviolence!!!

Over 1,200 people attended this workshop in 2012, with participants ranging from incarcerated men and women, students (middle school, high school and college), activists, former city mayors, anarchists, meditation teachers, school teachers, and people from every walk of life.  Each walked away having learned a skill that will help them with whatever conflicts they are dealing with in their lives and in their work.

Find out more about Kingian Nonviolence here.  These workshops are offered on a gift economics basis, so no one will be turned away due to a lack of funds.

Come join us!

Two-Day Kingian Nonviolence Workshop
Sonoma State University (register for exact location)
Sat & Sun, February 23rd & 24th
10AM – 6PM both days
Cost: Gift Economics (No one turned away due to lack of funds)
Register Here!!!

Carpools are being organized from the Bay Area.
Contact or (510) 967-4710 for more info.

Thank you UC Irvine!

February 7, 2013

L to R, Globe, Doc, Kazu and UCI student leader Angelina Dayfallah

At the end of January, PPWN was able to join our chair Dr. Bernard Lafayette at the University of CA Irvine, as he received the prestigious Citizen Peacebuilding Award, an honor that has previously gone to the Dalai Lama, President Jimmy Carter, and Mikhail Gorbachev.  During the trip, we were able to help with two workshops, one for students and another for faculty, and Doc was able to present to two classes in addition to the evening event where he received the award.

UCI seems very interested in exploring what it might mean for them to institutionalize Kingian Nonviolence on their campus.  We are grateful to all the students and faculty that made this all possible, especially student leader and Kingian Nonviolence trainer Angelina Dayfallah, who took the lead in organizing all of the events.  We look forward to working with UCI in the future to continue to expand our Beloved Community!

Check out videos of Doc’s presentations below.

Highlights of Doc’s speech before receiving the award

Full speech and presentation of the award

Doc speaking to a class on community based research

Doc speaking to a class on mediation and negotation

More People! More Power!! More Progress!!!




Four More Days to Pie!!!

January 28, 2013

Peace Pies and Prophets is almost here!  Part of a national tour promoting peace and raising funds for organizations working towards it, the evening will feature a performance of “I’d Like to Buy an Enemy,” a witty satirical theater skit playing off how society keeps us in control by keeping us afraid of some “enemy.”  And there will be an auction of home-baked pies!!!

Make sure to join us this Friday at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church of Oakland, 2619 Broadway.  Tickets are a suggested donation of $12, but no one will be turned away.  This event is a joint fundraiser for PPWN and Christian Peacemaker Teams, who sends nonviolent peacekeeping forces into war torn regions such as Iraq and Palestine.

We Still Need Your Help!!!  If you can bake us a pie (or two) or volunteer at the event, please send an email to ASAP!!!

Click here for more info and to reserve tickets, here to watch a preview of the show, or here to see the Facebook event.

Come watch this great performance before going out to First Friday and help us spread the word!!!

Congratulations to our new assistant trainers!!!

January 21, 2013

On this Martin Luther King Jr. Day, PPWN got to celebrate by certifying a new group of assistant trainers in Kingian Nonviolence!!!  These new trainers will help us with our ongoing and expanding work in the local jails, with local youth groups, and with the community here in the Bay Area and beyond!

We had an amazing 5-Day Advanced Training in our new office, with an incredibly diverse group of people all coming together to help continue the legacy of Dr. King and keep working towards the Beloved Community.

Thanks to everyone who was a part and who supported this process!  Please consider supporting this work and helping our programs expand into new communities!  Click here to see more pictures from this training.

Positive Peace,


PPWN Featured in Street Spirit!

December 7, 2012


The December edition of Street Spirit is hot off the press!

The December edition of Street Spirit is hot off the press!

Street Spirit is a monthly news magazine published by the American Friends Service Committee, and given out to homeless men and women throughout the Bay Area for free so that they can sell it on the streets as a source of income.

Two months ago, Street Spirit covered Dr. Bernard Lafayette’s visit to the Bay Area with a long interview and an article about his visit.

This month, they were kind enough to profile the work of PPWN and post an interview with Operations Director and Bay Area Coordinator Kazu Haga.

Check out both articles online below, and if you live in the Bay Area, make sure to pick up a copy if you see it being sold in the streets!  Help to spread the word about our work, support a person struggling with homelessness, and support a great magazine all at the same time!

Bringing Dr. King’s Message to a New Generation
This is how a legacy is passed on to a new generation: Martin Luther King gave his life to spreading the message of nonviolence. After he was assassinated, Bernard Lafayette picked up the fallen torch, and passed it on to Kazu Haga. Now Kazu shares this vision with the next CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

Building the Positive Peace Warrior Network: The Interview with Kazu Haga
Kazu Haga is dedicated to spreading Martin Luther King’s vision of the Beloved Community to the next generation. Rev. King believed that his philosophy of nonviolent resistance could be effective not just in the struggle against segregation, but also in the struggle against militarism, and in the struggle against economic CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

Support the January Training!!!

December 3, 2012

As you know, we just announced our upcoming Advanced Training in January.  By participating in this 5-day training, you will be able to assist trainers in presenting sections of the Kingian Nonviolence training curriculum.

Several people have already expressed interest in this training, but we need EVERYONE’s help to make it happen!  We have just launched our first online fundraising campaign through IndieGogo.  Every dollar we raise on this site will go to supporting scholarships for this training.

Please help us out by donating and spreading the word about our IndieGogo campaign with your friends on Facebook or by sending an email to your friends.  And remember, with the $10,000 matching challenge from PeaceWorkers, each dollar you give will count twice.


Thank you all for your support!

Boycott Violence! Invest in Peace!!!


Advanced Training Opportunities in Kingian Nonviolence!!!

November 25, 2012

Greetings to our Beloved Community!

Over this past year, many of you (over 1,000 and counting!) participated in one of our many two-day workshops, which is an introduction into the philosophy of Kingian Nonviolence. And many of you have reached out to us since then to ask the question, “so what’s next?” “How can I learn more,” and “how do I become a trainer?”

Youth in Chicago going through a weeklong Advanced Training to become Youth Presenters

We are thrilled to hear about people’s interest in studying more about this philosophy, and the reality is is that we need you. We need more and more people to have the capacity to educate others about King’s vision of building a nonviolent society. And as our own work expands in the local jails and with community and youth
groups throughout the country, we need to expand our team to meet the demand for our work.

We are happy to announce two upcoming oppurtunities for you to go through the next stages of training!

This January in Oakland, CA, we will be hosting a 5-day Advanced Training, which will take place over two weekends. We will begin with full day sessions on Saturday and Sunday, January 12th and 13th, and continue into Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend, training all day from the 19th – 21st of January. This will include a “field trip” on the 19th, attending a workshop and panel discussion hosted at the Church of Fellowship, a church founded by King’s mentor Howard Thurman as the country’s first fully integrated, multi-cultural church (more on that below).

After participating in this advanced training, participants will be certified as Kingian Co-Presenters. This means that you will be able to facilitate certain portions of the two-day curriculum, and be able to assist full time trainers during presentations in the jails and our in the community. CLICK HERE to find out more about this oppurtunity.

Matt, aka “Rev Win,” presents for the first time after receiving his Level I Certification from PPWN.

Also, this coming August in Selma, Alabama, PPWN will be partnering with the Freedom Foundation to host a full, two-week Level I Certified Training. This intensive, held from August 5th through the 16th, will certifiy you to present the entire two-day introductory workshop in Kingian Nonviolence. Through participation in lots of small group work, research projects, role plays, lectures, video presentations and other activities, you will be fully briefed in the philosophy of Kingian Nonviolene and the history of the movement from which it was born.

This will also be an oppurtunity for you to learn directly from Dr. Bernard Lafayette, who was one of the first national organizers to work in Selma. It is a great chance for you to learn the history of the movement there from one of the people who led the organizing in that very city. CLICK HERE to find out more about this oppurtunity.

Participation is limited in both trainings, so please register early. Even if you are not able to participate in the actual trainings, you will be receiving updates soon about how you can still contribute to these trainings, and to the expansion of our Beloved Community. Stay tuned.

And make sure to check out two more upcoming events in the Bay Area!

On Saturday January 19th, come celebrate the Martin Luther King Day Weekend with PPWN, Occupy Be the Change Caucus, and the Church for Fellowship of All Peoples, the country’s first fully integrated, multi-cultural church founded by King’s Mentor Howard Thurman.  Panelists include PPWN’s own Kazu Haga.  CLICK HERE for more.

And save the date for Friday, February 1st as PPWN partners with Christian Peacemaker Teams to host a production of Ted & Company’s “Peace, Pies and Prophets: Who Wants to Buy An Enemy?”  This is a comedic theater piece that explores how society uses fear to control us.  This will be a joint fundraiser for PPWN and CPT.  More details to come, CLICK HERE for more about the play.

We look forward to continuing to build with each and every single one of you!

Positive Peace,


Doc’s Wisdom

October 18, 2012

In September, we were honored to have Dr. Bernard Lafayette visit us in the Bay Area.  He joined us as we visited three pods inside the San Bruno County Jail to visit with 150 men, and we were joined by about 150 more from the community that evening to celebrate the International Day of Peace.

Here are the videos of both events.  Doc speaks on a variety of topics, including stories from his time spent organizing with Martin Luther King, on the meaning of the concept of “turning the other cheek,” the importance of working with youth, and much more.

Part 1 of the jail visit – Openings, testimonials and poetry performances from the men.
Part 2 of the jail visit – Dr. Lafayette’s Presentation, Q & A, and comments from the men.

Part 1 of the evening event – Openings, stories and poetry performances from local youth, stories and updates from PPWN.
Part 2 of the evening event – Dr. Lafayette’s presentation and Q&A from the crowd.