Episode 32: Love & Wisdom Part II
When peacemakers reconcile relationships they deliver a bonus — people better understand Life. This is especially true when a person’s relationship with God is reconciled. When a loving relationship with God is restored, people gain an ability to see reality at the deepest level possible.
Episode 31: Love & Wisdom Part I
As a practical matter, love precedes knowledge. Love comes first. When love is absent, knowledge is absent. At first, this idea may seem strange. Ordinarily, we do not consider that we must first to love something in order to know it. Let’s reflect on how that might be.
Episode 30: Sin
We must seek a dynamic and operational definition of sin, a definition that integrates with peacemaking. What does that mean? As peacemakers, we seek a definition of sin that focuses on relationship. Sin ends when divine love is brought back into a relationship. People do not cease sinning because they know the rules better. They stop sinning because they want to love more.
Episode 29: “I” Messages
One way we avoid threatening Face is by using “I” messages. These messages describe how a situation or event made you feel. They are your personal, interior accounts of the conflict. Ordinarily, you would make statements that seem to accuse the other person. You might say, “you did this or you did that.” But, now, with an “I” message, you replace the words “you did” with “I felt.”
Episode 27: Deception, Part III
How does a peacemaker know a Destructive Hidden Influence is at work? Evidence is found in the irrational or illogical fears expressed by parties. Evidence is found in the distrust that lingers when it should have dissipated. Evidence lies in the damaged relationship that is unusually difficult to heal. Fear, distrust, and hostility are signs of a Destructive Hidden Influence.
Episode 26: Deception – Part II
In the previous episode, I introduced Destructive Hidden Influences, covert agents that foster fear and distrust. The prototype was the Serpent, also known as the Deceiver, introduced in Genesis. In this episode I will explore how the Destructive Hidden Influence — the most significant barrier to resolving conflict.
Episode 25: Deception – Part I
The first instance of a Destructive Hidden Influence, the prototype we call the Serpent, appears in Genesis. The passage describes the primary source of all conflict. In this mystical lesson we discover what we might call Original Deception. The Serpent models the paradigm of a Destructive Hidden Influence — a covert deceiver who wrecks relationships.
Episode 22: Body Soul Duality, Part I
As we study and reflect on scripture, we discover a duality between Flesh Body and Immortal Soul or Spirit. They are not the same thing. The Flesh Body is perishable. It is transitory. Its existence is fleeting. In contrast, an immortal soul — who we are as Divine Self — does not perish. We enjoy eternal life.
Episode 20: False Attribution Error
When we create our inner story, we blame our trespasses on situations, on other people, or even on God. We protect our self-image. When another person crosses the line, we attribute their behavior to bad character, nasty disposition, or evil motives. When we mediate, we uncover missing information and redraft our narrative without false attributions.
Episode 19: Face of a Franciscan
Peacemakers must become skilled in giving this gift of Divine Face. They will want to turn to the example of Francis who spent the entire night in prayer before he traveled to meet the besieged people of Gubbio, where he tamed the fierce wolf with his prayerful presence.
Episode 14: Sculpting False Self
All conflict is the result of one False Self becoming entangled in opposition to another False Self. Each False Self is comprised of ego traits and swirling clouds of intentions desires. There is one way to de-escalate conflict: Vanish the clusters of False Self traits. Peace arrives after we scrub away ego personality.
Episode 11: Celebrating the Incarnation
At Christmas we celebrate not only the birth of the baby Jesus, but also a major supernatural event — the Incarnation. Caught up in celebrating the birth, we forget to reflect on the Incarnation, on the idea expressed in John 1:14, “And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us…”
Episode 4: Mediation Part II, A Faith-Based Approach
In faith-based mediation, when a person reconciles with God, their human relationships improve. When a person reconciles human relationships, their relationship with God improves. Secular models, however, dismiss the fundamental relationship between Man and God.