A Library About Love-Based Activism
A Library About Love-Based Activism
Illustration by Katie Daisy
By Tim Hjersted / filmsforaction.org
Dec 7, 2016

Love-based Activism is the short-hand we've started to use to refer to activism that is rooted in an underlying compassion for all beings. It is an activism that resists the strong urge we all face to dehumanize our opponents, as they often do to us. This collection of articles and videos highlight perspectives and voices of people who are striving to stay off the warpath - to not reproduce in our own activism the oppressive mentalities that we seek to change and transform in the wider world. 

 

Standing Rock Wisdom: How Sacred, Nonviolent Activism Has the Power to Succeed
Charles Eisenstein I am told by Native American friends active at Standing Rock that the elders are counseling the Water Protectors to undertake each action prayerfully and to stay off the...
What Is My Activism Really About? to Love, Serve and Remember
Tim Hjersted I have made a promise to this world that I will carry with me to my last days. It is my vow to lessen the suffering of the world while I am here - it is to ensure that every...
To See the World With Eyes Unclouded by Hate
Tim Hjersted Today is 9/11. If you asked me what my intention is for today it would be this: "to see the world with eyes unclouded by hate." This has been my goal for several years and...
We've Been Protesting for Decades. What's It Going to Take to End Police Brutality?
Tai Amri Spann-Wilson On #BlackLivesMatter, moral injury and activism
Compassion, the Antidote
Martin Doblmeier Thich Nhat Hanh has published nearly 100 books and is one of the best-known teachers of Zen Buddhism in the world today. In the early 1960s his practice of what he termed...
How the "Bad Guy" Hides in Your Mind
Joe Brewer I’m going to let you in on a little secret. There is no such thing as “the bad guy.” Every time we see an enemy it is because our minds have projected them onto the world. If...
Could You Befriend An Enemy?
3 min This is the incredible story of Daryl Davis. 
If We Want to End This World's Tragic Cycles of Violence, We're Going to Have to Do Something Extremely Radical
Tim Hjersted When every cultural force beckons us to hate, to harden our hearts and vilify the other, we must have the courage to look, deeply, with an intention to understand. To ignore...
The Problem With Judgement
Charles Eisenstein Many people have little trouble confessing to being hard on themselves, to being “my own worst critic” or to being a perfectionist. They are, after all, merely confessing to...
The Problem With Hating Our Enemies
Charles Eisenstein He who fights too long against dragons becomes a dragon himself; and if thou gaze too long into the abyss, the abyss will gaze into thee. —Nietzsche
This Is How a War Begins
Charles Eisenstein This is how a war begins “Their stupidity is amusing.” “Stopping Trump is essential. Anyone who says otherwise is either foolish or blinded by privilege.” “People should get...
When We Judge a Person Harshly With a Label or Dismissal, We Kill the Human Being Inside of Them
Tim Hjersted No person or group of people is ever one thing. Inside each of us are a thousand diverse aspects - evolving dimensions. So when we judge a person, cut off our hearts from them...
The Revolution Is Love! Our Movement is for the 100%
4 min "Love is the felt experience of connection to another being. An economist says 'more for you is less for me.' But the lover knows that more of you is more for me too. If you...
On Ending Racism and the Need for Holding Simultaneous Realities
Tim Hjersted One of the things I've been reflecting on a lot lately is the importance of holding simultaneous realities in our hearts and awareness at the same time. When it comes to ending...
A New Story for Humanity (2016)
102 min A New Story For Humanity presents a beautifully and sensitively woven tapestry of the rich diversity that is the human family. Featuring interviews on the essential topics of...
Thich Nhat Hanh: No Enemies
Thich Nhat Hanh Without communication, no real understanding can be possible. But be sure that you can communicate with yourself first. If you cannot communicate with yourself, how do you...
There Is No "They"
Peter Joseph I get a lot of emails as to why I do not bring up notions such as the “New World Order”, “Illuminati”, “Zionism”, “Secret Societies” and other popular occult/conspiracy...
Thich Nhat Hanh On Seeing Ourselves In All Beings and All Beings In Us
Thich Nhat Hanh An excerpt from his book "No Death, No Fear."
10 Things to Know About Nonviolent Struggle
Rivera Sun “There is a place between passivity and violence. I’ll meet you there.” – Rivera Sun Nonviolent struggle is on the rise globally. Neither passive, nor inaction, this...
What Martin Luther King Jr. Can Teach Us about Nonviolence
John Dear I've been reflecting on the principles of nonviolence that Martin Luther King Jr. learned during the historic yearlong bus boycott in Montgomery, Ala. After Rosa Parks refused...
There Is No One Right Way to Be an Activist
Tim Hjersted There is no one right way to be an activist. There is no one right way to change the world. There is no one right philosophy of leftist politics. There is no one right solution...
Inner Peace to World Peace (2015)
58 min Can we really create peace in the world? Made for World Peace Day, join UPLIFT on a journey into peace in this inspiring new film.
Can We Go to the Very Root of Violence and Be Free from It?
J. Krishnamurti FEAR, PLEASURE, SORROW, thought and violence are all interrelated. Most of us take pleasure in violence, in disliking somebody, hating a particular race or group of people...
Dear Activists, Maybe It's Time to Admit That We've Got It All Wrong
Mickey Z. “The first step in the revolution is eye contact.” - Alicen Grey
How a White Supremacist Became a Civil Rights Activist
Araz Hachadourian The story of a KKK leader’s transformation shows us that we need not live forever with the kind of violence we saw in Charleston this month.
9 Ways We Can Make Social Justice Movements Less Elitist and More Accessible
Kai Cheng Thom In my first year of college, I stopped calling myself an activist. It took attending just a few meetings of the campus queer group for me to realize that I didn’t fit in with...
You Can't Be Intersectional While at the Same Time Being Elitist and Exclusionary
Djuan Wash One cannot claim to be intersectional while at the same time being elitist and exclusionary. Everyone isn't hip to what heteronormativity, heterosexism, cisgendered, cissexism...
When Another Person Makes You Suffer, It Is because He Suffers Deeply Within Himself
Saddhamala “When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over.” - Thich Nhat Hanh
Misogyny and the Healing of the Masculine
Charles Eisenstein My new home of West Asheville is in the news. A local coffee shop, Waking Life Espresso, closed its doors after its owners Jared Rutledge and Jacob Owens were outed for hosting...
A Love That's Louder than Rage: The Beautiful Revolution
Jacob Devaney "At first I thought… The most powerful thing that you can do for your people, your future, your land, your air, your water is to fight and die for what you believe in. But it’s...
Thich Nhat Hanh on Loosening the Knots of Anger
Thich Nhat Hanh Thich Nhat Hanh teaches us how to relax the bonds of anger, attachment and delusion through mindfulness and kindness toward ourselves.
When Others Commit Acts of Violence, Calls For Punishment Follow. But What If We Tried Compassion?
Charles Eisenstein Charles Eisenstein has a radical idea: instead of greeting violence with the threat of punishment and more violence, let's seek understanding instead. Rather than dehumanize...
The Most Important Question Of Our Time
8 min What can we do that honors and respects every human being on the planet? What vision of the future can we imagine that is so beautiful and enticing that every person with their...
Occupy Love (2013)
85 min Join acclaimed director Velcrow Ripper on a journey deep inside the global revolution of the heart that is erupting around the planet. Humanity is waking up to the fact that...
The Emergent Conspiracy of Culture
Tim Hjersted Is mass media used to manipulate the public? Yes, undoubtedly so. Examples to illustrate this are so numerous and backed up by intellectuals like
Synchronicity, Myth, and the New World Order
Charles Eisenstein Looking out upon the horrid ruin we seem to have made of the planet, in spite of the kind hearts and good intentions of the vast majority of human beings, it is hard to avoid...
To the Youth a Day After the Election: Another World Is Possible
Tai Amri Spann-Wilson Dear Youth, On this day after the election, many are asking themselves how this could have happened. Regardless of who anyone close to you voted for, and regardless of how you...
The Empathic Civilization (Animated)
11 min "The Empathic Civilization" is one of the biggest ideas of the 21st century. The arrival of this era will be monumental. Jeremy Rifkin explains.  For the entire speech, check...
How the Brutalized Become Brutal
Chris Hedges The horrific pictures of the beheading of American reporter James Foley, the images of executions of alleged collaborators in Gaza and the bullet-ridden bodies left behind...
WE NEED A REVOLUTION: Overcoming Fascism with a Movement of Love
Martin Winiecki November 9th, the day after the U.S. election, will be a peculiar anniversary. On this day in 1938 more than 1000 synagogues and 7000 Jewish businesses were burning all over...
If Life Wins There Will Be No Losers
Martin Winiecki A Message of Solidarity from Tamera Peace Research Center to Standing Rock
The Four Qualities of True Love
Thich Nhat Hanh HAPPINESS IS ONLY POSSIBLE WITH TRUE LOVE. True love has the power to heal and transform the situation around us and bring a deep meaning to our lives. There are people who...
Could Our Deepest Fears Hold the Key to Ending Violence?
Frances Moore Lappé Feelings of fear and powerlessness are driving the cycle of violence that surrounds us. To change that, we need to recognize that we need each other to thrive as individuals.
Do You Yearn for a World of Love and Justice? So Do We.
Rabbi Michael Lerner and Vandana Shiva And we're going to create that world together.
What Makes Call-Out Culture So Toxic
Asam Ahmad Call-out culture refers to the tendency among progressives, radicals, activists, and community organizers to publicly name instances or patterns of oppressive behaviour and...
How To (Not) Change Minds On The Internet
David Cain On Facebook I quietly unsubscribe from friends who regularly make angry issue-related posts, even if they’re right. I don’t want to be pummeled by “truth,” no matter how true...
What Social Change Activists Can Too Easily Forget
Tim Hjersted I often think about this quote from Malcolm X. It's a point that really can't be made too often. Having become socially conscious to a certain degree, it can be easy to fall...
198 Methods of Nonviolent Action
Gene Sharp Practitioners of nonviolent struggle have an entire arsenal of “nonviolent weapons” at their disposal. Far too often people struggling for democratic rights and justice are not...
The Left's Self-Destructive Obsession with Shame
R.L. Stephens II Perhaps the most redeeming aspect of my father’s ministry was his tireless work to help people heal from guilt and shame. I saw the transformative impact that his efforts had...
Roman Krznaric: How Empathy Can Change the World
5 min Why we need to move empathy from personal emotion to collective moral concern -- Empathy comes in two distinct forms: affective empathy is our instinct for mirroring the...
Audre Lorde: "Learning From the 60s" (1982)
Audre Lorde "Hopefully, we can learn from the 60s that we cannot afford to do our enemies' work by destroying each other."
Get Involved When It's None of Your Business
Laura Grace Weldon Working in a retail job, you think you’ve become accustomed to bad behavior on the part of children as well as parents. But you are appalled to see a mother use an umbrella to...
Blame - an Inquiry Into Why We Separate
Chelsea Rustrum Allow me to share a few personal anecdotes… My dear aunt recently passed away from bone cancer at just 60. To make sense of her passing, I went through a period of blaming...
Why Black Bloc Tactics Won't Build a Successful Movement
Kazu Haga I admit, I laughed a little too. When I first saw videos of white nationalist Richard Spencer getting punched by a protester, I thought it was funny. And even now, I’m not...
Former White Supremacist: Why Punching Nazis in the Face Is a Bad Idea
Arno Arr Michaelis IV I see all sorts of well-meaning and otherwise intelligent and thoughtful people applauding neo-Nazi Richard Spencer being punched in the face. Here’s why this is not something...
Nonviolent Communication Basics (2000)
275 min The Basics of Nonviolent Communication with Marshall Rosenberg, Phd, is a recorded presentation of a 1-day workshop held in San Francisco, CA in April 2000.  "The purpose of...

Tim Hjersted is the director of Films For Action. 

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A Library About Love-Based Activism