In 1996, Bernie Glassman and his wife Sensei Jishu Holmes founded the Zen Peacemaker Order, a community of social activists from around the world who have vowed to live a life of unknowing, to bear witness to joy and suffering, and to heal themselves and others. This pathmaking book is destined to change lives and to inspire many people to become involved in active peacemaking.
Glassman (Instructions to the Cook: A Zen Master's Lessons in Living a Life That Matters) celebrates diversity, seeing it as something that actually binds people together. This is evident in his accounts of a retreat at Auschwitz-Birkenau and a series of five-day retreats during which participants, without money or any agenda, eat, sleep, and beg on the streets of large cities. The author profiles three members of the Zen Peacemaker Order — a Vietnam veteran who mediates disputes, a prisoner who runs hospice programs, and a pioneer in the service of the dying.
Readers will learn that the spiritual practice of peacemaking involves letting go of preconceived ideas and answers, seeing places of great agony as places of great healing, ending all dualistic thinking, and steering one's life by the lights of empathy, compassion, openness, and zeal. Bearing Witness by Bernie Glassman is the most important work on peacemaking written in this decade.
For more information on the Zen Peacemaker Order, visit its website: http://zenpeacemakers.org/