Archive for December, 2008

Instant Purpose and Passion: Take the Pledge

December 31, 2008

Here is a way a way to Supercharge your next five years and possibly the rest of your life. Have you been wondering what your purpose is that is worthy of your skills, passion, time and attention? Do you feel like a global citizen and want to connect to all of humanity? We invite you to take this pledge with us to collaborate for world peace.

This is about The Pledge Nathan and I took to create world peace in five years.  Various friends and business people have already taken this pledge for themselves.  This is adapted from our book Give Peace A Deadline.

Preparing to sign the Pledge

This is an opportunity to take a risk, based on knowing your capacities and your intuitive faith. To take the Pledge is to take personal responsibility for causing world peace. This requires honest soul searching. We don’t recommend this to anyone who isn’t ready to make that promise. In fact, don’t take the Pledge unless you know you will follow through. Only you know if you are ready to make that commitment. Taking the Pledge is an initiation that launches your life into a new level of being.

Before you take the Pledge, you may ask for help, collaboration, resources, ideas, or feedback from others, but once you take the Pledge, you are fully accountable. You are a resource. You are the key to creating world peace in five years.

Here are some of the people who did what you’re considering doing. Thomas Edison didn’t know how he was going to invent the lightbulb. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., did not know the final view of civil rights. Gandhi didn’t know how England was going to leave India when he declared that he would lead India to independence. Badshah Khan didn’t know that 100,000 Muslim Pathan tribesmen would join his nonviolent army in Afghanistan. Nelson Mandela didn’t know how apartheid would end when he began his twenty-seven-year prison sentence. Sometimes all we need is to be certain of what a vision means and let the methods.

Warning! The Pledge Is a personal promise you make to yourself and the world to create peace by 2014. If you don’t want to go through all the steps of articulating your passions and skills, figuring out your values, or aligning your life; if you want the super-efficient way through all of that, then the gesture that gets it all done in one fell swoop is to take the Pledge. This is pulling yourself through from the other side instead of pushing yourself from where you are now.

Please Do NOT take the pledge:

•  Because you feel pressured from everyone else doing it.
•  Because your favorite celebrity, political leader, or religious leader took it.
•  Because you feel pressured by someone.
•  Because you want to look good.
•  If you do not know what it is to make a promise and keep it.

Taking the Pledge

Now the time has come to step outside of yourself and to consider your commitment beyond yourself. When you take the Pledge, you make yourself personally accountable for peace in five years. You acknowledge that you are dedicated to the goals of P5Y, a global movement that will incorporate millions of individuals. You are taking responsibility for all of your actions. You extend yourself beyond your own personal context and combine your spirit and your gifts with a vision that reshapes humanity.

Taking the Pledge creates an umbrella of purpose over all of your actions.
It envelops you in an emerging understanding and generosity that energizes your life. You experience the raw thrill of living for something worthy of your attentions, toils, pressures, complaints, prayers, and celebrations. Now, you become aware that everything you do matters to our entire planet. Your life is now lived for something. Whatever your concerns may be today, they consume your attention, energy, resources, and life. Upon taking the Pledge, your concerns naturally grow to a global level, turned toward peace.

Until you throw your hat over the wall and declare that you will find a way, you cannot know the full power of making a promise for the whole world. You can know that the Pledge represents a new orientation of your life until 2014, focused on your commitment to creating peace. Although the Pledge is a five-year commitment, it will change you for the rest of your life.

Take a moment to reflect on the Pledge itself.
What is the first thing you would do? It is a wake-up call, an “oh, boy-o-boy!” moment. Upon Pledging yourself, something becomes immediately obvious as the next thing to do, that thing that will further your keeping your Pledge. Let go of your fear. Trust yourself.

If now is the time for you to take the Pledge, then write it out in your own handwriting and sign it:



By February 14, 2014, I will have created World Peace as measured by The Economist magazine.

___________________________________   __________________
name                                                                                          date

We recommend putting the signed Pledge in a place where you will see it
every day. We put it up as our computer screensaver. This is your vision, your
statement, your Pledge. Together, all of us will create world peace by 2014.


Take charge of your army

December 30, 2008

Reader Wolf Halton commented:

“We will have to help the military-industrial complex, with its thousands of jobs and millions in income, to find a socially acceptable outlet for its creativity.”

Wolf is right–no one is left out of world peace, or it’s not world peace. Today, politically organized death and misery is still socially acceptable. By February 14, 2014, together we will make it illegitimate.

Past peacemakers have criticized the military and arms-makers, often in strong terms. Criticism has its place, but we don’t have time for much inside our peace deadline.

Honestly, who is criticizing whom—who exactly is the military-industrial complex? Is it the soldiers who volunteer to serve and get a college education? Is it the managers and employees of corporations who win military contracts? Is it the taxpayers and bond-buyers who pony up the money? Is it the citizens who enjoy the protection of the military?

Only you can answer the question for yourself, but I think that the military-industrial complex is…you and me.

Here’s the upside—here’s where you get to feel powerful—if you are the military-industrial complex, then whose army is it? That’s right, it’s your army! All you have to do is say what you want done with it.

Really—it is that simple. Start saying what you want done with your army. Peacekeeping? Great! What should the army, navy, air force and the rest of the military-industrial complex be doing that represents you? Be specific—your military needs specific missions.

We are talking about the most disciplined, focused, goal-oriented force in the world—whether the US military or your home country’s army. The military wants, at the root of their ideals, to fight for something good and win. The military wants to protect—and we definitely need protection from the danger of war (by peace safety practices–another blog coming soon).

Notice that you have been asleep at the wheel. Your army is restless and unfocused, your army doesn’t have a mission that inspires it, your army has been taken over and used by ideas that are not representative of you! This is a disaster, an emergency, a world crisis! Your army wants orders that it can get behind, a direction to victory, triumph, glory and honor! Don’t expect your military resources to figure out what they should be doing–that’s your job. You define what victory is, what the mission is. If it’s my army, and it is, then the mission is to keep the entire world safe from the danger of war.

Your army is MISERABLE! Your air force is UNHEALTHY! Your navy is making circles in the ocean and wasting lives, money, goodwill. Your military is being used to make us unsafe. Forces of corruption have crept in to your army. We don’t need to criticize the corruption–we just need to give our army something useful and fulfilling to do.

It’s not too late—speak up about how your immense resource should be used.

Do these exercises to start taking command:
1.    Call anyone you know in the military. If you don’t know anyone, then find someone. Say to them, “You are giving your life to the military. What mission would most inspire you to serve?” Then listen with all your heart.
2.    Write in your journal what missions you would give your army. Whom would you consult with to make sure your orders make sense?
3.    Answer these questions in your journal: whom do you need to talk to about gaining control of your army? What do you need to say? Make a phone call right now, or put a to-do in your calendar.

Save World Peace From the Hippies and Pageant Queens

December 29, 2008

World Peace: it’s bland, idealistically hopeless, complicated, left-leaning, hippie boomer crap. Right?

Wrong. Let’s clear the air a bit, dust off some common sense, and rescue “world peace” from the deadly cultural morass where it is stuck in most people’s minds.

It is NOT:

  • Everyone somehow magically being so nice to each other that we no longer fight
  • A soundless explosion of heart-love created by humanity suddenly evolving to the next level
  • Dependent on creating “inner peace”
  • Elimination of the military
  • Impossible because “war is human nature”

World peace IS:

  • A global end to the danger of politically organized mass murder called “war”
  • The active, ongoing, multi-layered practice of safety from this danger
  • Necessary for our survival in the medium-term as a species.  Read that one again.
  • The culmination of a global trend toward cooperation and peace that is real, and doesn’t make the news.
  • An agreement among the family of nations to some new norms (similar to abolishing slavery) that prevent war and help us all

Our book, Give Peace A Deadline: What Ordinary People Can Do To Create World Peace in Five Years, gives the detail of all of this, as well as the global collaborative plan.

What you can do to begin collaborating: post a comment here, especially any questions you have, and begin talking with your friends and online community about world peace by Feb. 14, 2014. Much more to come, so stay tuned!

The Truth I Tried to Avoid

December 28, 2008

One impetus of P:5Y came from asking What is the truth that I’m stepping over in my own life? What am I spending a lot of energy repressing or making excuses for?

These are Very useful questions if you want to start discovering your purpose and take the next step in it.

I was in a year long course called Power & Contribution with 140 people who flew in from 40 different countries. For six weekends in San Francisco for a year we explored one question: “What is the contribution I was uniquely born with, to give for all people?”

We asked that question in various ways from What can I not get enough of?” “What can I do all day long and not get tired of it?” to “What is something I remember wanting for all people as a child?

One of the main distillations that I want is: All people living from the truth of who they are and consciously creating their lives, communities, nations and world from that place. World Peace is a milestone.

Nathan and I started exploring what ways we are living from truth and what ways are we not. This became more personal as I felt what I wanted, yet seemed impossible.

One truth that I kept stepping over and the majority of people seemed to be stepping over is world peace. It’s been dreamed up as this utopia and impossible ideal, but I knew many successful people who have made ‘impossible things happen’. I’ve done my share of deadline productions. I also grew up in the generation who idealizes Martin Luther King, Gandhi, and Nelson Mandela. I won third place in the Omaha, Nebraska Martin Luther King speech contest. Our heroes are the peacemakers who fearlessly fought for what they knew was true in the face of ‘that is impossible’. I knew from their example that impossibility can be a mirage masking hard work, strategy, and an aligned purpose. So why was I doing making excuses? All I have is this ONE life. How do I want to live it?

It eventually became obvious in a moment, that stepping over the nagging feeling was no longer tolerable. That moment came in a business strategy session with Nathan. We were in a semi-circular room overlooking the ocean and hills of Santa Barbara. The room was full of white boards, dry-erase markers, and audio recording equipment. We were charting industry metrics based on a book called The Blue Ocean Strategy for our business Dharmamix. We got into a discussion about the power of cognitive dissonance to influence action. The sun had just set over the hills. There was a moment looking around the room when we asked “Why don’t we do this for World Peace? Why don’t we treat peace like a business? Give it milestones, within a project and deadline?”

We had been involved with an international peace conference for a couple of years. Nathan had been working on an academic piece on the technology of conversation that creates world peace. We thought there was something new that needed to happen about the conversation of world peace but we did not know what yet.

“Peace is always one day. It’s never been now.”
“How about peace in five years?”  At that moment an unavoidable clarity emerged. Neither one of us could deny it.

I remember being seven years old. One Saturday various church friends came over to our farm in Iowa. Standing in our living room near the window that looked out to the large Weeping Willow tree I could see several older people standing in the front lawn talking. They looked perfectly loved and yet I felt sadness. I remember thinking “I wish they new how great they are. I wish they saw what I see in them.” Seeing this essence in people stayed with me.

Sitting in Santa Barbara with Nathan looking over at me, we both knew something bigger than us had just come out of our mouths. We knew peace in 10 years was still more of peace some day. We would both rather put a concerted effort within a natural time-frame humans can plan within of five years.  We wrote out a promise that created an unprecedented, productive, most-frequent-flyer-mile-fully-engaged-year of my life… and it’s just starting!

“By February 14th, 2014 I promise to create world peace as measured by The Economist Newspaper.”

Do you have a purpose that’s been following you around your whole life? I invite you to take the pledge and create world peace with me.. and With Us. Watch out for the though, for the extra energy, miracles, and resources that seem to flood in…

With Love,  Amber

p.s. You can start looking at YOUR Contribution to World Peace by asking yourself the questions underlined above.
“You cannot tell the truth if your telling your story. You cannot tell your story if your telling the truth.” -Gangaji

Marketing Evening In Santa Monica

December 28, 2008

Marketing genius Eben Pagan and his friend Alex joined me, Amber, Amber’s brother Kan Lamat and and their mother Sally at our home tonight.

Alex told a story of how a friend of his, Jeff, an internet marketer, show skepticism about peace in five years–Jeff was saying how it seems too big, too nebulous, and how he wants to focus on more tangible success in his life.

Alex told Jeff exactly how, in the near future, Jeff was going to be contributing to P5Y–since Eben is committed, and so is Alex, Jeff is going to be asked in the near future how to use cutting-edge web 2.0 marketing to cause peace in five years. Pretty soon, Alex told us, Jeff was all revved up about contributing to something beyond himself, something, as Walt Whitman would say “worthy of the prudence suitable for immortality”.

Once Jeff understood how he could make a concrete, important contribution to world peace–doing exactly what he loves to do and is good at–he was on board. Amazingly, that’s all any of us have to do to cause world peace by Feb 14, 2014: find out what our fun, exciting, skilled contribution is. No sacrifice, no pain, just fun, huge accomplishment, and the awesome feeling of participating in history.