Nonviolence over the Course of History

Ramin Jahanbegloo's 9 Tavaana lectures on nonviolence and nonviolent resistance span the history, language, ethics, politics and leaders of nonviolent struggle across the globe. After exploring the Hindu and Jainist roots of non-violent philosophy, Jahanbegloo examines the ideology of Mahatma Gandhi and Ahimsa (“do not harm”). Using the example of Gandhi associate Abdul-Ghaffar Khan, Jahanbegloo then asks whether Islam necessarily propagates violence or can be practiced in tandem with non-violence. He goes on explore the Christian roots of non-violence and the non-violent principles present in the Bible, in addition to the philosophy of Martin Luther King’s civil rights movement and the anti-apartheid movement led by Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu. The eighth session of this webinar takes up the question of non-violence in Iran and Iranian culture, elaborating on the struggle between violent and non-violent principles among Iranian intellectuals and within Iranian society. The series concludes by elaborating on steps that can be taken to create space for non-violence in societies dominated by state and other forms of systemic violence.