Utopian Movements

This section is an overview of some of the many 'Big-Picture' movements
working to create a 'paradigm shift' towards a more peaceful, just and sustainable world.

Better World | Bioneers | Cities of Peace | Community | Compassion | Conscious Evolution | Culture of Peace | Cultural Creatives | Day of Peace | Earth Federation | Economy | Education | Empathy | Global Ceasefire | Global Forums | Golden Rule | Heaven on Earth | Interfaith | Kindness | Love | May Peace Prevail On Earth | New Model | Occupy Movement | Peace Department | Peace On Earth | Peacetopia | Progressive Agenda | Progressive Spiritual Politics | Resource-Based Economy | The Arts | The Beloved Community | Voice of Reason | Volunteerism | Wayseers | WE | World Federation | Youth


Many people wish for a better world and try to do little and big things to make our families, our communities and our world better. And yet, most aren't sure if their efforts to help are really making a difference. They don't see signs that the world is getting better. Books like The Better World Handbook, by Ellis Jones, et al, and The People For Peace Project's The Better World Book, point out that there is so much going on to help make the world a better place that we never hear about. Millions of people volunteer their money, time and energy to causes they're passionate about. Hundreds of thousands of organizations are working to address local, national and international problems and injustices. As these authors show, behind the scenes, many diverse movements for change have been converging into a more holistic, global movement for a better world. This emerging movement is helping to connect local acts of compassion to a global movement for change. These books and others show how we can help this movement grow and make a difference that will help create a better world.


The Better World Book is a free online resource for the emerging Better World Movement from The EMILY Fund and The People For Peace Project. The book presents the case that a vast, global movement for a better world is emerging as many diverse movements for change converge and focus on a more holistic paradigm shift, and provides hands-on ways to help grow this emerging movement. The book advocates the formation of local Better World Clubs as a way to bring about change locally and connect to the global movement. It features a calendar of 'action dates' throughout the year - specific days that individuals, groups and governments already utilize to mobilize around specific 'better world issues' such as Peace Day, World Food Day, Human Rights Day and World Volunteer Day.


The Better World Handbook is a comprehensive, in-depth, how-to manual for building a better world. It convincingly illustrates how small every day changes can make a big difference, because all around the world millions of others are also doing things to make the world a better place. The Better World Handbook suggests that a more coordinated 'Better World Movement' is arising as people become more aware of their impact and of the widespread efforts of many others who share their vision of a more peaceful, just and sustainable world.


The cornerstone of The Better World Handbook, the comprehensive guide for the emerging Better World Movement, is THE SEVEN FOUNDATIONS OF A BETTER WORLD: - Economic Fairness - Comprehensive Peace - Ecological Sustainability - Deep Democracy - Social Justice - Simple Living - Revitalized Community. The Better World Handbook addresses each of these areas and provides a global vision of a better world that is worth fighting for. The book summarizes the main challenges that humanity faces in the 21st century, provides viable alternative solutions that we can implement, and shares examples of what thousands of people around the globe are already doing along each of the seven foundations.



"Bioneers is inspiring a shift to live on Earth in ways that honor the web of life, each other and future generations."

In 1990, Nina Simons and her husband Kenny Ausubel founded Bioneers, a nonprofit organization that promotes and connects innovative and practical solutions to our most critical global environmental and social issues. In addition to an annual conference that brings together leading scientific and social innovators, Bioneers inspires millions with an award-winning radio and book series and interactive website. Bioneers believe in and cultivates "the value and wisdom of the natural world." Their two-pronged approach to creating a fundamental global paradigm shift is to:

"* Connect people with solutions by popularizing breakthrough ideas and practices.
* Grow social capital by catalyzing, connecting and strengthening strategic networks, including bioregional and community-based alliances."



Creating a peaceful world begins with our deciding to live peaceful lives. It grows when families intentionally try to nurture each other and work together to make their communities more peaceful, just and sustainable. When towns and cities declare their intention to define themselves as 'cities of peace' and strive toward ensuring the prosperity, safety and highest quality of life for ALL of their citizens, we take a tremendous leap forward in helping to create a culture of peace. International Cities of Peace is an association of cities that 'by history, resolution or proclamation' have declared themselves as Cities of Peace. Find out how you can help your city become a City of Peace.





In our hectic, fast-paced, consumer-driven society, it's common to feel overwhelmed, isolated and alone. Many are re-discovering the healing and empowering role that community can bring to our lives. The sense of belonging we feel when we make the time to take an active role in our communities can give us a deeper sense of meaning and purpose. Getting involved in local government, or volunteering for the school board, local emergency services, or a local nonprofit providing services to the underprivileged in your community are all powerful ways to begin to feel a greater sense of connection to your local community.

Community building activists believe that community building is an effective way to improve social justice, reduce crime, and promote individual as well as community well-being. Community building events range from simple cooperation and collaboration activities like potluck meals and book clubs to organizing a community watch group, volunteer drives or festivals around a shared interest. It can also include even larger projects like engaging local participants to plant a community peace pole, create a community garden, or work together to build or refurbish a community center, park, playground or other shared community resource. Building community is an opportunity to help bring your neighborhood together and celebrate both your diversity and your common bond of shared community. As we build local communities, we are working together to help create a more peaceful, just and sustainable global community.





Barbara Marx Hubbard’s 1998 book, Conscious Evolution: Awakening the Power of Our Social Potential, helped to present the ideas of the conscious evolution movement, which asserts that we now have the ability and the technological, medical, psychological and spiritual tools to consciously choose which direction humanity’s future will take and how we will evolve as a species.  This movement asserts that we have the choice to move forward through cooperation and co-creation or to move toward self-destruction by choosing a path of separation and competition. As humanity consciously evolves, we help guide the evolution of the universe as well.  Other visionaries who write about conscious evolution include: Deepak Chopra, Andrew Cohen, Duane Elgin, Jean Houston, Barbara Marx Hubbard, Ervin LaszloElisabet Sahtouris and Marianne Williamson.


In 2008, a group of ‘evolutionary leaders’ came together at the Chopra Center in Carlsbad California to discuss how to help encourage, support and create synergistic opportunities for ‘evolutionary leaders’ who are working to help create “a movement for the conscious evolution of humanity.”  The ongoing Evolutionary Leaders Circle that came out of this meeting is united in the mission of working to “collectively inspire, support and serve conscious evolution.”  The group includes 57 notable visionary leaders including Deepak Chopra, Andrew Cohen, Duane Elgin, Jean Houston, Barbara Marx Hubbard, Ervin LaszloElisabet Sahtouris and Marianne Williamson.



A group of notable visionary leaders who formed the Evolutionary Leaders Circle, created “A Call to Conscious Evolution” which allows anyone interested in cooperating and collaborating in the movement for conscious evolution to participate by adding their voice on the Evolutionary Leaders website.  This ‘Call’ asserts:

Together, we can co-create a new narrative of conscious evolution by:

-   Building a global community and creating a culture of peace.

 -   Restoring ecological balance to nourish all life, and mitigate the effects of climate change.

 -   Engaging in social and political transformation by calling for a more conscious democracy.

 -   Promoting health and healing by acknowledging the profound mind-body-spirit connection.

 -   Supporting research and education that optimize human capacities.

 -   Encouraging integrity in business and conscious media.


Writer and social entrepreneur, Stephen Dinan is the founder of The Shift Network, an association of more than 200,000 members around the world who are dedicated to creating a paradigm shift in consciousness and society to a more peaceful, just, sustainable, healthy and prosperous future.


"The Source of Synergy Foundation is a 501c3 not-for-profit educational organization whose purpose is to synergize individuals, organizations and efforts by tapping into the infinite source of collective consciousness, creativity and potential for the common good. Our intention is to support the release of synergistic energy that will exponentially expand and create a global ripple effect in planetary consciousness. We all recognize that when individuals, organizations, communities and nations unite in a shared sense of responsibility for the common good their collective efforts have a far greater effect on the whole. Recently, we have seen an extraordinary number of networks, alliances and coalitions of individuals and organizations uniting in a shared sense of responsibility to help solve some of the world’s most pressing problems -- climate change, hunger, human rights violations, and conflicts. There is a great shift accelerating across the planet where the power of the collective spirit is activated. The Source of Synergy Foundation is dedicated to creating opportunities for synergy that support a conscious evolutionary movement for global transformation." [ From Source of Synergy Foundation website ]




A Culture of Peace is a paradigm shift in which the idea of working towards creating a more peaceful, just and sustainable world becomes the central focus of our society - of our institutions, our industries, our relationships, our entertainment, and every other aspect of our our culture. Our current culture is driven by the global economy, and it affects our every day lives, and our outlook about the world and our future.

David Adams, one of the key architects and chroniclers of the global Culture of Peace movement, takes his definition of a 'culture of peace' from two resolutions adopted by the United Nations: the 1998 UN resolution on the culture of peace and the 1999 Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace:

"a culture of peace is an integral approach to preventing violence and violent conflicts, and an alternative to the culture of war and violence based on education for peace, the promotion of sustainable economic and social development, respect for human rights, equality between women and men, democratic participation, tolerance, the free flow of information and disarmament."



The Global Movement For a Culture of Peace arose out of the UNESCO Culture of Peace Programme, designed for UNESCO by consultant David Adams who has continued to chronicle the growth of the movement. The Programme was adopted by UNESCO in 1992, and sought to create national culture of peace programs that could be implemented in UN member countries.  In 1999, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution, entitled the Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace that called for a global movement for the culture of peace, inviting member states, civil society organizations and individuals in all walks of life to join in partnership with the United Nations. To help spread the ideas in the plan of action for a culture of peace, the General Assembly declared the year 2000 as the International Year for a Culture of Peace, and the first decade of the new millennium as the International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World.  The Programme of Action addressed eight areas crucial to creating a culture of peace:

1. Peace Education
Sustainable Development
Human Rights
Equality of Women and Men
Democratic Participation
Understanding, Tolerance and Solidarity
Free Flow of Information and Knowledge
International Peace and Security

The World Report on the Culture of Peace documented the participation of more than 1000 organizations worldwide during the Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence for the Children of the World.



The World Report on the Culture of Peace documented the participation of more than 1000 organizations worldwide during the Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence for the Children of the World.



Originally called the "We The Peoples Initiative", a UN-designated “Peace Messenger Initiative”, The Culture of Peace Initiative seeks to unite “the strengths of organizations, projects and peoples in order to make Peace a practical reality for the children of this and future generations.”  The highlight of the Initiative is the International Day of Peace, also known as Peace Day, celebrated on September 21.  This day serves as an opportunity to celebrate the achievements that have been made for a more peaceful, just and sustainable world and to inspire and empower hope and action for working together to create a culture of peace.



Pierre Marchand, founder of the French humanitarian organization Partage which helps children in places of war, set out on a mission in 1997 to convince all of the Nobel Peace Prize laureates to join together to appeal to the world's governments to make peace and nonviolence for the children of the world a priority. He traveled around the world and secured the participation of all 27 Nobel Peace Prize winners alive at the time. Their appeal stressed the need to help educate young people with tools for peace and nonviolence. Then UNESCO and the Appeal of the Nobel Laureates worked to gather 100 million signatures to present at a special Millennium Assembly in the Year 2000. With UNESCO's support, this initiative helped convince the United Nations to declare the Year 2000 as the International Year for a Culture of Peace, and the first decade of the new Millennium as The International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence for the Children of the World. During the Decade, thousands of organizations participated in events and activities to raise awareness about the growing culture of peace movement and the importance of peace and nonviolence education. The Peace Kids story, Peace Kids Pledge tells the story of the Appeal of the Nobel Laureates and offers a Peace Pledge based on the Appeal that young people can use to pledge their support to live more peaceful lives.



Peacetopia is a term coined by utopian writer, Robert Alan Silverstein in numerous nonfiction and fictional works for children and adults as an attempt to more clearly describe ‘utopian ideals.’  While Thomas More’s 1516 phrase “Utopia” helped inspire an entire genre of literature and social theory, it literally means ‘no place’ and so does not accurately describe the goal it helped inspire. Peacetopia is a more apt description of the intent of transforming the current paradigm to a global community united in the common goal of striving to create a more peaceful, just and sustainable world.  Although Peacetopia (peace on earth) might not ever totally be achieved, to create a culture of peace where society’s primary goal is to strive to achieve this ideal state, societal and individual attitudes will shift from a competitive mentality to a cooperative one;  arts and entertainment will gravitate towards inspiring and empowering hope for a better world; and educational, economic, political and scientific institutions will be transformed to foster the maintenance, nurturing and expansion of society’s aspirations towards a more peacetopian world.




In their 2001 book, Cultural Creatives: How 50 Million People Are Changing the World, sociologist Paul Ray and his wife Sherry Ruth Anderson, called upon 25 years of research to conclude that there is an army of 50 million 'cultural creatives' in the United States, people "whose values embrace a curiosity and concern for the world, its ecosystem, and its peoples; an awareness of and activism for peace and social justice; and an openness to self-actualization through spirituality, psychotherapy, and holistic practices." They suggest that Cultural Creatives could have a tremendous impact on creating a new paradigm shift, creating an "Emerging Planetary Wisdom Culture" if only they recognized how many others shared their values and began working more closely together.




Throughout history there have been a number of "Peace Days" that have been promoted, including the International Day of Peace, established by the United Nations in 1981. The idea of striving to create a day of peace can be a powerful tool to create a global transformation from our culture of violence to a culture of peace. Although some may see it as a simplistic idea, there has never been a single day of peace on earth, and in order to achieve even one day of world peace, a paradigm shift must take place. The process of working for this tangible and measurable goal can cause this shift by bringing people together, and inspiring and empowering us individually and as a society to make creating a more peaceful, just and sustainable future a priority for our local and global communities.

In the 1990s, a number of individuals and organizations had the idea of beginning the approaching New Millennium with a worldwide day of peace. Just as we are inspired to make resolutions for New Year's each year, they saw this as a unique opportunity for a New Beginning for humanity, a chance to convince the world to CHOOSE the ultimate shared resolution of striving towards peace on earth on this monumental New Year's day. Many of the efforts joined together to synergistically create humanity's very first shared day of peace. One of the efforts was launched with the 1996 picture book, One Day In Peace, January 1, 2000, written by Steve Diamond and Robert Alan Silverstein. The book called for a worldwide day of peace and global ceasefire on January 1, 2000 and was translated into 21 languages. A copy was sent to every world leader and it inspired the formation of the One Day In Peace Network, an association of more than 1000 organizations in 140 countries, which secured a pledge of support from 100 Heads of State; 25 US Governors and hundreds of Mayors around the world declared Proclamations; and the US Congress and the United Nations declared January 1 as a day of peace. After January 1, 2000, the campaign continued under the leadership of Global Family Day which secured ongoing international support of January 1 as a Global Day of Peace and Sharing.


The International Day of Peace was established by the United Nations in 1981 as a worldwide day of peace, and since its inception it has inspired millions to find ways to promote hope for a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. In 2001, a new UN Resolution changed the date for the observance of the International Day of Peace to September 21. Until then, it had been tied to the opening of the General Assembly of the United Nations. This was the day when the governments of the world began their work together for the new year, and starting with a day dedicated to peace was a powerful symbol of shared intention. But some felt that since the General Assembly did not begin on a fixed date each year, it made it difficult for it to become a mainstreamed day of celebration around the world. The New Resolution also included stronger language calling upon nations, organizations and individuals to observe the day as a global ceasefire in addition to celebrating it as a day of peace.




The global economy, which sees people as nothing more than consumers, is a runaway train that is causing more and more suffering in the world. The current 'profit before people' system is causing the gap between the very rich and the very poor to grow larger each year.
But m
oney, when used for good, can help change the world for the better. In order to transform the global economy into a true global community, we need to create a Peace Economy - an economic system that gives value to other commodities besides money. Then we can create more sustainable local, national and global communities. One way to do this is to support companies and products that respect worker's rights, don't harm the earth, and contribute to creating a more just social and economic system. This will reward businesses that are doing good and provide monetary incentive for others to change their ways and adopt more socially responsible policies.

The BetterWorld Shopping Guide (BetterWorldShopper.org) grades products and services in 75 categories based on environmental and social responsibility. This pocket-sized book is a valuable tool for helping to make every dollar count for a better world. (Also Check out Co-Op America's GreenPages.org for lots of "green businesses.")

Put your resources to work for a better world -- Be conscious of the way you spend your money. Purchase Fair Trade products - products that are supplied by workers and growers who are paid fair wages, and work in safe conditions. Support socially responsible businesses by purchasing their products and investing in them. Demand corporate responsibility -- with our purchasing power, we can force corporations to manufacture and distribute their goods in ways that respect workers and protect our planet. Take a bite out of corporate control by getting money out of politics. Support local currencies and cooperatives. These are all tangible ways that we can use our economic resources to "buy a better world" and transform the global economy.

Better World Shopping Guide




‘Resource-based economy’ is a phrase introduced by futurist Jacques Fresco in his work with The Venus Project to describe a theoretical economy in which goods, information, and services are free for everyone.



The Venus Project was started in 1975 by futurist Jacques Fresco to promote his vision of creating a better world through a new technological, sustainable design he calls a ‘resource-based economy’ in which goods, services and information are free for everyone.  This design system calls for a new social system based on global cooperation to fairly and efficiently manage natural resources, and utilizes technology to design interconnected energy-efficient, fully automated and sustainable cities.  Jacques Fresco and Roxanne Meadows operate the project out of a 21.5 acre research and educational center in central Florida. The Venus Project was featured prominently in the 2008 film Zeitgeist: Addendum and the 2011 film Zeitgeist: Moving Forward.



The Zeitgeist Movement advocates for a new global paradigm in which money and private property would be abolished, and the current global economy would be replaced by a new planet-wide socioeconomic system where all of earth’s resources would be shared with all of earth’s inhabitants.  The movement believes that technology is essential in creating a better world.  Computers can help monitor the availability, need and allocation of resources, and almost all manual labor can be fully automated, allowing all people the opportunity to pursue happiness and lives of real meaning and purpose.  The Movement was inspired by Peter Joseph’s Zeitgeist films: Zeitgeist: Addendum (2008) and Zeitgeist: Moving Forward (2011).  Originally, The Zeitgeist Movement was an extension of the nonprofit organization The Venus Project, started by futurist and social engineer Jacques Fresco, but in 2011 it became an independent nonprofit. 




Because we live in a culture of violence, it is hard to learn how to live in peace. Peace education is desperately needed to help teach us how to live peacefully. Many peacebuilders are helping to bring the need for peace education to light and there are many resources available. Whether or not we have our own children, we can help educate the next generation for peace. In our families, we can help raise peacebuilders, by sharing our peace values and by setting a peaceful example. We can help promote peace education and conflict resolution in our schools and advocate for legislation that promotes these tools. Peace education isn't just for the young. Adults need to learn about peace, too. Young people that learn peacebuilding skills in school can help adults learn how to be better peacebuilders and peaceworkers, too.




"Mankind's desire for peace can be realized only by the creation of a world government. With all my heart I believe that the world's present system of sovereign nations can only lead to barbarism, war and inhumanity, and that only world law can assure progress towards a civilized peaceful community."
-- Albert Einstein

The United Nations provides a forum for nearly all countries of the world to address their grievances with other countries, and to work together on global issues that affect the planet and all of its people. International laws help provide a legal framework for nations to work out their differences in a fair, just and equitable way. But the United Nations serves mostly in an advisory capacity, and often does not have the authority to enforce many international laws and treaties. The UN Security Council does have authority to enforce many breaches of international law, but its decisions are not democratic as they are made by the governments of only a small number of members of the United Nations. Because of these limitations, and the fact that the world is so interconnected, and there are so many problems and concerns that affect not just one or a few nations, but all of humanity, some have advocated for a more formalized form of democratic global governance.

The idea of "world federalists" arose after World War I and the formation of the League of Nations. World federalists argued for the creation of a democratically elected world government with the authority to make and enforce international laws. Before the outbreak of World War II, as tensions mounted in Europe, interest in the idea of a world federation grew and many groups in Europe and the United States were formed, including The Campaign for World Government in 1937, the Federal Union in the UK in 1938, and the US Federal Union in 1939. After the formation of the United Nations in 1945, the idea of a world federation gained greater support, and in August 1947, 51 organizations from 24 countries came together in Switzerland for the Conference of the World Movement for World Federal Government. By the next year's congress there were more than 150,000 members in the movement. Much of the work of the world federalist movement was directed at trying to move the United Nations closer to a world federal system. At first it was hoped that the UN Charter would be reviewed in 1955 and changes would be made to the Charter. When this didn't happen, efforts were directed at trying to advocate for amendments to the Charter to reform the UN's institutions and branches, such as creating a World Court with real authority, a more democratic Security Council and a democratically elected General Assembly or World Parliament. Today the World Federalist Movement continues to represent member and associate organizations around the world. The international secretariat is headquartered in New York City across the street from the United Nations, and a congress of representatives is convened every four years.



The Earth Federation Movement (EFM) is similar to the World Federation Movement (WFM) with some significant differences. The WFM is actively engaged with the United Nations and seeks to reform it so that it becomes more democratic and more effective, while the EFM believes that the UN Charter is innately undemocratic, unjust and unfair, and should be completely replaced by an enforceable democratic world government constitution. The EFM, in fact, promotes an Earth Constitution that thousands of global citizens helped create over 33 years of consultations (1958-1991) under the leadership of the World Constitution and Parliament Association. This Earth Constitution would establish a democratic non-military global government with enforceable environmental and human rights laws.

Earth Constitution
Earth Federation Movement
World Federalist vs Earth Federalist




Since it was established by the United Nations in 1981, The International Day of Peace has inspired millions to find ways to promote hope for a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. In 2001, a new UN Peace Day Resolution included stronger language, calling upon the world to observe the day as a global ceasefire in addition to celebrating it as a day of peace and nonviolence. The idea of a "global ceasefire" was previously introduced in Steve Diamond and Robert Alan Silverstein's 1996 picture book, One Day In Peace, January 1 and subsequent title, Peace Day, September 21, both of which posed the question, "What if for one day no gun was fired?" The Global Ceasefire presents an opportunity to unite the world around a shared, tangible and measurable goal. It has already been the occasion for a number of truces and ceasefires, and as the campaign gains awareness and strength, it is providing hope for a world without war; a world at peace.





"The World Social Forum (WSF) is an bi-annual meeting of civil society organizations, first held in Brazil, which offers a self-conscious effort to develop an alternative future through the championing of counter-hegemonic globalization. Some[who?] consider the World Social Forum to be a physical manifestation of global civil society, as it brings together non governmental organizations, advocacy campaigns as well as formal and informal social movements seeking international solidarity. The World Social Forum prefers to define itself as "an opened space – plural, diverse, non-governmental and non-partisan – that stimulates the decentralized debate, reflection, proposals building, experiences exchange and alliances among movements and organizations engaged in concrete actions towards a more solidarity, democratic and fair world....a permanent space and process to build alternatives to neoliberalism."[1] It is held by members of the alter-globalization movement (also referred to as the global justice movement) who come together to coordinate global campaigns, share and refine organizing strategies, and inform each other about movements from around the world and their particular issues. The World Social Forum is explicit about not being a representative of all of those who attend and thus does not publish any formal statements on behalf of participants.[2] It tends to meet in January at the same time as its "great capitalist rival", the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland. This date is consciously picked to promote their alternative answers to world economic problems in opposition to the World Economic Forum." [wikipedia]





All of the movements discussed here aspire to create a "paradigm shift" or global transformation that will create a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. A number of movements aim to create this transformation through compassion, empathy and kindness. They believe that by practicing and spreading the Golden Rule -- Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you -- we can create this better world.

compassion: deep awareness of the suffering of another coupled with the wish to relieve it.

empathy: identification with and understanding of another's situation, feelings, and motives.

kindness: the quality or state of being charitable, considerate, generous, helpful, sympathetic or understanding.

love: a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection

: Compassion

The nonprofit, Compassionate Action Network International was inspired by Karen Armstrong's book, 12 Steps to a Compassionate Life. Its goal is to connect communities and organizations to grow a global movement of compassionate action. You can help grow the movement by: * Starting a Compassionate Action Group * Signing the Charter for Compassion online at: www.CharterForCompassion.org





Social entrepreneur and film documentarian, Edwin Rutsch, created the Center for Building a Culture of Empathy based on the idea that empathy "forms the foundation of caring, community, compassion, love and all the values that hold society together and make life worth living." As one way to raise awareness about the power of empathy and compassion to transform lives, he has created more than 1800 videos featuring conversations and insights from "empathy experts" in many different fields and from every walk of life. The Center's goal is to build a global movement for a culture of empathy and compassion. One of the primary ways they help build the movement is by promoting and facilitating Empathy Circles, small groups that meet weekly on Google hangouts.



GOLDEN RULE : Kindness


The best-selling book, Random Acts of Kindness, helped to start a movement that has spread around the world. The book, and the many books on kindness that followed, helped to highlight the transformative power that each of has to change the world with kindness, one person at a time. The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation helps to promote "kindness" by providing inspiration, information, and resources to celebrate kindness throughout the year as well as a special World Kindness Day on November 13, World Kindness Week in November, and a Random Acts of Kindness Week in February. Others celebrate the first of every month as Kindness Day. In this way we begin each month by rededicating ourselves to change the world, one act of kindness at a time. Together we are creating a more peaceful, just and sustainable world through kindness.



The Kind Acts Foundation's website offers educators and parents a free and easy way to create a certificate to reward a child for an act of kindness.



The Great Kindness Challenge, launched in 2008 by Kids For Peace, is a global annual event that takes place on the second Saturday in August. Young people of all ages are urged to perform as many acts of kindness as possible and to spread the message of the campaign to as many friends as possible: "The more people we involve, the faster we move towards creating a world filled with love and peace." .



Kindness conversations is a series of interviews about the power of kindness to create a better world. The project was created by social entrepreneur, Noelani Musicaro. Share your story of kindness and help inspire hope for a better world.





The Love Foundation is a nonprofit organization working to inspire people to love unconditionally. Their vision is to help create a paradigm shift by raising awareness about the power of unconditional love to transform individuals and society as a whole.

On May 1, 2004, The Love Foundation launched the first Global Love Day to promote the idea of unconditional love, tolerance and unity. Since then Global Love Day has been observed in over 90 countries! The theme of Global Love Day is "Love Begins With Me" -- a simple but powerful message reminding us that love is the bond that joins us all, and we can help change the world by reaching within and without in love. The Love Foundation's Global Love Day flyer carries a simple and empowering message and is available on their website in 19 languages:

We are one humanity on this planet.
All life is interconnected and interdependent.
All share in the Universal bond of love.
Love begins with self acceptance and forgiveness.
With tolerance and compassion we embrace diversity.
Together we make a difference through love.



"Standing on the Side of Love is an interfaith public advocacy campaign, promoting respect for the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Standing on the Side of Love confronts issues of exclusion, oppression and violence based on identity. Based in the aspiration to create beloved community, the campaign pursues social change through advocacy, public witness, and speaking out in solidarity with those whose lives are publicly demeaned. Our core issues of focus include, but are not limited to: LGBT equality, immigrant justice, civil political discourse, and religious freedom & diversity. The campaign is sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Association. All people, not just Unitarian Universalists, are invited to stand, speak, worship, march, roll, and live on the side of the love." [ from http://facebook.com/SideOfLove ]




Martin Rutte, an international speaker and consultant in the field of spirituality in the workplace, started
Project Heaven On Earth to bring together those who share the vision of creating a more peaceful, just and sustainable world -- heaven on earth. Working together, we can help inspire and empower humanity to realize our highest shared purpose -- to create Heaven on Earth.




Some of the wars and conflicts of the past and present were fought over land and resources, but many have been over religious differences. In this past century, a global interfaith movement has been growing, helping to raise consciousness about the need for tolerance and understanding between different cultures and religions. This movement has helped highlight the common goals that most religions share, such as the Golden Rule, which is at the heart of nearly all religious traditions. At the same time, many throughout the world are discovering that 'spirituality' -- a deep connection to a greater purpose for humanity -- is an important driving force in their lives, even if they aren't religious.

The Interfaith Alliance
The Interfaith Center of New York
Interfaith Youth Core
The Network of Spiritual Progressives
The Temple of Understanding
United Religions Initiative
The World Peace Prayer Society




"May Peace Prevail On Earth"

Since 1955, The World Peace Prayer Society has been spreading the universal message, "May Peace Prevail On Earth" as a wish and prayer to inspire hope for a more peaceful world. This peace message can be found on nearly 200,000 peace poles in 180 countries. On each pole the phrase is displayed in several different languages, and peace poles around the world carry the message in nearly every language. Peace poles are a powerful tool to help create a paradigm shift from our culture of violence to a culture of peace. Communities come together for a dedication ceremony and unite in this shared wish for a better world. Long afterwards, the peace poles remain as a constant reminder and inspiration for all who see them. Many find that saying "May Peace Prevail On Earth" is also useful in helping to refocus and remember their higher purpose when they are feeling overwhelmed or their thoughts and emotions are taking them somewhere they don't want to go. Simply stopping for a moment and taking a deep breath and slowly whispering this universal wish a few times is sometimes all that we need to pull us out of a situation so that we can pause, and refocus and restore the balance of purpose and direction. It also reminds us that we are never alone in our wish for a better world. At any moment, many others are sharing this universal wish all across the globe.




"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete." -- Buckminster Fuller

In his book, The New Model, author and filmmaker Malachi Roth presents a compelling argument that a new paradigm, "new model" global community is emerging. "It seems that the majority of people are finally starting to recognize what it is that we are collectively "against" namely highly concentrated wealth and the marriage of corporations to the state that results. The next step is to figure out exactly what it is we are collectively "for" before the disproportionately powerful few determine it for us. Fortunately an activated synchronistic global community appears to be incrementally forging a peaceful and just "new model" of international standards that is quickly rendering the old model obsolete."



"The Occupy movement is an international protest movement against social and economic inequality, its primary goal being to make the economic and political relations in all societies less vertically hierarchical and more flatly distributed. Local groups often have different foci, but among the movement's prime concerns is the claim that large corporations and the global financial system control the world in a way that disproportionately benefits a minority, undermines democracy and is unstable." [wikipedia]


"Occupy Wall Street (OWS) is the name given to a protest movement that began on September 17, 2011, in Zuccotti Park, located in New York City's Wall Street financial district. The Canadian group and magazine Adbusters initiated the call for protest with assistance from the Manhattan-based public relations firm Workhorse, who was well known for its successful work on client brands including Mercedes and Saks Fifth Avenue. The ensuing series of events helped lead to media awareness that inspired Occupy protests and movements around the world. In awarding Workhorse its Platinum Award, industry publication PRNews noted "The results, obviously, have been spectacular. There’s hardly a newspaper, Internet or broadcast media outlet that hasn’t covered OWS."[7] The main issues raised by Occupy Wall Street are social and economic inequality, greed, corruption and the perceived undue influence of corporations on government—particularly from the financial services sector. The OWS slogan, We are the 99%, refers to income inequality and wealth distribution in the U.S. between the wealthiest 1% and the rest of the population. To achieve their goals, protesters act on consensus-based decisions made in general assemblies which emphasize direct action over petitioning authorities for redress" [wikipedia]


Occupy Love is a "moving, transformative, heartfelt film" from acclaimed filmmaker Velcrow Ripper about "the global revolution of the heart that is erupting around the planet... From the Arab Spring to the European Summer, from the Occupy Movement to the global climate justice movement, a profound shift is taking place: humanity is waking up to the fact that the dominant system of power is failing to provide us with health, happiness or meaning. The old paradigm that concentrates wealth, founded on the greed of the few, is collapsing. Endless growth on a finite planet cannot be sustained. The resulting crisis has become the catalyst for a profound transformation: millions of people are deciding that enough is enough – the time has come to create a new world, a world that works for all life. Woven throughout the moving, action oriented backbone of the story, is a deep exploration of the heart of the movement, the meaning of love, and concrete examples of just what “another world” could look like, featuring some of the world’s key visionaries on alternative systems of economics, sustainability, and empathy."




"Citizens across the United States are now uniting in a great cause to establish a Department of Peace, seeking nothing less than the transformation of our society, to make non-violence an organizing principle, to make war archaic through creating a paradigm shift in our culture for human development, for economic and political justice and for violence control." -- Dennis Kucinich

In order to bring about a paradigm shift, we must create new economic, political and social institutions focused on the goal of creating peace, justice and sustainability, and transform current ones to provide an infrastructure that will make striving for a better world easier for individuals, nations and our global community. One idea in the political realm to help shift our priorities to focus on this goal, is to create a cabinet-level national Department of Peace in the United States and Ministries of Peace in other nations. In the US, a grassroots campaign is spreading in support of a Congressional Bill to establish a cabinet-level Department of Peace, and the Global Alliance for Ministries & Infrastructures for Peace spearheads the initiative to nations throughout the world. Several nations have already created national Peace Departments or Ministries! This idea is not a new one. In 1793, Dr. Benjamin Rush, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, proposed the creation of a Department of Peace to help establish perpetual peace in the new nation. Although his suggestion was not adopted, the movement to create a department with a Secretary of Peace continued throughout US history. In 1935 Senator Matthew Neely from West Virginia introduced the first bill in Congress calling for the establishment of a Department of Peace, and since then similar bills have been introduced in the House and the Senate nearly 100 times!

US Department of Peace Campaign
Global Alliance for Ministries & Infrastructures for Peace



When Bernie Sanders decided to run for President in the 2016 election, many who wished for a better world were filled with hope. Bernie Sanders' longstanding reputation of fighting for progressive values drew together many diverse grassroots movements to rally around his campaign. They recognized the opportunity to bring mainstream attention to a holistic progressive agenda of social issues. Foremost on the list was tackling economic inequality by getting money out of politics through ending Citizens United and publicly financing elections, breaking up the big banks and reining in Wall Street, providing free higher education and universal health care for all, and guaranteeing a living wage for every worker. Sanders called for curtailing military spending and seeking peaceful solutions to international conflicts; getting serious about global climate change, and a whole host of other issues necessary to create a more peaceful, just and sustainable future. Political groups planned to spend billions of dollars crafting campaign messages leading up to the 2016 election, and many recognized that this could be the next Big Moment for a better world, as the Bernie Sanders campaign promised to keep these crucial issues at the forefront of public attention.



The Network of Spiritual Progressives is an international 'spiritually-based' social justice and political movement that was founded by Rabbi Michael Lerner and more than 1200 activists who met in Berkeley, California in 2005. Inspired by the misuse and co-opting of faith by political conservatives, NSP brought together people of all religious faiths, as well as those who consider themselves spiritual-but-not-religious, secular humanists and atheists, to advocate for more progressive and humane spiritual values in the political realm. NSP's goal is to help create a new paradigm "in which all of life is shaped by peace, fairness, environmental sanity, love, care for one another, care for the Earth, generosity, compassion, respect for diversity and differences..." The key to transforming the current paradigm is to seek a "New Bottom Line." Today nearly everything, including our institutions, corporations, governmental policies, educational, legal and medical systems, and our own individual actions and goals are judged by how productive and efficiently they can maximize money and power. Instead, the New Bottom Line would judge by how well an action, policy or institution maximizes "love, caring, kindness, generosity, ethical and ecologically sensitive behavior…"


Pledge to Build a Better World - A Spiritual Covenant
(from The Network of Spiritual Progressives)

  • 1. Through my life, my relationships and my political advocacy, I will create a society that promotes loving and caring relationships and families.
  • 2. I will take personal responsibility to live and interact in ways that build a world of love, kindness, amazement, generosity and peace.
  • 3. I will work to develop and support social structures and organizations that build a caring society by cultivating and rewarding love, kindness, wonder, generosity and peace.
  • 4. I will work to see that our education system teaches the values of love, caring, generosity, intellectual curiosity, tolerance, gratitude, awe and wonder at the universe, democratic participation and environmental responsibility.
  • 5. I will support and advocate for health care for all through a single payer national health program as an expression of my commitment to care for the health of my neighbors and fellow human beings.
  • 6. I will champion voluntary simplicity and ethical consumption, while working to change the global economy so that it is ordered in rational, caring and sustainable ways.
  • 7. I will stand up for a strategy of homeland security, immigration and foreign policy that is based on nonviolence and generosity and that works to eliminate poverty in the US and every other country.
  • 8. I will protect our society from fundamentalist attempts to impose a particular religion on everyone. At the same time, I will also honor religion's vital voice in the public sphere.




In his 1996 book, The Peace On Earth Millennium and 2003 follow-up, We Want Peace On Earth!, utopian author Robert Alan Silverstein makes the case that many diverse movements for a more peaceful, just and sustainable world have been evolving and converging into an emerging, as yet unnamed holistic movement. He called it the Peace On Earth Movement, because although it can be traced back through many different social-movement paths, the goal of each shares a vision of a world at peace, balance and harmony that can best be described as peace on earth. Once we recognize that so many things are already being done by so many people to help create this shared vision, we will be inspired and empowered to make striving towards peace on earth our personal and societal goal.



The creative spirit is one of the most powerful driving forces in human history. Creativity in the arts can inspire new insights and understanding for generations. Inventive creativity has helped transform our society time and time again, helping to make life better for countless lives. Creativity helps bring meaning to one's life through unique self-expression. When focused on uplifting humanity, the arts expressed through images, books, music and film, can help to create a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. The term 'artivism' is used to describe the use of artistic creativity to bring about social, political or environmental change.


"Founded in 1997, Artists For A Better World International (AFABW) is a network of worldwide artists uniting to make a difference in society...AFABW creates music CDs, poetry anthologies, short story books, visual art calendars and other collaborative creative projects that include artists from around the globe."



The Artivist Film Festival & Awards is an international film festival and awards ceremony dedicated to recognizing filmmakers who create works that deal with social issues like animal rights, child advocacy, environmental protection and human rights.


ARTS FOR A BETTER WORLD in Miami promotes Corporate Social Responsibility by using the arts as a vehicle for positive change.



"The Global Peace Film Festival was established to utilize the power of the motion picture to further the goal of peace on earth. With a mission to expand the definition of peace beyond anti-war, ideology, activism or specific causes, the Global Peace Film Festival films and events suggest a more personal message as reflected in the daily lives of individuals and communities the world over."


The Peacetopian Community is a diverse group of dreamers, artists, writers, musicians and filmmakers, who come from many different traditions with many different beliefs; but they share a common vision of a more peaceful, just and sustainable future and a mission to work together to create and promote works that manifest that vision.




"I do not think of political power as an end. Neither do I think of economic power as an end. They are ingredients in the objective that we seek in life. And I think that end of that objective is a truly brotherly society, the creation of the beloved community" - Martin Luther King, Jr.

While utopian ideals have and continue to inspire many, some have argued that envisioning a more practical reality creates a tangible and achievable goal that will make it easier to inspire people to action to create that reality. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had this in mind when he promoted the ideal but very real goal of creating 'the beloved community.' Dr. King envisioned the Beloved Community as a global community of brotherhood and sisterhood, where all are included and treat each other without bigotry, discrimination or racism. All people will be seen as equals, and will share in the abundance of the earth, so that there will be no hunger, poverty or homelessness. Everyone will be educated with the tools and resources to work out personal conflicts through peaceful conflict resolution, and nations will resolve international disputes through the same nonviolent means, instead of engaging in military conflicts. Dr. King believed that all conflicts can be resolved without violence, and that through reconciliation, adversaries can learn to cooperate together in a spirit of friendship and goodwill.

Dr. King began promoting the concept of 'the beloved community' in 1956, but the term was first coined in the early 1900s by Joisiah Royce, a philosopher and theologian who founded the Fellowship of Reconciliation. Dr. King, also a member of this organization, popularized the phrase and developed it more fully, so that today it is embraced at the very heart of many organizations, including The King Center, as well as by many diverse faith-based groups and churches.




"We irrevocably proclaim ourselves to be an independent world of free people; an interconnected human family-state of universal citizens, called the human nation, existing within all nations as a united world family, bound together by love." -- Bryant McGill

The 17th century's Age of Reason brought humanity a quantum leap forward in enlightenment, leading to such revolutionary milestones of social justice and human rights as the American Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights; Bryant McGill's 2012 book, The Voice of Reason gives us a fresh clarion call for a revolution of the mind and spirit to create a better world in this time of crisis and uncertainty. The book shows us what brought us to where we are and what the human family can become, and rallies forth a revolutionary call for us to declare our independence from our culture of violence and materialistic greed.





Some people are fortunate enough to earn their livelihoods in jobs that directly help to create a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. But much of the efforts to make life better for our communities and our world are done by volunteers -- people who work for a better world without pay.

Around the world, hundreds of millions of people volunteer - nearly 65 million volunteer in America! American volunteers do the equivalent work of over 9 million full-time employees!

Recognizing the importance of volunteers, the United Nations Volunteers programme (UNV) works with a network of over 20,000 organizations to use International Volunteer Day on December 5 as an opportunity to celebrate the important contribution volunteers make, and as a launching point to inspire year-round volunteer involvement.

Many countries have national networks of volunteer organizations. In the US these include Youth Service America; the Points of Light Foundation which helps connect more than 2.5 million volunteers who provide services for 170 million people; and Action Without Borders (idealist.org), which links volunteers to 50,000 organizations in 165 countries.

US Government agencies that promote volunteering include AmeriCorps, which provides money for college tuition for youth volunteers; SeniorCorps which connects those over 55 to volunteer opportunities, and the Peace Corps for helping in other countries.

Volunteers ARE creating a better world, one person and one act of kindness at a time.





"Wayseers are the change agents of society. Wayseers are the ones who know first, who sense earliest the disturbances in the fabric of human affairs – the trends, the patterns, the fashions, the coming groundswells, the revolutions that are afoot."

In 2011, author and social entrepreneur Garret John LoPorto's youtube video, The Wayseer Manifesto went viral; now translated into several languages, more than 6 million have seen it. The video is based on the ideas in his book, The Wayseers, which calls upon free-spirits, visionaries and nonconformists to join the revolution to change the establishment and create a new paradigm.




Youth - young people aged 15 to 24 -- make up nearly one-third of the world's population. Youth are directly affected by social, economic and political developments around the world, but in many countries, they are not allowed to be involved in the decisions that shape their societies. And yet, young people possess the energy, enthusiasm and unique perspective greatly needed to address the problems of our time. A number of organizations and networks have arisen to give voice to young people's concerns and to inspire and empower them to become involved in helping to bring about the changes needed in their communities. Many of these efforts help connect local activities to global networks and movements, providing greater strength and proving that together, young people ARE making a difference in creating a more peaceful, just and sustainable world.


Global Youth Action Network is one of the largest networks of youth organizations. It works to "
facilitate youth participation and intergenerational partnership in global decision-making; support collaboration among diverse youth organizations; and to provide tools, resources, and recognition for positive youth action."



"GENERATION WAKING UP is a global campaign to ignite a generation of young people to bring forth a thriving, just, sustainable world. We strive to: - Awaken in young people a clear sense of who we are as a generation, an understanding of the urgent global challenges and opportunities we face, and a calling to take action. - Empower young people with the training, mentoring, and support needed to thrive as global citizens, leaders, and change agents in the 21st century. - Mobilize young people locally and globally across issues, geography, and all lines of difference, unleashing the collaborative power of our generation."
[ From the Generation Waking Up website ]



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