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12 March 2007 @ 12:27 am
Sweet Land  
Greg and I went to see Sweet Land yesterday, a movie about a farming community in Minnesota just after World War I.  Within the  community, a small, tight-knit group of  Lutherans struggles to accept  Inge Altenberg, a  German immigrant  who arrives to wed Olaf Torvik, one of the Minnesotan farmers, through an arranged marriage. What a remarkable film this is.

This morning, in thinking about the characters and story, I wondered if it might be possible to use film to show graduates of the Alternatives to Violence basic level workshop the twelve "Guides to Transforming Power" in action. During the AVP workshop, participants do role plays in which they attempt to incorporate one or more of the Guides in order to recognize how they occur in life. Shortly after seeing Sweet Land, I realized that this beautiful film demonstrates at least six or seven of them.

The twelve Guides to Transforming Power specified by AVP are as follow:

(1) Seek to resolve conflicts by reaching common ground. (2) Reach for that something good in others. (3) Listen before making judgments. (4) Base your position on truth. (5) Be ready to revise your position if it is wrong. (6) Expect to experience great inward power to act. (7) Risk being creative rather than violent. (8) Use surprise and humor. (9) Learn to trust your inner sense of when to act. (10) Be willing to suffer for what is important. (11) Be patient and persistent. (12) Build community based on honesty, respect, and caring.