Nonviolence in Today’s Violent World

How to solve issues of racial, economic, political and religious injustice with non-violence.

Download a flyer: 2016 nonviolence forum

A SiVIC Interfaith Forum featuring Dr. Subba Rao, Chairman, National Youth Project India; Professor Michael Nagler, Founder and President of The Metta Center for Nonviolence, Berkeley; and Maha Elgenaidi, Chief Executive Officer and founder of Islamic Networks Group. Their conversation will be moderated by Dr. Prasad Kaipa, researcher and consultant and followed by an interactive discussion with the audience.

Light refreshments will be served.

Please RSVP :, 408 530 2733 , 669 292 1457


Maha ElGenaidi: Maha Elgenaidi is the founder of ING. She is the author of training handbooks on outreach for American Muslims as well as training seminars for public institutions on developing cultural competency with the American Muslim community. A senior fellow of the American Leadership Forum and recently named by the San Jose Business Journal as one of Silicon Valley’s Women of Influence, Maha has been recognized with numerous civil rights awards, including the “Civil Rights Leadership Award” from the California Association of Human Relations Organizations and the “Citizen of the Year” award from the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors. She earned a master’s degree in Religious Studies from Stanford University, and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics from the American University in Cairo.

Michael Nagler is Professor emeritus of Classics and Comparative Literature at UC, Berkeley, where he co-founded the Peace and Conflict Studies Program in which he taught an immensely popular nonviolence course. Among other awards, he received the Jamnalal Bajaj International Award for “Promoting Gandhian Values Outside India” in 2007. He is the author of The Nonviolence Handbook: A Guide to Practical Action  (2014) as well as The Search for a Nonviolent Future, which received a 2002 American Book Award and has been translated into Korean, Arabic, Italian and other languages; Our Spiritual Crisis: Recovering Human Wisdom in a Time of Violence (2005); The Upanishads (with Sri Eknath Easwaran, 1987), and other books as well as many articles on peace and spirituality.

Dr. Subba Rao: Mahatma Gandhi still lives through the lives of many dedicated soldiers of peace, such as one of the most popular and dynamic youth leader, Dr. S.N. Subba Rao, a fellow of Gandhi Peace Foundation and founder of National Youth Project. He inspires and lifts up the spirit of youth in the world for building a new society based on Love, Peace, Harmony and Social Justice. Every one affectionately calls him ‘Bhai Ji,’ meaning ‘Elder Brother’ and he reciprocates their love with equal abandon. That is why a personal bond is quickly formed between him and anyone who meets him. In 1970, he founded Mahatma Gandhi Sewa Ashram in Chambal valley at Joura, district Morena (Madhya Pradesh). The Ashram is organizing khadi and Gramodhyog camps, Youth leadership camps, employment generation camps and programs related to empowerment of rural people.

Nonviolence in Today’s Violent World

Mahatma GandhiA SiVIC Interfaith Forum

How to solve issues of racial, economic, political and religious injustice with non-violence

Sunday, August 14, 2016, 2:00 – 5:00 pm

Pacifica Institute, 1257 Tasman Drive, Unit A-B, Sunnyvale CA 94089 [map]


Their conversation will be moderated by Dr. Prasad Kaipa, researcher and consultant and followed by an interactive discussion with the audience.

Light  refreshments  will be served.

Please RSVP :, 408 530 2733; 669 292 1457

Co-sponsored by 

details on the calendar

Interfaith Candlelight Prayer Vigil for Peace

In light of the recent violence in Baton Rouge, Turkey, France, Baghdad, Dallas and various other places, we invite you to an interfaith prayer service for peace.

Join us so that we can pray together for the victims of violence and the strength to combat it by being peacemakers.

We will pray for the courage to take action on behalf of those suffering injustice and to comfort those suffering from violence.

We will pray together to remind ourselves of God’s presence within all of us so that we can focus on what gives us hope, and what moves us to act on our concern for peace and justice in our world.

We will gather to remember our common dignity, our unique heritage as children of God, and our interconnectedness as brothers and sisters in the one human family.


Nonviolence in Today’s World

gandhiYou won’t want to miss this special Interfaith Forum featuring:

  • Maha Elgenaidi
    Chief Executive Officer and founder of Islamic Networks Group.
  • Professor Michael Nagler
    Founder and President of The Metta Center for Nonviolence, Berkeley
  • Subba Raoji
    Chairman, National Youth Project India

Their conversation will be moderated by Dr. Prasad Kaipa, researcher and consultant and followed by an interactive discussion with the audience.

See details on our Events calendar or download a flyer: 2016 nonviolence forum

Know Your Neighbor: Call to Action

SiVIC has joined the ING Know Your Neighbors program and a coalition of faith-based and humanist groups in responding to presidential orders restricting immigration from Middle Eastern and African countries:

Faith-based and humanist groups call on government to reaffirm American values

“Although the U.S. is a nation of immigrants and has a long history of welcoming refugees from diverse lands, we also have a history of different periods of xenophobia and exclusion, including the Chinese Exclusion Act, the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, and the rejection of Jewish refugees from Nazi persecution and genocide. None of these actions made our country more secure, and we can be certain that the great majority of our people do not support a repeat of such episodes.”
—Maha Elgenaidi, Executive Director of the Islamic Networks Group

“Any attempt to ban Muslim refugees based on their religion betrays our values and sends the un-American message that there are second-class faiths. Our country, founded by immigrants who established religious freedom as a bedrock principle, is better than this. A threat to anyone’s religious liberty is a threat to everyone’s religious liberty, and we as Baptists stand with those facing religious persecution around the world, regardless of their faith.”
—Amanda Tyler, Executive Director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty

San Jose – The Know Your Neighbor: Multifaith Encounters campaign, a program of the Islamic Networks Group (ING), released the following statement today in reaction to executive orders signed by President Donald Trump restricting immigration from a number of Middle Eastern and African countries.

The executive orders issued today and earlier this week by President Donald Trump require us to reaffirm basic values that we share with the great majority of Americans:

  • Respect for diversity, pluralism, and religious freedom: Although the executive orders do not explicitly mention Muslims or their faith, several provisions target Muslims. As such, they violate the principles embodied in the First Amendment and our country’s commitment to religious neutrality.
  • Care for the stranger and the needy: Except for the native peoples, since its founding the United States has been a nation of immigrants. Our country has a long tradition of welcoming and supporting immigrants and the needy; the rejection of refugees fleeing horrific violence flies in the face of the obligation to help and the hospitality that the American people have traditionally shown to those in need.
  • Civil liberties: While these orders do not explicitly target particular groups, they clearly impact primarily one religion (Muslim) and one ethnicity (Latino). Singling out these groups reinforces and encourages existing prejudice and discrimination against them, including U.S. citizens and documented immigrants belonging to these groups.
  • Unity and solidarity: Policies whose effect is to single out specific religious or ethnic groups violate the sense of national unity and solidarity that allows the diverse people of our nation to live in peace and harmony.

Although these measures purport to deal with the threat of terrorism, there is little evidence to support this claim. What they do, however, is to cast a dark cloud over the entire American Muslim population, making it all too clear that their significant contributions to American life are not welcomed. This impacts women in headscarves who have been the object of increased harassment and students in schools who have seen a rise in bullying in recent years due to anti-Muslim rhetoric which will increase with these policies. In response to the Executive Orders, we faith-based and humanist organizations call for an increase in:

  • Interfaith engagement, including both interfaith dialogues and events bringing people of diverse traditions together for mutual encounter and learning. To get started, see this page.
  • Education about Muslims and Islam, including presentations by Muslim speakers and “meet a Muslim” events in houses of worship or other public venues. To get started, see this page.
  • Commitment to and training in being “upstanders” who respond supportively to incidents of hate and bigotry.

This is a time to come together as a community and uphold our sacred values. Therefore, in responding to the current situation, and to prepare for possible actions in the future that may likewise call our fundamental values into question, we commit ourselves, and call on all who share our concerns, to respect the principle of nonviolence in thought, word, and deed.

  • We will maintain an attitude of charity and openness to all, including those with whom we most profoundly disagree. We will seek to understand their motivations and assume that they are sincerely seeking what is right unless presented with clear evidence to the contrary. If we are people of prayer, then we will pray for their well-being and for wisdom for them and for ourselves.
  • In our statements, we will condemn actions but not persons. We will speak firmly but respectfully of and with those whose words and actions we oppose.


American Muslim Advisory Council
Arizona Jews for Justice
Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
Bay Area Interfaith Connect
Bridges of Faith Trialogue, Cincinnati
California Institute for Human Science Interfaith Circle
Center for Inquiry
Colorado Muslim Speakers Bureau
Council of Islamic Organizations of Kentucky
Delaware Valley Speakers Bureau
Euphrates Institute
Global Immersion Project
Interfaith Alliance
Interfaith Arkansas
Interfaith Center at the Presidio
Interfaith Center of New York
Interfaith Council of Central Florida
Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice, Ann Arbor
Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston
Interfaith Paths to Peace
Interfaith Youth Core
Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati
Islamic Education & Resources Network (ILearn)
Islamic Networks Group
Islamic Society of Greater Houston
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Alabama
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Arizona
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Edmonton, Canada
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Greater Houston
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Saint Louis
Islamic Speakers Bureau of San Diego
Islamic Speakers Bureau of Santa Barbara
Jewish Council for Public Affairs
Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest
Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light
Monmouth Center for World Religions and Ethical Thought
Muslim Coalition of Connecticut
Muslim Community Center, East Bay
National Council of Churches
National Sikh Campaign
Network of Spiritual Progressives
New Jersey Islamic Networks Group
Religions for Peace USA
Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism
San Francisco Interfaith Council
Seattle Islamic Speakers Bureau
Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign
Silicon Valley Interreligious Council
Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom
South Coast Interfaith Council
Speakers Bureau of Nebraska
Spokane Interfaith Council
Tikkun Magazine
Tri City Interfaith Council
United Religions Initiative
United We Dream Houston
Uri L’Tzedek: The Jewish Orthodox Social Justice Movement
Valley Beit Midrash: The Jewish Pluralistic Center
Washington Ethical Society
Welcoming Gainesville
Wisdom Circle Ministry

The Know Your Neighbor: Multifaith Encounters (KYN-ME) campaign is a program of the Islamic Networks Group (ING) whose mission is to increase religious literacy and build relations among Americans of all backgrounds. In pursuit of this mission, the KYN-ME campaign, which was first initiated in partnership with the White House in 2015, aims to build interreligious and intercultural understanding, empathy, and respect by promoting face-to-face encounter between people of diverse faiths and worldviews. Know Your Neighbor: Multifaith Encounters works to foster understanding and dialogue by encouraging Americans to get to “Know Your Neighbor.”

Civil Disobedience / Resistance Training

Training event with Rev. Deth Im & Pastor Ben McBride, PICO – Learn to stand together with love and power to protect our community and organize for justice! 

A PACT Training event.

$10 donation suggested. No one will be turned away for lack of ability to contribute.

Register HereSat, Feb 25, 1:00-8:00pm, Westminster Presbyterian

Taghyeer: Palestinian Nonviolence Movement

The Taghyeer (Change) Movement offers opportunities for Palestinian action that can tip the Palestinian-Israeli conflict toward peace on the ground.

Join us for a unique opportunity to engage with Ali Abu Awwad speaking about the Taghyeer Palestinian National Nonviolence Movement.

Centered on achieving Palestinian national goals, Taghyeer focuses on engaging the Palestinian public on nonviolent social development action and countering occupation simultaneously. The movement asks Palestinians to come together to think strategically. The motto being: “Do you want to be right or do you want to succeed?”

Ali is a leading Palestinian nonviolence activist who addresses the hopes and fears of all sides in the conflict. Ali has toured the world, telling his riveting story of violent activism, imprisonment, bereavement and discovery of the path of nonviolent resistance, a story of personal transformation.